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Arlington Park

Arlington Park Barn Notes (7/13/07)

Contact: Graham Ross
graham.ross@arlingtonpark.com

In today's notes:

‘CLOUDY’ POSSIBLE FOR ARLINGTON HANDICAP BUT CANADA CONSIDERED

After being the runner-up in Arlington Park’s Grade III Stars and Stripes Turf two years ago, S J Stable LLC’s Cloudy’s Knight came back to run in that year’s Grade III Arlington Handicap and finished fifth.

Earlier this month, after making the pace in this summer’s 12-furlong Stars and Stripes, the gutsy Cloudy’s Knight grudgingly released command in the final jump to finish second by a nose in an extremely impressive performance. Might the oversized 6-year-old gelding try again here in the shorter Arlington Handicap July 21? The Arlington Handicap, at 10 furlongs over the Arlington grass, serves as the final major local prep for the Grade I Arlington Million Aug. 11.

“That mile and a quarter race here (Arlington Handicap) is under consideration and we’re also looking at that mile and a half race in Canada July 22,” said Cloudy’s Knight’s conditioner Frank Kirby, speaking of Woodbine’s Grade II Northern Dancer Turf next weekend.

“Those races next weekend are a ‘hair’ close for him,” said Kirby. “I usually try to keep his races four to six weeks apart. This is a big guy, and when he runs, he burns a lot of fuel. I’m going to let the horse direct me (to when he’s ready to run again). He’s doing fine. We’ll wait and see what happens over the next few days.”

Should he run in the Arlington Handicap, Cloudy’s Knight would be a worthy addition to the field. The big horse has a personality as colorful as his chestnut coat and seems to be getting better as he gets older. He blossomed in three starts at Fair Grounds during 2007, finishing third to E. J. Sukley’s Purim and Team Block’s Fort Prado in the Col. E. R. Bradley Handicap Jan. 13, won the Grade III Fair Grounds Handicap Feb. 10, and then was second by a half-length in the Grade II Mervin Muniz Memorial Handicap March 10 when narrowly defeated by Midnight Cry Stable’s Einstein – one of the top turf horses in the nation.

As big as he is, Cloudy’s Knight is also a horse that can’t be forced to check and then get his full head of steam going again. That trait may have been responsible his fourth-place finish between horses in Churchill’s Grade III Louisville Handicap May 26.

BROWNIE POINTS TRYING TO EMULATE BEDANKEN IN MODESTY HANDICAP

Two year’s ago, trainer Donnie K. Von Hemel brought Pin Oak Stable LLC’s Bedanken to Chicago to win Arlington’s Grade III Modesty Handicap.

Now, that same owner-trainer team is back, this time to run Pin Oak’s Brownie Points in this summer’s Modesty July 21.

The Modesty, restricted to fillies and mares at a mile and three-sixteenths over the local lawn, will be the final major local prep for Arlington’s Grade I Beverly D. Stakes Aug. 11.

Brownie Points, a homebred daughter of Forest Wildcat out of a Forty Niner mare, won Prairie Meadows’ $125,000 Iowa Distaff Stakes on the main track in her last start June 30 but finished as an excellent runner-up to Martin Schwartz’s Lady of Venice in Lone Star’s Grade III Ouija Board Handicap on grass May 28. Since that Texas turf outing, Lady of Venice returned to take down winning honors in Hollywood’s Grade II CashCall Mile Invitational Stakes July 6.

Brownie Points, a 4-year-old Kentucky-bred chestnut filly, arrived at Arlington Park on July 5 and breezed a half-mile over the local lawn in :52.60 July 11. The course was rated “good” that morning and the “dogs” were up during the move.

GOING BALLISTIC BREEZES FOR AMERICAN DERBY

Kindred Thoroughbreds LLC’s Going Ballistic finished third in Prairie Meadows’ $250,000 Iowa Derby over the main track at last asking June 29 but was a winner over grass in his previous start in Lone Star’s $100,000 Pin Oak Stud USA Stakes May 28.

Going Ballistic arrived at Arlington Park on July 5 and is being pointed toward Arlington’s Grade II American Derby, presented by Jack Daniel’s on July 21. The American Derby, run at a mile and three-sixteenths over the local lawn, is the middle leg of Arlington’s Mid-America Triple, a grass series for sophomores that concludes with the Grade I Secretariat Stakes on Arlington Million Day Aug. 11.

Trained by Donnie K. Von Hemel, Going Ballistic breezed five-eighths on the Arlington grass July 11 in 1:06.80 when the course was rated “good” and the “dogs” were well out from the inner rail.

Going Ballistic is a Florida-bred 3-year-old by Lite the Fuse out of a Holy Bull mare who was third in Lone Star’s $60,000 Grand Prairie Turf Challenge April 28, fifth behind eventual Preakness winner Curlin in Oaklawn’s Grade II Arkansas Derby April 14, and won the $100,000 Remington Park MEC Mile as juvenile last Oct. 20.

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