08/18/2010 3:14PM

Baze drops plans for early return to riding

Benoit & Associates
Jockey Tyler Baze hopes to resume riding at the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meet.

DEL MAR, Calif. – After working a horse at Hollywood Park on Wednesday, jockey Tyler Baze has abandoned plans to resume riding at the current Del Mar meeting less than a month after suffering facial injuries in an accident at the starting gate on July 24.

According to Vic Stauffer, Baze’s agent, the jockey is scheduled to resume riding at the Oak Tree at Santa Anita meeting, which starts Sept. 29. Baze had considered returning as early as next week, but has decided to continue his recovery and postpone his return.

“After working that horse, he and his doctor decided to wait a little bit longer and get feeling better and be 100 percent,” Stauffer said. “He admits maybe he got a bit antsy and wanted to rush back. The plan is to work on coming back at Oak Tree and have the Fairplex Park [meeting] to get back to 100 percent.”

Fairplex Park is hosting the Los Angeles County Fair meeting in September.

“He wasn’t going to ride Fairplex anyway,” Stauffer said. “He might ride a stakes or two.”

Baze, 27, was struck by the head of his mount before the start of a race on July 24. He was hospitalized for a few days and then underwent surgery to have a fractured bone stabilized near his eye. Initially, Baze hoped to return to riding in August and then pushed the timetable back to late September. He decided last weekend to go to Hollywood Park and see how he felt, Stauffer said.

“He may have done a little bit because of his excitement to come back,” Stauffer said.

Baze won four races in the first four days of the Del Mar season. The injury occurred at a time when he hoped to contend for the riding title at the meeting.

Antares World likely to be out front

The second-place finish by Antares World in the Grade 1 Hollywood Oaks last month will make her a contender in the next Grade 1 for 3-year-old fillies in Southern California – Saturday’s $300,000 Del Mar Oaks.

Trained by Steve Specht for Larry and Marianne Williams, Antares World has a pivotal role in the Del Mar Oaks over 1 1/8 miles on turf as the expected pacesetter. While she has run well near the front, Specht insists she is not committed to that style.

“I’ll let her run her race,” Specht said. “She likes being close up.”

In the American Oaks, Antares World was a 12-1 outsider. She was always near the front, led by a half-length at the eighth pole, and was beaten 1 1/4 lengths by Harmonious, who starts in the Del Mar Oaks.

“I can’t fault the race she ran,” Specht said.

The Del Mar Oaks drew a strong field. Aside from Harmonious, the leading contender is Evening Jewel, who won the Grade 2 San Clemente Handicap here July 25, her third stakes win of the year. The race features a formidable shipper in the Canadian-based Perfect Shirl, who won her stakes debut in the Grade 2 Lake George Stakes at Saratoga on July 28.

It Tiz, who won the Le Cle Stakes at Hollywood Park last month and was a wide sixth in the San Clemente Handicap, earned a spot in the field. Trainer Mark Glatt was concerned that It Tiz would be omitted if the race drew more than 10 entrants, but the race drew a maximum field of 10.

“She had such a miserable trip in her last race,” Glatt said. “She deserves a shot.”

Tell a Kelly points to Debutante

Tell a Kelly, who won a maiden race for 2-year-old fillies in her second career start Sunday, will make her stakes debut in the $250,000 Darley Debutante on Sept. 4, trainer John Sadler said.

On Sunday, Tell a Kelly closed from last in a field of seven to win the six-furlong race by 2 1/2 lengths in 1:10.59.

“It really looks like [more] distance will suit her,” Sadler said.

The Debutante is run over seven furlongs.

Tell a Kelly races for Ike and Dawn Thrash.

The Debutante field will not include the Sadler-trained Dawnie Macho, who won the Landaluce Stakes at Hollywood Park last month. She was diagnosed with a shoulder injury following a last-place finish in the Sorrento Stakes here Aug. 6 and is not expected to return to racing until the fall, Sadler said.

The Debutante field is led by Wickedly Perfect, who won the Sorrento Stakes in her stakes debut Aug. 6 and is unbeaten in two starts.

◗ The Usual Q.T. worked five furlongs in 1:03 under jockey Victor Espinoza on Wednesday, and the slow time left trainer Jim Cassidy unhappy. He said after the workout that he is likely to work The Usual Q.T. again in coming days to better prepare for the $1 million Pacific Classic on Aug. 28. The Usual Q.T., who won the Grade 1 Eddie Read Stakes here July 24, was timed in 24 seconds for the final quarter-mile of Wednesday’s workout, Cassidy said.