12/06/2012 5:36PM

Aqueduct notes: Malachite has Donk excited

Tom Keyser
Malachite came out of his racing debut with a splint bone problem.

OZONE PARK, N.Y. - Malachite was 20-1 when he debuted at Saratoga on Aug. 30, running second to the heavily bet and highly regarded Archwarrior.Malachite was beaten 3 1/4 lengths, but finished 3 1/2 lengths clear of the rest of the field.

Saturday, Malachite makes his first start since then in a seven-furlong maiden race here that goes as race 6. There doesn't appear to be a killer in this field, though Kiaran McLaughlin has an intriguing first-time starter in Elnaawi, a half-brother to the Grade 1 winner To Honor and Serve who cost $500,000 at auction.

David Donk trains Malachite, a son of Notional out of the unraced mare Jena's Gold. Donk said that Malachite wasn't totally cranked when he debuted at Saratoga and then came out of that race with a splint bone issue.

"I liked the horse and I thought it was a really good race for him. Obviously, he got tested a little bit against a good horse," Donk said. "He had a splint that was aggravating him a little bit out of the race, so we took care of it so it wouldn't be an issue in the fall. He's done well. Glad to get him back, I think he's okay."

Malachite will break from the outside post in the eight-horse field with Irad Ortiz Jr. up.
Meanwhile, Donk said that Stormy Len, a son of Harlan's Holiday who won his debut on dirt at Belmont on Sept. 29, will now be routed to the turf at Gulfstream this winter.

Following his debut win, Stormy Len finished sixth in the Nashua and eighth in the Remsen. He is out of an unraced dam who is a half-sister to Grade 1 winners on turf, Dynaforce and Cetewayo.

** Sunday will be the final day of turf racing for the year. There are two grass races carded.