07/10/2013 3:49PM

Belmont Park: Curlin or Jim Dandy for Bad Hombre

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Barbara D. Livingston
Bad Hombre cleared his first-level allowance condition running a mile in 1:35.50 and earning a 90 Beyer Speed Figure.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Bad Hombre, who was a bit of a disappointment as a 2-year-old, seems to have found his groove midway through his 3-year-old season and will be given a stakes opportunity at in his next start, trainer John Kimmel said.

A 2 1/4-length winner of a one-mile, first-level allowance race last Saturday, Bad Hombre could be a candidate for the $100,000 Curlin Stakes on July 26 or the Grade 2, $600,000 Jim Dandy Stakes the following day.

A son of Sky Mesa and out of A Little Evil, who is a half-sister to 1997 Horse of the Year Favorite Trick, Bad Hombre lost his first six starts before capturing a seven-furlong maiden race here on May 11. After finishing second to Integrity in an allowance race on Belmont Stakes Day, Bad Hombre cleared his first-level allowance condition with a good-looking victory on Saturday when running a mile in 1:35.50 and earning a 90 Beyer Speed Figure.

Kimmel said he asked jockey Junior Alvarado whether to cut back or stretch out Bad Hombre in distance, and Alvarado told Kimmel, “He definitely thinks we should go a mile and an eighth. He’s very rateable, he has tactical speed, and when you call on him he finished well and galloped out extremely well.”

Kimmel said Bad Hombre has matured since last summer and earlier this year when exercise riders would call him timid.
“I had the idea that maybe I’ll put him on the grass where he didn’t have to deal with kickback and the pace scenario’s a little more moderate,” Kimmel said. “And he ran two decent races on the grass at Gulfstream. Then, when I put him back on the dirt, he had a lot more confidence in himself and he really improved with each race.”