06/05/2001 11:00PM

Bradshaw reopens public stable


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Randy Bradshaw, a former public trainer who has assisted D. Wayne Lukas in Southern California since March 1999, said on Wednesday that he intends to open a public stable in the Midwest in coming months.

Bradshaw said he officially left the Lukas organization on May 31, but has agreed to work for him at Santa Anita until Lukas returns from New York next week.

Bradshaw said he was technically a contract employee with Padua Stable, which is owned by Florida businessman Satish Sanan. Bradshaw said he reached a contract settlement with Padua on May 31.

On Tuesday, Padua Stable announced that it was changing its business relationship with Lukas. While Lukas will continue to train exclusively for Padua, the announcement said that Lukas will move his business headquarters from Padua's Florida farm to Lexington, Ky.

Bradshaw said Lukas asked him to stay as an assistant trainer, but that he declined.

"Padua gave me a great deal, and I don't think anybody can match it," he said. "Wayne offered me a job at my base salary and quite a commission."

During the time that Bradshaw worked for Lukas, Charismatic won the 1999 Kentucky Derby and was named Horse of the Year. Bradshaw also assisted Lukas during the 1980's at tracks in the Midwest and East.

"I probably wouldn't be where I'm at if I hadn't gone to work for him," Bradshaw said. "I attribute a lot of my success to him, but it's time to make a change."

In the 1990's, Bradshaw had a public stable that was based in Southern California.

He trained Artax to win the 1998 San Felipe Stakes, and had the horse into 1999. Later that year, Artax won the Breeders' Cup Sprint for trainer Louis Albertrani. Bradshaw also trained such major stakes winner as Hedonist, Latin Dancer, Petionville, Thisnearlywasmine, and Urbane.

On Wednesday, Bradshaw said he would like to have a stable at Arlington Park, Churchill Downs, Fair Grounds, and Lone Star Park. He did not know when he would open his stable or when his family, which includes his wife and 9-year-old daughter, would relocate.

"I think the quality of life will be better for us," Bradshaw said. "The day-to-day business in California is tough with workmen's compensation costs and the labor board. Southern California is a competitive market."

Futural hot horse in Californian

One of the leading contenders for Sunday's $500,000 Californian Stakes could have been claimed in February for $100,000.

Futural has turned into a surprise for owners Jess Miller and Jack Weitz and trainer Craig Dollase, who have watched the gelding win three consecutive stakes following a second in the $100,000 claimer in February at Santa Anita.

If Futural runs well enough in Sunday's Grade 2 Californian, he could start in the $750,000 Hollywood Gold Cup on July 1, Dollase said.

Futural won the Tokyo City Handicap in late March and followed with victories in two Grade 2 handicaps - the San Bernardino at Santa Anita on April 7 and the Mervyn LeRoy here on May 5. Those victories have been the highlight of a career that was interrupted last year when Futural underwent surgery to have a bone chip removed from his left ankle.

"We gave him an ample amount of time and that's why it has paid off so good," Dollase said.

Dollase will also start Jekyll and Hyde in the Californian Stakes, which is run over 1 1/8 miles. Other probables include Aptitude, City West, Irisheyesareflying, and Skimming. Aptitude and Skimming, who are trained by Bobby Frankel for Juddmonte Farms, will be coupled and will go favored.

Earlier this year, Jekyll and Hyde was fourth in two turf races.

"The Jekyll showed up on the turf and the Hyde showed up on the dirt," Dollase said. "He's training super. I'm shooting for the moon, but I think he could get part of it."

Purse boost for Norfolk, Oak Leaf

The guaranteed purses for the Norfolk and Oak Leaf Stakes, the leading 2-year-old races at the Oak Tree meeting, have each been raised $50,000, to $250,000.

Run over one mile, the Norfolk Stakes for 2-year-olds is scheduled for Sept. 29. The Oak Leaf Stakes, also at a mile, for 2-year-old fillies, is scheduled for Sept. 30. The dates are tentative, pending an agreement on dates between Oak Tree and the Thoroughbred Owners of California.

The races are key preps to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile and Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies, which this year will be held at Belmont Park on Oct. 27.

Despite the purse increases, this year's Norfolk and Oak Leaf will not be the richest runnings of either race. In the mid-1980's, both races were run as added-money races and were worth close to $300,000.