Updated on 09/16/2011 7:50AM

After disastrous Smile, 'Deputy' runs right back


MIAMI - Trainer David Fawkes had been pointing Junior Deputy to Calder's July 13 Smile Sprint Handicap since the colt finished third in Oaklawn's Grade 3 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap nearly three months ago. But after waiting all that time for an opportunity to compete for a $400,000 purse over his home track, Junior Deputy was eliminated leaving the gate in the Smile, lunging at the start before trailing the field to finish 14 lengths behind Orientate, the front-running winner.

Fawkes will waste little time wheeling Junior Deputy back. The colt will face much softer opposition under optional claiming and allowance conditions in Monday's $40,000 feature race at Calder.

"It was so disappointing to have waited all that time to run him in the Smile and have that happen," said Fawkes. "He was training so well going into the race and we had such high hopes for him. Then to have your bubble burst like that is really tough. He just reared up or lunged at the start. Cornelio [Velasquez] did the right thing by not abusing him after that and just letting him gallop out behind the field. It's a little quick to bring him back in nine days like this, but the race took nothing out of him and I'm just looking for a spot to help get his confidence back."

Junior Deputy was a stakes winner at 3 last year, winning the Prairie Mile four weeks after posting a career-best 106 Beyer Speed Figure winning a first-level allowance race at Keeneland. In this year's Count Fleet he contested the early pace before finishing a tiring third behind Explicit and Entepreneur. Velasquez will retain the mount.

A field of seven will contest Monday's feature. Along with Junior Deputy it includes Thrillin Discovery, Alice's Notebook, Danaher Steve, Pay the Preacher, Ballado's Devil, and Sun Fighter.

Ballado's Devil had a three-race win streak snapped when finishing a tired fifth in the Naked Greed Stakes. In his previous start, Ballado's Devil, an improved 4-year-old, outgamed Danaher Steve to win the Forty One Carats Handicap over a wet track.

Alice's Notebook makes his first start since finishing fourth, beaten three lengths by stablemate Fappie's Notebook, in the 2001 Smile. He runs well fresh, having returned from a five-month layoff to win a similar optional claiming and allowance race here last season.