09/29/2009 11:00PM

Beattie unsure what to do with Fabulous Strike


In 2008, trainer Bob Baffert won a very competitive Breeders' Cup Sprint at Santa Anita with the amazing Midnight Lute, beating a field that included East Coast sprint kingpin Fabulous Strike.

One year later, the scenario leading up to the 2009 Sprint is nearly the same.

This time, Baffert will have the sensational Zensational to take on all comers from the East. That group is currently led, once again, by Fabulous Strike, who finished fifth behind Midnight Lute in the 2008 Sprint.

The key question at the moment is whether trainer Todd Beattie will bring Fabulous Strike back to Santa Anita to compete over a Pro-Ride surface he obviously was not comfortable with a year ago. Fabulous Strike will have what would be his final Breeders' Cup prep on Saturday at Belmont in the Grade 1 Vosburgh.

"We won't start making any decisions about the Breeders' Cup until after this race," said Beattie. "He ran fifth and got beat six lengths out there last year after getting away a little poorly from the inside. He didn't run badly but he didn't run great either. Obviously if the Breeders' Cup was anywhere else but out there again, the decision to go would be a no brainer. The fact it is will obviously be part of our decision."

Beattie said he is also well aware he will have to take on the imposing Zensational over basically his home track if Fabulous Strike returns for the Sprint.

"I have a lot of respect for Zensational but we're not afraid to run our horse against anybody over a track he likes," said Beattie. "The one thing for certain is that if we do go back, I'd bring him out a lot earlier than last year."

The Vosburgh is the first of several key Sprint preps to be decided over the next several weeks, along with the Grade 3 Phoenix at Keeneland on Oct. 9 and the Grade 1 Ancient Title at Santa Anita on Oct. 11.