$2 Million Bessemer Trust Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (Grade I)
2-year-old Colts & Geldings
1 1/16 Miles
Thursday, October 25, 2007
Dixie Chatter – The Norfolk Stakes winner was declared from the Juvenile Thursday after spiking a fever Wednesday afternoon.
The 2yo colt, flown in from California Monday, ran a temperature Wednesday afternoon, did not eat his grain Wednesday night and ran a 102-degree temperature Thursday morning. He was treated with antibiotics by a veterinarian.
“We just turned in a scratch for him,” said trainer Richard Mandella dejectedly. “It ain’t what we came back here for, but we’ve seen this movie before. It’s better to err on the side of caution. Hopefully he won’t get too much sicker and will be able to fly home Monday.”
Mandella came to Monmouth Park with high hopes for the son of Dixie Union, winner of the 2000 Haskell Ivitational here, and grandson of Phone Chatter, winner of the 1993 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies. The Herman Sarkowsky homebred scored his first stakes victory in the Norfolk at Santa Anita on Sept. 30.
Dixie Chatter was on the same Monday flight with Oak Leaf Stakes winner Cry and Catch Me, a Bob Baffert trainee scratched from the Juvenile Fillies after spiking a fever Wednesday morning.
Hall of Famer Mandella finished one-two in the 2003 Breeders Cup Juvenile with Action This Day and Minister Eric.
Globalization – The 2yo son of Touch Gold galloped 1 1/4m under Rodney Paine Thursday morning in preparation for a start in the Juvenile.
The Rick Violette-trained colt broke his maiden in impressive front-running fashion by more than seven lengths at Belmont Park last time out.
“That’s a big, big question to ask a 2yo, maybe sometimes too big, to go from a maiden race to a championship day here, but conditions suit. He’s got speed, this track should be speed favoring,” Violette said.
“I think we’ll end up putting War Pass between a rock and a hard place. I’m not sure they want to go head-to-head with a 30-1 shot. They’re going to have to make that choice.”
Kodiak Kowboy/Pyro – The two 2yos from trainer Steve Asmussen’s barn schooled in the starting gate and galloped at Monmouth Park on Thursday.
Assistant trainer Scott Blasi indicated that all systems are “go” with the 2yos and that Asmussen would be at the Monmouth barn on Friday morning.
Kodiak Kowboy will be ridden for the first time by jockey John Velazquez, who has eight Breeders’ Cup mounts over this year’s two-day event. Velazquez has six Breeders’ Cup wins to his credit, but has not yet won the Juvenile.
Shaun Bridgmohan, who has ridden both colts for Asmussen, has the mount on Pyro. Bridgmohan has had four Breeders’ Cup mounts in the past and seeks his first win.
Old Man Buck – Lawrence Carroll’s Hold That Tiger colt stood in the gate and then galloped 1 ½ m on Thursday. With trainer Ken McPeek still en route to the New Jersey, exercise rider Jesus Castanon oversaw the morning preparations. He said Old Man Buck and his stablemate A to the Croft, a Juvenile Fillies starter, both seemed to relish the off going.
Overextended – J. Paul Reddam’s 50-1 longshot Overextended galloped at Monmouth Park on Thursday. His trainer, Doug O’Neill, was expected from California Thursday.
Reddam, an astute businessman, is known for his competitiveness and this isn’t the first horse he’s sent to the Breeders’ Cup at a price.
In 2006, his Red Rocks upset the field to win the Breeders’ Cup Turf and pay $23.60. The 4yo colt will try to defend his title in that race this Saturday and is the third choice on the morning line at 7-2.
In 2004, Reddam and partner’s 2yo Wilko won the Juvenile and returned $58.60 for the win.
The founder of Ditech.com, a mortgage loan company, Reddam is currently the president of CashCall, a California-based finance lending company.
Salute the Sarge – In his first outing over the Monmouth Park track Thursday morning, Salute the Sarge jogged 2m.
The 2yo son of Forest Wildcat arrived Wednesday evening following a flight from Southern California and trainer Eric Guillot said the colt made the trip in good shape.
“He’s doing great,” the trainer said. “He feels like King Kong. He’s more like Sergeant Carter than Gomer Pyle today.”
About prospects for Saturday’s Juvenile, Guillot quipped, “At post time on Saturday ‘Sarge’ will take roll call. They’re going to Boot Camp and they better bring their boots.”
Shore Do – “Gooey” and “a mess” were the words trainer Chuck Peery used to describe the Monmouth Park track that Shore Do jogged 2m over Thursday morning. The official rating was “muddy.”
