06/03/2013 3:41PM

Arlington: Catalano horse merits respect in feature


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. − Considering that 140 trainers have started a runner at the 2013 Arlington meet, it’s a little hard to grasp how great an influence just two of them have cast over the proceedings. Wayne Catalano, with 26 wins, and Larry Rivelli, with 20, have combined to win 46 of the 192 races run. In other words, less than 2 percent of the trainer population has accounted for nearly one-quarter of the winners.

Rivelli has a slow day on Wednesday’s nine-race card, with only Mistie Royale (not surprisingly, a last-out winner) going in the sixth race, a $7,500 starter-allowance on turf. Catalano will be busier, with entrants in three of the races, including the featured eighth, a second-level, one-mile turf allowance also open to $40,000 claimers.

So hot has Catalano been since the first couple of days of this meet that his six winners from 11 starters in the last racing week (May 29-June 2) represented a slowdown: The previous week saw Catalano win with nine of his 14 starters.

Catalano’s entrant in the eighth is Code of Conduct, a 5-year-old Tapit horse capable of adding to the stable’s win total. Code of Conduct lost six second-level allowance races in a row after narrowly clearing his first-allowance condition in an Arlington grass mile last summer, and he required a drop in class to a $30,000 conditioned claimer to notch his third career win, but Code of Conduct’s rallying third of 10 in a May 15 Arlington race at this class level makes him a win possibility Wednesday.

Channing Hill, a major participant in Catalano’s success this meet, is off Code of Conduct and on a 10-1 shot named Scat About. Scat About is trained by Dan Peitz, for whom Hill has regularly ridden in parts of two seasons at Arlington.

A former Catalano trainee and current resident of the Louie Roussel barn, Major Gain, also could prove a major factor, but only if a trip can be worked out from post 10. That wide draw is especially dicey with the portable inner turf rail placed far out into the course, 18 feet outside lane 5.

Drawn just inside Major Gain is the horse to beat, Proceed Bee, a 7-year-old former stakes horse who is less than $3,000 short of $700,000 in career earnings. This is Proceed Bee’s second start down at a class level this low (he runs under the $40,000 claiming option). In his first such race, a Polytrack race May 24, Proceed Bee finished a decent third to sharp winner Control Tower – trained, of course, by Catalano.