09/14/2013 1:51PM

Belmont Park notes: Princess of Sylmar to go in Beldame

Barbara D. Livingston
Princess of Sylmar has won the Kentucky Oaks, Coaching Club American Oaks, and Alabama Stakes in her last three starts.

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ELMONT, N.Y. – Princess of Sylmar, the leader of the 3-year-old filly division, will take on Royal Delta, the leader of the older-female division, in the Grade  1, $400,000 Beldame on Sept. 28, trainer Todd Pletcher confirmed Saturday.

Pletcher said Princess of Sylmar, the winner of the Kentucky Oaks, Coaching Club American Oaks, and Alabama Stakes in her last three starts, would not be entered Monday for next Saturday’s Grade 1, $1 million Cotillion for 3-year-old fillies at Parx.

“Beldame it is,” Pletcher said at Belmont. “I think really it came down to not wanting to back up to a mile and a sixteenth at Parx.”

Pletcher also confirmed that Verrazano, coming off a seventh-place finish in the Travers, will train up to the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile at Santa Anita on Nov. 2.

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King Kreesa may try Joe Hirsch

King Kreesa, the runner-up to Wise Dan in the Grade 2 Fourstardave at Saratoga on Aug. 10, worked four furlongs in 48.06 Saturday over the Belmont training track. It was his first move since the Fourstardave, owing to the fact that he missed seven to 10 days of training due to a foot abscess.

Trainer Jeremiah Englehart said he is considering either the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at 1 1/2 miles Sept. 28 or the $750,000 Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland on Oct. 5 for King Kreesa’s next start.

Englehart said the idea behind stretching out in the Joe Hirsch is twofold: It keeps King Kreesa running over his preferred Belmont turf course, and it could allow him to avoid facing Wise Dan, the reigning Horse of the Year, who is a specialist at a mile.

“If he ran really well at a mile and a half, would you run him in the Breeders’ Cup Turf and try to stay away from Wise Dan?” Englehart said. “Ultimately, that’s what I’d like to do.”

Englehart said that even if King Kreesa runs in the Shadwell Turf Mile, he would consider cutting back for the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint at 6 1/2 furlongs.

“It’s nice to have options,” said Englehart, who then said of Saturday’s work, “This is a start. This is positive.”