09/30/2013 5:05PM

Breeders’ Cup Juvenile: O’Neill, Reddam return with Bond Holder

Shigeki Kikkawa
Bond Holder, winner of the FrontRunner Stakes, will make his next start in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

The connections of He’s Had Enough, who came within a head of upsetting last year’s $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, will be back for another try this year with Bond Holder, who went into last Saturday’s FrontRunner Stakes at Santa Anita a maiden and came out a Grade 1 winner.

Bond Holder, a son of Mineshaft owned by Paul Reddam and trained by Doug O’Neill, rallied from well off the pace under jockey Mario Gutierrez to win the FrontRunner by 2 1/4 lengths over favored Dance With Fate. Bond Holder was making his fifth career start, second around two turns, and first at 1 1/16 miles – the distance of the Juvenile.

“We’ve thought for a while that this guy would be better as the races went farther, and you can’t say that about a lot of your young horses,” said O’Neill, who won the 2005 Juvenile with Stevie Wonderboy. “Mario said he didn’t get warmed up until a mile into the race. That’s the kind of young horse you want going into the Breeders’ Cup and then their 3-year-old campaign.”

Last year, He’s Had Enough entered the Juvenile just a maiden winner from three starts, but was coming off an 11th-place finish in the Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland. This year, Bond Holder comes in off a series of progressively improving efforts and with a victory over the same Santa Anita surface the Juvenile will be run over Nov. 2.

[BREEDERS’ CUP 2013: See DRF’s top contenders]

“Bond Holder is coming into it stronger, sounder, and in a better place,” O’Neill said. “I’m as happy, if not more, going into this year than I was last year.”

Bond Holder moved to the top of a muddled West Coast 2-year-old division, which underwent major reconstruction last week.

The California-bred Tamarando, the Del Mar Futurity winner, finished third in the FrontRunner and is not likely to be supplemented to the Breeders’ Cup for a fee of $100,000.

Schoolofhardrocks and New Year’s Day, each winners of one-mile maiden races at Del Mar, missed the FrontRunner for different reasons. Schoolofhardrocks was off behind, and trainer David Hofmans said the horse will undergo some diagnostic tests to determine what the issue is. He said Monday that the horse is definitely out of the Breeders’ Cup.

New Year’s Day, trained by Bob Baffert, missed the FrontRunner due to a temperature. Baffert said he would try to train New Year’s Day up to the Juvenile. The Baffert-trained Can the Man finished fourth and Roundupthelute was last in the FrontRunner.

There are three major preps this weekend that will help determine the Juvenile field.

At Belmont Park, the Grade 1, $500,000 Champagne will include Hopeful winner Strong Mandate, sharp maiden winners Honor Code and Havana as well as Casiguapo, Debt Ceiling, Grand Arrival, and Long On Value.

The Champagne and the Grade 1 Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland, are both Win and You’re In races for the Juvenile.

The Futurity, run over Keeneland’s synthetic surface, is expected to attract Arlington-Washington Futurity winner Solitary Ranger, Swynford Stakes winner Conquest Titan, as well as a host of maiden winners and maidens.

Dale Romans, said Grade 3 Iroquois runner-up Smart Cover would miss that race as well as the rest of the year due to a shin injury. Romans could still be represented in the Futurity by Medal Count and/or Oogeley Eye.

Trainer Graham Motion was thinking of running Give No Quarter in the Breeders’ Futurity, but fears over being excluded should that race oversubscribe have re-routed him to Sunday’s Grade 3, $150,000 Grey Stakes at Woodbine.

Give No Quarter, a son of Tiz Wonderful owned and bred by Sagamore Farm, won a one-mile maiden race at Presque Isle Downs by 22 1/2 lengths on Sept. 17.