Thursday, November 05, 2009

Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Turf notes Thurs., Nov. 5

Allegre – Trainer Brian Koriner said Thursday morning his Emirates Airline Breeders’ Cup Turf prospect is dealing with a foot issue and the prospects of the 4yo Orientate colt running will be considered on Friday.

Koriner said the colt appeared to have the beginnings of an abscess.

Allegre did not go to the track on Thursday.

Conduit/Spanish Moon – Conduit, back to defend his Turf title over the Santa Anita grass, was his usual assertive self Thursday morning, greeting onlookers at the quarantine barn with a few loud snorts.

Conduit went to the turf course for a gallop in company with stablemate Zacinto (Mile).

Trainer Michael Stoute said all was well with the 4yo son of Dalakhani, who finished fourth – 2 ¼ lengths behind Sea of Stars – in the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe last out.

Spanish Moon, a 5yo by El Prado, came out alone after his mates had returned to the barn and galloped around the grass course on his own.

Conduit drew post 2 for the Turf and will have regular rider Ryan Moore in the irons. The colt has a strong stretch kick, which he demonstrated here last year when he circled the entire field on the turn and went on to win going away by 1 ½ lengths.

Spanish Moon, who comes into Saturday’s race off two wins in France, is also coming to the race the right way, the trainer said. He drew post 5 for the Turf, with Kieren Fallon to ride for the first time.

Dar Re Mi – Veteran jockey Frankie Dettori, who has won eight Breeders’ Cup races from 55 starters, will replace regular rider Jimmy Fortune on the 4yo Singspeil filly and on trainer John Gosden’s starter in the Juvenile Turf, Pounced.

“Frankie is highly experienced here,” Gosden said. “He cut his teeth here during his early teenage years. He’s ridden here a lot. It’s no fault of Jimmy’s that he’s never ridden here.”

Dar Re Mi will run in the Turf against males because she is proven at the distance of 1½ m and the Gosden said he doesn’t think she is suited to run at the 1¼m distance of the Filly & Mare Turf.

“From the filly’s point of view, we thought it would be a lot fairer to run her close to her favorite distance, even if that meant taking on the boys,” he said.

Gosden said he preferred not to adjust his strategy for a particular race.

“You don’t want to be dictated to by anybody else’s running style, you just want to run according to how you’re traveling and how the jockey feels about it,” he said. “I really leave that up to jockeys. I don’t think you should be tying people down to instructions. In my experience it never really works.”

Monzante – The 5yo gelding jogged 2m on the main track Thursday for trainer Mike Mitchell with exercise rider Jose Dominguez aboard.

Presious Passion – The 6yo gelding, who won the Clement Hirsch Stakes over the Santa Anita turf course last out on Oct. 11, galloped 2m around the main track under exercise rider Fernando Espinoza Thursday morning.

Trainer Mary Hartmann said Presious Passion is ready to do his thing on Saturday.

“He’s as ready for this as he can be,” Hartmann said. “He’ll run his race his way. He always does.”

Presious Passion, a son of Royal Anthem, is a dedicated front-runner who has the stamina to remain a factor to the finish. He won the Clement Hirsch at 1 ¼m by opening a long early lead, and in July won the 1 3/8m United Nations Stakes at Monmouth by two lengths after surprising the field by opening a 20-length lead the first half-mile.

Red Rocks – This will be the fourth and final run in the Breeders’ Cup Turf for the 6yo son of Galileo, trainer Brian Meehan said Thursday.

“He’ll be retired after this run,” Meehan said. “He’s coming to the race in grand shape. He’s training great.”

Meehan, who saddled Red Rocks to win the Turf in 2006 at Churchill Downs and run 3rd at Monmouth Park in 2007, has named Julien Leparoux to ride the horse for the first time Saturday.

Thursday morning, Red Rocks went out in company with stablemate Radiohead (Juvenile) and schooled in the paddock and in the starting gate before galloping around the main track.

Red Rocks, who was trained by Mark Hennig when he ran 10th in last year’s Turf at Santa Anita, returned to Meehan’s care this fall, and finished fourth in the Cumberland Lodge Stakes most recently on Sept. 27.

Telling – With trainer Steve Hobby astride, Turf contender Telling got his first experience down the hill of the Santa Anita grass course Thursday morning.

“He got a little upset waiting around to go out there, but he settled down once the outrider arrived,” Hobby said. “It went great, he marched right down there. It was a bit to do for nothing. He’s a professional, but if we didn’t give him a practice run, after the race I didn’t want to be asking myself ‘what if’. It’s not like the sprinters who have to fly across from the turf to the Pro-Ride. In a 1 ½-mile race, we’ll cross it in 25 and change, so it’s not nearly as much of a concern.”

Hobby is thrilled with the way Telling is coming into the race, and hopes that he has an “improving horse at the right time.

“The Belmont grass was really soft and taxing the day he ran (Turf Classic Invitational), but as crazy as it sounds, he came out of it less tired than when he won the Sword Dancer,” Hobby said. “The firmer the better for him and that (Santa Anita) turf course is just what we want.”

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