10/12/2011 1:21PM

Breeders' Cup: Secret Circle looks like favorite in Juvenile Sprint

Shigeki Kikkawa
Secret Circle wins the Jack Goodman Stakes by 5 1/4 lengths.

Even before last week’s holiday weekend, the inaugural $500,000 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Sprint on Nov. 4 was appearing to lack the depth of richer, more prestigious Breeders’ Cup races.

Now, following the dominance displayed by Secret Circle in winning the Jack Goodman Stakes at Santa Anita on Monday, in which he established himself as a clear favorite for the Juvenile Sprint, significant growth to the field would appear unlikely.

Having run a pair of 97 Beyer Speed Figures in two starts, Secret Circle appears to be one of the fastest juveniles in the country, let alone among those in the Juvenile Sprint, a race that is attracting mostly second-tier juveniles and those short on experience.

The race did pick up an addition this week when trainer Allen Milligan stated his desire to bring Jake Mo from Remington Park to the race.
A wide third in the Kip Deville Stakes last Friday, but already a stakes-winning sprinter, Milligan said he was pleased with Jake Mo’s effort. He plans to bring Jake Mo from Remington to train at Churchill Downs in the early to middle part of next week.

Despite having made just a single start, Me and My Gals could end up gaining entry into the Juvenile Sprint, which at this early stage looks as if it might not be oversubscribed. Me and My Gals won a maiden race at Hoosier on Sept. 1, leading throughout to win by 8 1/4 lengths and running a 95 Beyer.

He subsequently missed time due to a minor foot injury, trainer Dale Romans said, but is in good health again and worked five furlongs in a bullet 59.80 seconds Monday at Churchill Downs.

Although a prep for the Juvenile Sprint still remains in Kentucky – Saturday’s Anniversary Stakes at Keeneland – Romans chose not to even consider him for that race.

“I’ll just train him up to the race instead,” he said.

Going in the Anniversary is useful field of sprinters, although a few notable ones are not Breeders’ Cup nominated. Others act like they may prefer turf or synthetic over dirt, the surface over which the Juvenile Sprint will be run at six furlongs.

Of those entered, Norm’s Passion looks like the leading prospect to continue on to the Juvenile Sprint, provided he runs well.

Removed from consideration for the Juvenile Sprint this week were stakes winners Hello Prince and Gypsy Robin. Hello Prince will remain at Calder for the Nov. 12 Jack Prince Juvenile Stakes, trainer Daniel Pita said, and Gypsy Robin will be freshened after being “not quite right,” trainer Wesley Ward said.