03/29/2010 12:00AM

Beautician shipping out for Ashland


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - The Grade 2, $300,000 Fantasy lost a major player Monday morning, when trainer Ken McPeek said Beautician is being redirected to the Grade 1, $400,000 Ashland at Keeneland.

"It's a Grade 1 as opposed to a Grade 2, and the decision was made to go there," said McPeek, who trains Beautician for Peter Callahan. "The fields look like they're about equal."

The Fantasy will open the Racing Festival of the South on Friday at Oaklawn, with a cast that includes Blind Luck, an Eclipse Award finalist last year at 2; All Due Respect, runner-up in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Oaks; No Such Word, winner of the Grade 3 Honeybee at Oaklawn; and Tidal Pool, who earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 101 for a recent allowance win at Oaklawn.

McPeek said Beautician would be flown to Kentucky for Saturday's Ashland. Beautician has been training at Oaklawn since running second in the Honeybee on March 13. The race was her first start at 3.

"She got a little bottled up in that last trip, and I think No Such Word kind of got a little jump on her," McPeek said. "We were still pleased with the race. It was the first start back."

Beautician, who last year was second by three-quarters of a length in the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, is a daughter of Dehere. She is out of the Rubiano mare Caroni.

"It's the same pedigree as Take Charge Lady, same sire, same broodmare sire," said McPeek, who trained Take Charge Lady, the multiple Grade 1 winner who took the Ashland in 2002.

Blind Luck was to fly to Oaklawn on Tuesday, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said. She will be ridden by Rafael Bejarano. All Due Respect also was due in on the same day and will be ridden Friday by Garrett Gomez, trainer Kathy Walsh said.

Last year, Rachel Alexandra won the Fantasy before taking the Kentucky Oaks.

Oaklawn's annual Racing Festival is made up of nine stakes worth at least $2.8 million. They are run over the final six dates of the meet. The Apple Blossom, on April 9, and the Arkansas Derby, on April 10, are both Grade 1.

A Student eyeing Arkansas Derby

Last year, trainer Mac Robertson upset a major 3-year-old stakes at Oaklawn when Win Willy took the Grade 2 Rebel at 56-1. This year, he might try to pull the same trick for the Grade 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby.

Robertson said Monday that A Student is being seriously considered for a start in the 1 1/8-mile race off a sharp allowance win here Saturday. He encountered trouble while closing from eighth to win the 1 1/16-mile race with a career-best Beyer of 84.

"If there's a lot of speed going in that race, which I think there might be, I'd like to take a shot," Robertson said of the Arkansas Derby. "He's a deep closer."

Robertson said A Student would have to be supplemented to the Arkansas Derby, at a cost of $50,000. The other option for the horse, who is owned by Barry and Joni Butzow, is to run in the $75,000 Northern Spur at a mile on the same day as the Arkansas Derby.

Robertson said he added blinkers to A Student for the Saturday allowance after the horse had previously gawked at the grandstand. He is a son of Afleet Alex and out of the multiple-stakes-producing mare La Sorbonne. Among her offspring are stakes winners The Student and Good Student.

Robertson will split his stable following the Oaklawn meet, sending a division to Delaware Park for the first time. He also will have horses at Canterbury, where he is a multiple title winner. In addition, Robertson plans to send about 10 juveniles to Fair Hill in Maryland.

Win Willy, who in his last start won the Grade 3, $150,000 Razorback, is scheduled to run Saturday in the Grade 2, $500,000 Oaklawn Handicap.

Noble's Promise could go favored in the Arkansas Derby off his runner-up finish to champion Lookin At Lucky in the Rebel on March 13. He has remained at Oaklawn since the race and galloped Monday under McPeek's assistant, Walter Blum Jr.

Dublin also is on deck for the Arkansas Derby after working a bullet six furlongs in 1:11.60 on Saturday. He had his first day back to the track Monday and jogged. His trainer, D. Wayne Lukas, said he will have one more breeze before the Arkansas Derby.