MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (April 29, 2012) – Harold L. Queen’s Hot Summer, the 55-1 runner-up in the Grade 2 Inside Information at Gulfstream Park on March 17, dodged early morning raindrops at Calder Casino & Race Course on Sunday when working a half-mile in :49. Hot Summer was one of just 14 horses that recorded an official work on a soggy south Florida morning

“You kind of get backed into a corner with the weather sometimes,” trainer David Fawkes said. “But we needed to work. We kept her off the rail and she went fine. We have no complaints.”

Hot Summer is scheduled to start in the Grade 1 Humana Distaff at Churchill Downs on Saturday as part of the Kentucky Derby Day undercard. The filly will board a Tuesday flight to Louisville along with stablemate Apriority, who is expected to contest the Grade 2 Churchill Downs Handicap, a race he was second in last year.

A two-time Grade 3 winner with victories last year in the Comely at Aqueduct and the Victory Ride at Saratoga, Hot Summer has yet to compete at her home base Calder, although that is likely to change this year.

According to Fawkes, both Hot Summer and Apriority are slated for mid-summer appearances in the annual Summit of Speed program with the Grade 1 Princess Rooney and the Grade 2 Smile Sprint listed as their respective targets. Fawkes also has recently acquired Tamarind Hall, last seen finishing 10th in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Sprint, pointed towards the Princess Rooney.

This year’s Summit of Speed will take place Saturday, July 7.


RODRIGUEZ A FOUR-TIME SATURDAY WINNER

Though still early in the season, the battle for leading rider at the Calder Meet has begun to take shape. With four victories on the Saturday program, the most by any rider at the meet thus far, apprentice Joe Rodriguez has supplanted two-time title holder Luis Saez atop the jockey’s table.

Rodriguez tallied two victories for trainer Kirk Ziadie on Saturday, winning the second race with Large Kaufy and the last race of the day aboard Almaak. Rodriguez also netted wins with Bessie M in race seven for trainer Antonio Sano and Roman Frolic in race 10 for Milt Wolfson.

With 14 wins from 54 starters, Rodriguez entered the Sunday program two victories clear of Saez, who has gotten his picture taken 12 times at the meet. Orlando Bocachica, who posted a riding double on Friday and was a one-time Saturday winner, is currently third in the standings with 10 wins.


HEAR YE HEAR YE LIKELY TO DEFEND SUMTER TITLE

Trainer Stanley Gold has indicated that Hear Ye Hear Ye, the winner of last year’s $55,000 Sumter Stakes, is likely to defend his title in this year’s running, to be held at the distance of one mile and 70 yards on Saturday, May 5.

The son of Hear No Evil hasn’t started since a third-place finish in the $75,000 Darn That Alarm Stakes on September 3, 2011.

“We didn’t really want to go straight to the stake,” Gold said. “But we tried entering an allowance race here earlier in the meet and it didn’t go, so there was really no other option.”

Entries for the Sumter will be taken Monday, April 30.