Updated on 09/16/2011 9:31AM

BC Countdown - F&M Turf: Foot abscess won't stop Kazzia


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - Kazzia, one of the leading hopefuls for the Filly and Mare Turf, was forced out of training Sunday and Monday by an abscess in her foot, an injury that will cost the filly her final Breeders' Cup work but not, her connections hope, a place in the race.

Winner of the Grade 1 Flower Bowl at Belmont Park on Sept. 28 in her first American start, Kazzia had a significant half-mile work Oct. 14 at Belmont, where she is based with Godolphin assistant trainer Tom Albertrani. But on Saturday night Kazzia showed signs of discomfort in her left front foot and was determined to have a hoof abscess. The condition is quite painful until the site of the infection is breached and the abscess drained. Albertrani said Kazzia had improved substantially the last two days but did not expect her to return to training until Wednesday.

"She was uncomfortable Saturday night, better the following day, and better this morning," Albertrani said Monday. "Once you get it out of there you can get that foot patched."

Kazzia went through a similar situation with her foot leading up to her last start. "She had the same problem before the Flower Bowl," said Albertrani. "We've been through this before."

The missed training time is far from ideal and Kazzia will miss her final scheduled breeze before Saturday's race, but Albertrani is more concerned with Kazzia moving comfortably when she's able to resume galloping than he is with lost fitness.

"That's the most important thing," he said, "as long as she's comfortable out there on the track. We feel pretty good about her making the race."

While Kazzia missed her final breeze, six other Filly and Mare turf pre-entrants worked on Sunday and Monday from coast to coast.

In New York, Owsley worked a half-mile on yielding turf in 51.20 seconds, while Starine breezed three furlongs on dirt. "It was just maintenance," said Owsley's trainer, Randy Schulhofer. "She covered the ground well. I'm very pleased with her progress."

In clocking three furlongs in 38.40 seconds, Starine "just ran down the lane," according to trainer Bobby Frankel, who was in New York while keeping a cell phone tuned into his string of horses at Hollywood Park. There, Banks Hill had her final breeze before she defends her title in the Filly and Mare Turf, where she will start under Frankel's name for the first time. Frankel said he expected Banks Hill to work in about 1:01 - she wound up clocking 1:02.20.

Also in Southern California, Dublino's three-furlong tune-up at the San Luis Rey Downs training center had trainer Laura de Seroux gushing. Dublino was timed in 35.60 seconds for three furlongs, but de Seroux said the 3-year-old filly ran on strongly past the finish, galloping out a half-mile in 47.60 seconds and five furlongs in 1:03.

"I had her in [23.20] for her last quarter," de Seroux said. "The last quarter was visually stirring. What impressed me was that she did it on dirt, which isn't her preferred surface."

Sunday at Woodbine, Chopinina worked a half-mile on yielding turf in 50.60 seconds, while at Santa Anita the leader of the American division, Golden Apples, went five furlongs on firm turf in 1:02.60. "I was pleased with it and Pat Valenzuela was pleased with it," trainer Ben Cecil said. "She just needed to stretch her legs."

Cecil said Golden Apples's shipping plans had suddenly changed on Monday. "My owner [Gary Tanaka] has called an audible," Cecil said. Golden Apples had been scheduled to fly here Wednesday, but now will ship on Thursday, Cecil said.

Thar blows Turtle Bow

Turtle Bow has been found. The French 3-year-old filly who just missed catching Kazzia in the Flower Bowl had fallen off the map in the weeks after her race. But not to worry - she is safe and sound, stabled with trainer Niall O'Callaghan at Churchill Downs.

O'Callaghan said Sunday that Turtle Bow is training forwardly and on target for the race, and that he was conferring regularly with her trainer, Francois Rohaut, about Turtle Bow's day-to-day progress.