11/05/2012 2:58PM

Breeders' Cup Juvenile runner-up He's Had Enough could be O'Neill's next Derby horse

Barbara D. Livingston
Even though He's Had Enough (left) was defeated by Shanghai Bobby in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, his performance impressed trainer Doug O'Neill.

ARCADIA, Calif. – After a wild journey down the Triple Crown trail in 2012, the connections of dual classic winner I’ll Have Another could be back for more in 2013 with He’s Had Enough.

In his first start on dirt in Saturday’s $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita, He’s Had Enough finished a rallying second, falling a head short at the wire to the undefeated Shanghai Bobby after encountering traffic around the turn.

The result was the most encouraging performance to date from He’s Had Enough, a powerfully built gray son of Tapit who was coming off a troubled-trip 11th-place finish in the Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland last month.

“He’s the real deal,” trainer Doug O’Neill said Sunday morning. “He’s got the pedigree, he’s got the body, he’s got the stride, he’s got the stamina. He’s been kind of a Playboy mentally; you could just see the light starting to go on in his head. I was very proud how mature he was [Saturday] with the paddock, handling all the people.”

O’Neill trains He’s Had Enough for Paul Reddam, and the horse was ridden by Mario Gutierrez. That same trio won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness this year with I’ll Have Another, who was diagnosed with a tendon injury and retired on the eve of the Belmont Stakes. Though He’s Had Enough isn’t related to I’ll Have Another, Reddam named him as a play on words off I’ll Have Another.

In Saturday’s Juvenile, Gutierrez had He’s Had Enough along the rail for most of the race. Around the far turn, Gutierrez had to steady the horse a couple of times and got shuffled back before rallying in the stretch. He couldn’t get past Shanghai Bobby, the 7-5 favorite who was capping an undefeated season that included victories in the Grade 2 Hopeful and Grade 1 Champagne.

“That was kind of a smaller version of a Derby-like experience,” O’Neill said. “Taking the kickback, having to check and come back through on the inside and then get out. We’re all bummed that he didn’t win, but just so proud of him and so excited of the possibilities.”

O’Neill said that He’s Had Enough came out of the race “in great shape.” O’Neill said either He’s Had Enough or Know More, who finished 13th in Saturday’s Juvenile Turf, could be a candidate for the $750,000 CashCall Futurity at Betfair Hollywood Park on Dec. 15.

O’Neill said Know More, who finished second to Power Broker in the Grade 1 FrontRunner Stakes on Sept. 29, could return to dirt at some point next year. He, too, is owned by Reddam.

“Know More threw in a clunker [Saturday], but he’s a quality son of a gun,” O’Neill said. “If I didn’t have He’s Had Enough, I’d be excited that Know More could take his place.”

O’Neill also has Goldencents, runner-up to Shanghai Bobby in the Champagne at Belmont, for a partnership that includes Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino. O’Neill plans to run Goldencents in the $1  million Delta Downs Jackpot at Delta Downs on Nov. 17.

“He’s a horse who hasn’t shut it off,” O’Neill said. “Once he figures it out and he can shut if off for a little bit, I don’t think distance will be a problem. Right now, it is because he’s so precocious and wants to go.”

O’Neill had the ride of a lifetime campaigning I’ll Have Another to an undefeated 3-year-old season and winning the Kentucky Derby and Preakness. He wants to go on that ride again.

“I think the great experience we had, we’ll be even better prepared,” O’Neill said. “It’ll be a lot of fun to try that again; it was such a great experience. You get a little taste of that and you want to do that annually.”

Shanghai Bobby to winter in Florida

On Monday, Shanghai Bobby was expected to ship from Southern California to the Palm Meadows training center in south Florida. Trainer Todd Pletcher said he would give the Harlan’s Holiday colt a little freshening before plotting out a 3-year-old campaign. Shanghai Bobby is owned by Starlight Stable and Coolmore.

One of the first 2-year-olds to come to Pletcher at Palm Meadows this year, Shanghai Bobby started his 2-year-old campaign at Aqueduct in April and won at distances from 4  1/2 furlongs to 1 1/16 miles. Though it remains to be seen how far Shanghai Bobby wants to run, he continues to impress his trainer with his tenacity.

“The amazing thing about him, he’s always finding more,” Pletcher said. “He looked like a tired, beaten horse at the top of the stretch. The rest of the field came to him, he dug deep and found some reserve.”