|Arlington Park Barn Notes 8/14/03
In today's notes:
Godolphin Racing Inc.'s Sulamani, morning line favorite for Saturday's 21st running of the Grade I Arlington Million and head standard bearer of eight European invaders for the Chicago showcase event, suffered a slight stone bruise which kept him from going to the track Thursday morning at Arlington Park. However, his connections hope to resume his training Friday.
Speaking over the phone from his Newmarket base of operations, Godolphin racing manager Simon Crisford issued the following statement:
"Sulamani has suffered a slight stone bruise, which is the reason he did not go to the track this (Thursday) morning," Crisford said. "He has not missed any work, and we are currently monitoring the situation. We hope to resume training tomorrow (Friday)."
Sulamani, winner of the Group I Prix du Jockey-Club (French Derby) last spring and runner-up in the Group I Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe last October while still a sophomore, showed his best form this year when he captured the Grade I Dubai Sheema Classic at Nad al Sheba March 29. In his most recent trip to the post July 26, the 4-year-old son of Hernando finished second in the Group I King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes at Ascot while conceding 12 pounds to the winner.
Great Britain's King George Stakes was the third leg of the 2003 World Series of Racing Championship, which announced a partnership with Rolls Royce Motor Cars Ltd. shortly before the Ascot event. Saturday's Arlington Million, which attracted a field of 13 of the best turf horses in the world when post positions were drawn Wednesday, will be the fourth leg of this year's World Series.
Godolphin is seeking the 100th group or grade I win of its 10-year history with Sulamani in Saturday's Arlington Million.
Austrian-born jockey Andreas Suborics, familiar to American and Chicago Thoroughbred racing fans for his winning ride in the 2001 Arlington Million aboard Silvano, was named Thursday morning to ride Mrs. Carde Ostermann-Richter's Paolini in Saturday's 2003 edition of Arlington Park's centerpiece event.
Suborics, who rode Paolini to an unlucky sixth-place finish in last year's Arlington Million, replaces Eduardo Pedroza, the Panamanian-born reinsman who was named astride Paolini during Wednesday's post position draw.
Pedroza, aboard Paolini for his last start when eighth in the Group I Prince of Wales's Stakes June 18 at Royal Ascot, encountered visa problems while still in Germany Thursday. He also rode Paolini in his previous effort when the 5-year-old German-bred finished third in the Group I Queen Elizabeth II Cup April 27 at Sha Tin in Hong Kong.
Suborics was aboard Paolini Thursday morning at Arlington when he breezed three-eighths of a mile in :38 over the sloppy main track.
"I was very happy with the way he went," said Suborics shortly after the breeze. "It was the first time I have sat on him since Dubai (March 29) and he felt good under me."
Suborics finished second, beaten three lengths by the since-sidelined Ipi Tombe in the Grade I Dubai Duty Free last spring while astride Paolini, and the duo combined for a runner-up effort in the Group I Hong Kong Cup at Sha Tin last December.
When sixth but beaten less than a length for the win in last year's Arlington Million, Suborics expressed the frustration of his troubled trip shortly after dismount.
"I was making a good run coming into the straight," the Austrian said, "but the field was so packed I had no place to run. (Another horse) came over on me and I had no place to run the last two furlongs. I couldn't move. I got within a length of the winner and had no place to go. I couldn't jump over them. I still had a lot of horse."
Both of Laura de Seroux's charges in Saturday's International Festival of Racing had encouraging gallops over the turf course Thursday morning. De Seroux is looking for a better effort from Geringer, Klein & Naify et al.'s Dublino, one of the primary choices in the Grade I Beverly D., than what she showed while finishing 10th in last year's Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf. That was the only race in Dublino's nine-race career in which she finished worse than second.
"Dublino looked like a gazelle in her work today," said de Seroux. "Last year she was flat for the Breeders' Cup Filly & Mare Turf. She had a tiny bit of colic that week, and there were other slightly negative signs then that I should have paid more attention to. But this time at Arlington, she's sharp. This division is wide open and she'll need to run her best race."
Good things may also be in store for Naify, Sugarman, Vistas LLC et al.'s Just Wonder, who will go to the post in Saturday's Grade I Secretariat Stakes.
"He's done nothing wrong for me," said de Seroux. "However, I've made mistakes with him. He ran big in his first race for me. Then we entered him in the San Rafael on the dirt because we wanted to see if he might be a Kentucky Derby horse. That race was a disaster, and instead of closing strongly, the pace got to him and he ran backwards. We put him back on the grass where he belonged but he had gate trouble in the La Puente and that compromised him severely. We shipped him to Bay Meadows for a confidence builder in the Ascot, which he won in a canter. He followed up with a nice win in the Cinema, and he went great this morning.
"He's by Hernando," said de Seroux, "so I'm very hopeful that the mile and a quarter and the cut in the ground here will be perfect for him."
Ralph E. & Aury Todd's The Tin Man has had one outing over the Arlington Park turf course in his career, a fine fourth in last year's Grade I John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf. Beaten just three lengths for all the money, The Tin Man earned $135,520 for his effort in that mile and a half affair, and on Saturday he will need to stretch his sharp, front-end speed over the shorter distance of a mile and a quarter in the Arlington Million.
"He seems to handle this course really well," said exercise rider Crystal Brown, who accompanied The Tin Man in morning gallops Wednesday and Thursday. "He ran well on it last year, and we're all hoping he does the same thing Saturday."
The Tin Man comes in to the Million with a lifetime bankroll of $933,620. A third-place finish or better in the Million would make The Tin Man Thoroughbred racing's newest millionaire.
Arlington Million candidate Kaieteur, owned by Susan McCarthy, galloped on the yielding turf course Thursday morning.
Arlington Million candidate Olden Times, owned by H R H Prince A A Faisal, galloped on the sloppy main track Thursday morning.
Arlington Million candidate Tripat, owned by SNC Jean-Louis Bouchard, galloped on the sloppy main track Thursday morning.
Arlington Million candidate Touch of Land, owned by Gary A. Tanaka, galloped on the sloppy main track Thursday morning.
Beverly D. candidate Walzerkoenigin, owned by Gestut Schlenderhan, galloped on the sloppy main track Thursday morning.
Secretariat Stakes candidate Joe Bear, owned by Christopher Ransom, galloped on the yielding turf course Thursday morning.
American-based Arlington Million candidates galloping Thursday at Arlington Park included Sheikh Maktoum bin Rashid al Maktoum's Storming Home, Stonecrest Farm's Perfect Drift, 3rd Turn Stables' Honor in War and Ralph & Aury Todd's The Tin Man.
American-based Secretariat candidates galloping Thursday at Arlington Park included Taub, Papiano & Noctis Stable's Californian and Everest Stables Inc.'s Gato Gato Gato on the main track and Brett Rice's Native Hawk on the turf.
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