07/04/2011 3:16PM

Belmont Park: No excuses for Hilda’s Passion in Bed o' Roses

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Tom Keyser
Tamarind Hall, with David Cohen riding, wins the Bed o' Roses.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Trainer Todd Pletcher said he could find no plausible excuse for Hilda’s Passion’s disappointing sixth-place finish as the 1-4 favorite in Sunday’s Grade 2 Bed o’ Roses Handicap at Belmont and plans to move forward to the Grade 1 Ballerina at Saratoga on Aug. 27.

“The only explanation I would have is I don’t think she liked the surface, which obviously was playing pretty slow,” Pletcher said. “Besides that, we don’t see any other physical explanation for it at this point. Just got to throw it out and regroup – point for the Ballerina and see what happens.

Meanwhile, trainer Jeremiah Englehart was driving Bed o’ Roses upset winner Tamarind Hall back to Finger Lakes on Monday morning, although not always at a fast rate of speed.

“I’ve had a permanent smile on my face,” Englehart said about 90 minutes into his 5 1/2-hour journey. “I look down and I’m going 35 miles an hour.”

Englehart said that Tamarind Hall, who earned a 98 Beyer Speed Figure for her victory, will likely be pointed to the Ballerina at Saratoga – provided he still has the horse. Englehart said owner Mark Vondrasek has received “about half a dozen calls from people interested in buying her. I don’t think he’ll sell, but he is entertaining offers.”