01/13/2011 12:46PM

Big Drama looks for Breeders' Cup encore at Gulfstream


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – On Saturday, Big Drama enters Gulfstream Park’s $100,000 Mr. Prospector billed as the reigning Breeders’ Cup Sprint winner. Trainer David Fawkes is hoping that by Monday evening, Big Drama will be better known as an Eclipse Award champion.

Big Drama will be the starting highweight and overwhelming favorite when he makes his first start since the Breeders’ Cup in the six-furlong, Grade 3 Mr. Prospector. His imposing presence limited the field to only six starters, including defending champ Custom for Carlos.

The Eclipse Award for top sprinter of 2010 figures to go to either Big Drama or Majesticperfection, and it will be announced on Monday.

“I believe the voting will be close and that we obviously have a big shot,” said Fawkes. “I think looking at the two horses, mine accomplished more throughout the course of the entire year, and to be honest I’d be disappointed if we did not win.”

Big Drama has had six works since the Breeders’ Cup, all over his home base at Calder, capped by a 47.60 bullet over a cuppy track last Saturday.

“He came out of the Breeders’ Cup well and has trained great for his return,” said Fawkes. “His last work was excellent. And I’m really happy we drew outside where he has a better opportunity to sit, relax and get a little breather than he had in the Sprint, having to go early from the rail.”

Custom for Carlos contested the pace nearly from start to finish before outgaming Past the Point to capture the 2010 Mr. Prospector over a sloppy track. Trained by Eddie Kenneally, Custom for Carlos made just two more starts the rest of the year, finishing second in the Grade 3 Toboggan and winning Oaklawn Park’s Count Fleet before being forced to the sidelines in early April due to a foot injury.

Our Edge turns back to a sprint off a steady diet of longer races for trainer Nick Zito and may be coming off his best effort since winning the Grade 3 Barbaro at 3. He comes off a second-place finish behind Arson Square after setting a blistering pace in a one-mile overnight stakes at Belmont in October.

Taqarub was lightly raced in 2010, winning two of four starts including the Grade 3 Maryland Sprint Handicap. He has been idle since finishing fourth after futilely chasing Big Drama in Calder’s Grade 2 Smile Sprint on July 10.

The vastly improved Peace at Dawn and Catalan, who was supplemented into the field, complete the lineup.