10/30/2011 5:21PM

Breeders' Cup: Sidney's Candy learning to relax for Mile

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Barbara D. Livingston
Sidney's Candy appears to be over his problems with a quarter crack, working four furlongs in 49.82 seconds Sunday at Churchill Downs.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The quarter crack Sidney’s Candy had coming out of his third-place finish in the Oct. 8 Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland has been brought under control, and after working a half-mile in 49.82 seconds in company with the 2-year-old Finale on Sunday morning, Sidney’s Candy is on track to start in the Breeders’ Cup Mile on Saturday.

Sidney’s Candy, trained by Todd Pletcher for WinStar Farm, was cross-entered in the Dirt Mile as his second preference, but will stick to turf racing this weekend.

On paper, Sidney’s Candy, whose lone win this season came in the Fourstardave at Saratoga, appears to be the main speed of the Mile. He set the pace in last year’s race before fading to sixth, and has been the first-call leader in all 11 of his two-turn start,  save the 2010 Kentucky Derby, when Sidney’s Candy raced second in the early stages. But the aim in recent works, including Sunday’s, has been to encourage Sidney’s Candy to relax when he begins running fast, and Pletcher said later Sunday morning that the horse is not strictly a need-the-lead type.

“He went off very relaxed and finished up strong today,” Pletcher said of Sunday’s work. “This looks like a Mile with plenty of early speed in it, and he needs to relax.”

That thought in mind, Sidney’s Candy’s connections are hoping to draw outside the other potential speed in the Mile when entries are taken and post positions assigned for the BC races on Monday. Courageous Cat and Get Stormy are front-running sorts, and the connections of English invader Strong Suit have said they are considering a front-end trip for their horse.