An off-track Saturday, which seems likely, would be a new racing experience for Shore Do, but Peery was not stewing over it. “Worries are for moms and their kids,” he said.
“I have a lot of confidence in my horse,” he said. “He’s just a real nice horse. He trained well at Santa Anita on the dirt. He ran well on Polytrack at Del Mar, and he’s won on the grass. He can run on anything. We’ll run on the same track as everybody and I wish a nice dry track for everyone. If we can get everybody going, the horse will come with his run.”
Slew's Tiznow – Slew’s Tiznow schooled in the paddock and then jogged 1 1/2m after the renovation break under exercise rider Diego Rodriguez.
Runner-up in the Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland in his most recent start, Slew’s Tiznow will break from post position four under regular rider Julien Leparoux.
Trainer Francois Parisel was unsure how Slew’s Tiznow would perform on an off track, but figured he could get a line early on Saturday if the track is wet.
Slew’s Tiznow’s full brother, Slew’s Tizzy, is entered in Saturday’s first race, the Pegasus Stakes. Slew’s Tizzy won the Lone Star Derby this spring over a sealed sloppy surface at the Texas track.
Tale of Ekati – The Futurity winner at Belmont Park galloped at his home base and left on a van, arriving at Monmouth close to noon on Thursday along with stablemate Nobiz Like Shobiz in Barn 17. He is expected to be on the track for the first time Friday morning.
Trainer Barclay Tagg wasn’t pleased with the speedy final prep this week when jockey Eibar Coa was aboard for a 4f breeze in 45 4/5, and the 10-post had caused him some concern. But the task became a bit easier Thursday with the defection of Dixie Chatter, leaving a field of 12 intact.
Tale of Ekati has never been beyond 7f and only been on fast tracks in his three career starts. He will be going1 1/16m on Saturday on a track that could come up sloppy.
War Pass – Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito said the unbeaten Cherokee Run colt is the best 2yo he’s brought to the Breeders’ Cup.
War Pass is the 5-2 morning line favorite in the field of 13.
“I’ve had a lot of nice 2yos, obviously, but 3-for-3 is a terrific record. What else could you ask for?” Zito said.
After winning twice at Saratoga this summer, War Pass jumped into contention for the 2yo title by winning the 1m Champagne at Belmont Park on Oct. 6.
“He’s been training very, very well,” Zito said. “He took the Champagne pretty good. I was surprised how well he took it because it’s a tough race no matter what. A flat mile going as fast as you can could be difficult. That was pretty good.”
Zito likes drawing post position two and said the colt and jockey Cornelio Velasquez won’t change what has been a winning style.
“I think we have no options but to just keep the same strategy,” Zito said. “He’s been undefeated going to the lead, so that’s what we want to do.
“Tactically, for us, I would just like to see my horse run his race. I think he’s the fastest horse in the race and hopefully no one has got a $2 million rabbit in there. This is the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and he’s the fastest horse in the race. So be it. If he makes it, he makes it. Last time, he went 45 (for the half-mile in the Champagne). How fast do you want him to go?
“If they want to chase him; if they want to use their horse and set it up from some other guy coming from behind, so be it. But I don’t think anybody has got his speed and if they test him, they’re going to melt. He may melt, but they’re going to melt, too.
Wicked Style – He may be a 2yo, but you wouldn’t know it from his demeanor.
“He traveled great (from Keeneland) and the surroundings don’t bother him a bit,” said trainer Rusty Arnold. “There’s a lot to see here (Monmouth Park), and he doesn’t pay attention to any of it.”
The son of Macho Uno jogged over Monmouth’s main track on Thursday morning, and was scheduled to school in the paddock before the first race, weather permitting.
Arnold has been represented in the Breeders’ Cup four times, but it’s been eight years between starters.
Z Humor – The son of Distorted Humor seems to be back where trainer Bill Mott had him before a disconcerting misstep in his final work earlier this week, and the Hall of Fame conditioner believes he has a substantial chance of outrunning his 12-1 morning line odds.
“He got over the track today just fine,” Mott said after a 1 ¼ m gallop Thursday over the main track. “He’s moving absolutely fantastic, absolutely floating over the ground.”
Mott has won his share of Breeders’ Cup races, but the Juvenile has not been among his five Championship race victories. His best outing to date was a runner-up finish with Take Me Out in the 1990 Juvenile.
“I think he’s going to like two turns,” said Mott, who sent the colt here for the Sapling on Labor Day weekend after breaking his maiden at Saratoga. “He got left at the post. He stumbled at the start and fell a long ways back. He made up a lot of ground, but lost all chance leaving the gate.”