03/01/2009 12:00AM

Bejarano confident in Baldwin Stakes


ARCADIA, Calif. - Friday morning at Santa Anita, Rafael Bejarano assessed the field for Sunday's $100,000 Baldwin Stakes and came to a concise outlook for his mount, Flashmans Papers.

"He's going to win the race," Bejarano said.

Bejarano's confidence stems from Flashmans Papers's proven turf form - in England last year and especially in California in December. The Grade 3 Baldwin Stakes is run over about 6 1/2 furlongs on the hillside turf course.

Owned by Dennis O'Neill and trained by his brother, Doug, Flashmans Papers won an optional claimer over six furlongs on turf at Hollywood Park on Dec. 4 and the Eddie Logan Stakes over a mile on turf here Dec. 27.

Flashmans Papers followed the Logan with a sixth-place finish in the San Pedro Stakes for sprinters on the synthetic main track Jan. 19. He was on the lead on the inside for the first half-mile of that race before fading.

"We've seen a consistent pattern during the meet that being on the inside isn't the place to be," Doug O'Neill said.

Bejarano, who through Thursday was the second-leading rider at the meeting, expects Flashmans Papers to be near the front, stalking likely pacesetters Dream Now and Preemo.

"He doesn't have to be on the lead," Bejarano said. "He does better on turf. I think he'll get a good position."

Flashmans Papers is the only stakes winner in a field of eight. Last summer in England, Flashmans Papers pulled a 100-1 upset in the Windsor Castle Stakes at Royal Ascot, beating 24 rivals.

The Baldwin could revive the career of Brother Keith. Trained by Bobby Frankel, Brother Keith has been unplaced in two graded stakes for 3-year-olds on the main track this year and is making his turf debut Sunday.

Dream Now and Preemo are capable of winning. Dream Now scored a sharp maiden win Jan. 1, but was seventh as the 9-5 favorite in an optional claimer on the main track Jan. 23.

"The only bad race he's run was on the main track," trainer Julio Canani said.

Preemo is the only horse in the field who won his last outing. Trained by Jenine Sahadi, Preemo led throughout a six-furlong maiden race at Hollywood Park on Dec. 13, his third career start.

Trainer Bob Hess Jr. said Friday that Dream of Kaylee would be withdrawn, which would make a field of seven.