Home of the Louisiana Derby

Barn Notes: Friday, December 23

 

·        Promising 2-Year-Olds Top Two-Turn Dec. 26 Allowance

·        One Mean Man Slices Through Woodchopper Work

·        No Distortion Tops Work Tab

 

PROMISING 2-YEAR-OLDS TOP TWO-TURN DEC. 26 ALLOWANCE

A field of seven juveniles with possible Triple Crown aspirations will line up in Monday’s seventh race, a mile an 70-yard allowance optional claiming event ($50,000), topped by promising juveniles from the powerhouse barns of Mark Casse, Tom Amoss and Mike Stidham.

Morning-line favorite Hollow Point was a sharp winner of a seven-furlong maiden last out on Nov. 26, besting his rivals by two easy lengths. Owned by Jackpot Ranch and trained by Mark Casse, the good-looking gray son of Into Mischief is a half-brother to a pair of stakes-placed horses, including Grade III-placed sprinter Funny Sunny. Florent Geroux rides from post six.

Klaravich Stables and William H. Lawrence’s Shareholder Value is a well-bred son of Uncle Mo from the Tom Amoss barn who dominated a rained-off two-turn mile maiden at Keeneland on Oct. 21 at third asking. Stepped up into the Grade II Kentucky Jockey Club last out, he dealt with traffic issues and finished sixth of 12. Shaun Bridgmohan, aboard last out, returns to the saddle as they break from post two.

Stallionaire Enterprises’ Bobby the Brain was a smart winner on debut on Dec. 3 at this trip for trainer Mike Stidham. By hot sire Pioneerof the Nile, the dark bay gelding wired that field with professionalism under Mitchell Murrill, who returns to ride the 5-2 second choice from the outside post seven.

Another to watch in this intriguing field of juveniles is BCWT Ltd.’s Society Beau, who races for veteran conditioner Neil Howard. The homebred son of Curlin out of the A. P. Indy mare Seattle Society already has six starts to his credit, including a mile maiden win three back. Sporting arguably the best class lines in the race, he finished third behind Lookin At Lee in his second start and then second to Not This Time at third asking. Those two would go on to finish third and second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita in early November. Robby Albarado rides from post five

The remainder of the allowance field is comprised of Norman C. Hatfill’s Quarterly (Richard Eramia, post two) from the red-hot Michelle Lovell barn, another Howard trainee in Dogwood Stable’s Hotfoot (Miguel Mena, post three) and Dennis E. Foster’sIron Monarch (C. J. McMahon, post four), from the barn of always-dangerous Danny Pish.

ONE MEAN MAN SLICES THROUGH WOODCHOPPER WORK

L. T. B., Inc. and Hillerich Racing’s four-time stakes-winning turf sophomoreOne Mean Man worked five furlongs in a sharp 1:01 flat (2nd of 44) for trainer and part-owner-breeder Bernie Flint on Friday morning, signaling his readiness for the $75,000 Woodchopper on New Year’s Eve – the final sophomore turf stakes of the calendar year. The move was his second off a short freshening since finishing seventh in the Grade III Commonwealth Turf at Churchill Downs.

“He’s doing really well,” Flint said. “This is the perfect time to bring him back. Naturally we’re looking at the (stakes) program at the Fair Grounds. We’re here and he likes it here.

“We’ve been very fortunate to have him,” he continued. “Those kinds are few and far between. I try to give them all a little bit of a rest along the line and it looks like it worked out for him. He is sound and ready.”

Already a stakes winner over the Stall-Wilson turf course in the $50,000 Keith Gee Memorial earlier this year, he also annexed the Grade III American Derby, $200,000 Mystic Lake Derby and $100,000 Jefferson Cup. In arguably his best performance, he was a solid fourth – beaten only 1¼ lengths – in the Grade I Secretariat Stakes in mid-August.

NO DISTORTION TOPS WORK TAB

No Distortionlit up the track on Friday morning for Larry Jones. The Brereton C. Jones homebred worked a bullet of 90, going a half-mile in 48.20. Unplaced last out in the Listed $200,000 Zia Park Derby, the son of Distorted Humor was a 3¼-length winner of the Listed $100,000 Long Branch Stakes at Monmouth four back.

Multiple graded stakes winner Clearly Now returned to the work tab for the first time since finishing second in the $75,000 Thanksgiving Handicap for trainer Ron Faucheux and owner Brittlyn Stable. The nearly black son of Horse Greeley worked a half-mile in an easy 51 flat.

Promising Louisiana-bred sophomore filly Sunny Oak worked five furlongs in 1:02.20 for trainer Eddie Johnston. The daughter of Giant Oak won the $50,000 Happy Ticket Stakes on opening day and then was a good second in the $100,000 Louisiana Champions Day Ladies Sprint.

Grade I-placed Albano worked five furlongs in 1:01.20 for trainer Larry Jones. The Brereton C. Jones homebred runs in allowance company on Thursday, Dec. 29.

A unraced juvenile filly to watch is Fair Grounds Racing Club’s Efforting. The daughter of top juvenile sire Into Mischief earned the five-furlong bullet on Friday morning of 1:00.60 out of the gate. The granddaughter of five-time stakes winner Alltheway Bertie is trained by Al Stall, Jr.