Bob Black Jack, North American record-setter at six furlongs, is scheduled to make his first start since May in the $100,000-added Vernon O. Underwood Stakes at Hollywood Park Nov. 22, trainer Jim Kasparoff said Wednesday. The Grade III Underwood is at six furlongs on Cushion Track.
Bob Black Jack, a 3-year-old colt, won the Sunshine Millions Sprint at Santa Anita in January in 1:06.53, lowering the continent standard of 1:06.60 set by G Malleah at Turf Paradise in 1995.
“He had a hard campaign, and shortly thereafter we turned him out for 90 days at Bonnie Acres Ranch, Bobby Mitchell’s place in Hemet,” said Kasparoff. “I got him back here the first week in September and haven’t missed a beat with him since.
“He worked five furlongs in 58 and three last week,” continued Kasparoff. “He will work six furlongs Saturday, and another six furlongs the following Saturday.
“Assuming he comes out of the Underwood good, he will come back in the Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita,” said Kasparoff of the seven-furlong race for 3-year-olds on Dec. 26. “It would be nice to get a Grade I win with him.”
David Flores has the call on Bob Black Jack, co-owned by Jeff Harmon and Tim Kasparoff, the trainer’s brother.
O’NEILL DUO READY FOR REAL QUIET
Trainer Doug O’Neill, recovered from a recent bout with chicken pox, is not playing chicken in the $100,000-added Real Quiet Stakes Saturday. He entered both Escalon and Mark S the Cooler in the test for 2-year-olds at 1 1/16 miles on Cushion Track.
“Escalon was a ground-saving third in the Cal Cup Juvenile, has been training great since, and keeping (jockey Rafael) Bejarano is a big help,” said O’Neill. Escalon, a California-bred colt, has won one of three starts for the Joseph Lacombe Stable.
Mark S the Cooler, a Kentucky-bred gelding owned by J. Paul Reddam, is a maiden with a third and a second in two starts at Santa Anita. He was entered in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf but failed to draw in off the also-eligible list.
“I’ve always been real high on him, and the added distance should be a big help,” said O’Neill of the gelding by Johar out the Diesis mare Felucca.
A victory could earn Mark S the Cooler a return in the $750,000 CashCall Futurity on Dec. 20, a race sponsored by Reddam.
Mark S the Cooler drew the rail and Escalon landed post six in a field of seven in the Real Quiet.
O’Neill will remain busy on the 2-year-old stakes front here Nov. 23 in the $100,000-added Hollywood Prevue with Azul Leon, winner of the Hollywood Juvenile Championship and Best Pal Stakes. The Grade III test is at seven furlongs.
O’Neill also said Square Eddie, runner-up in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, is getting a brief rest. ”He went to Magalli Farms for a two-week vacation,” said O’Neill. “I want to freshen him for the first of the year.”
LE CIRQUE PRIMED FOR HERMOSA BEACH UPSET
Le Cirque has won only one of 20 starts but trainer C. Beau Greely looks for a big effort from the 4-year-old filly in the $65,000-added Hermosa Beach Handicap for fillies and mares at 1 ½ miles on turf Sunday.
“She should like going a mile and a half,” said Greely of the filly’s first start going that long. “She’s by Dynaformer, and her dam, Queue, won a graded stakes at a mile and a half on turf.”
In her longest previous start at 1 ¼ miles on grass, Le Cirque was a fast-closing second in an allowance race at Santa Anita in March under Joseph Talamo, who has the Hermosa Beach call.
A field of seven is probable: Caprice, Rafael Bejarano, 118 pounds; High Heel Sneakers, Victor Espinoza, 115; Brushed Gold, Garrett Gomez, 114; Rushen Heat, Jose Valdivia, Jr., 114; Le Cirque, Talamo, 112; Restless Soul, Joel Rosario, 112; and Sports Edition, Martin Garcia, 111.
ARAMBULA SAVORS RIDING DOUBLE
Apprentice jockey Pedro Arambula savored his first Hollypark riding double Sunday aboard Turbo Call in the first race and Salah Pick Six in the nightcap.
“It felt great,” Arambula said Wednesday. “I was pretty surprised on the last one because it was only his second time out.”
Arambula and agent R.C. Ebanks said the rider posted his first double on the major Southern California circuit, where he has been riding since April, although he posted two doubles at Fairplex Park, where he won 15 races.
“I started riding at a ranch near home,” said Arambula, a 23-year-old native of Ventura. “I used to ride quarters and went to Texas and then Los Alamitos.
“I switched to thoroughbreds when an agent called and asked me to come to Emerald Downs in Washington,” said Arambula. “Then I went to Turf Paradise in Phoenix and came here last day of the Santa Anita meet. Everybody has been helpful, especially Tyler Baze in the jockeys’ room, and Jorge Gutierrez and Jeff Mullins in the morning.”
Arambula loses his bug at the end of this month.
FINISH LINES — Sally Lundy, an assistant to trainer Bobby Frankel overseeing a Frankel division here, said highly regarded 3-year-old filly Turn Away headed a group of thoroughbreds recently shipped here from New York…Canadian International Championship winner Marsh Side worked six furlongs on Cushion Track in 1:14.40 for trainer Neil Drysdale for a possible next start in the Japan Cup on Nov. 30...Trainer C. Beau Greely said Swaps Stakes winner Tres Borrachos could resurface in the Malibu Stakes or wait for the next 3-year-old stake at Santa Anita…Trainer Marty Jones said Cal Cup Juvenile Stakes winner Lucky Primo has been turned out at Magalli Farms. “We’re giving him a break,” he said.