02/14/2011 1:49PM

Brethren doing fine after Davis romp

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Tom Cooley
Brethren, Ramon Dominguez up, wins the Sam F. Davis.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla.- Trainer Todd Pletcher reported that Brethren came out of his easy victory in Saturday’s Grade 3 Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs in good order, but remained noncommittal regarding when or where Brethren, younger brother of Super Saver, might start next.

Pletcher said on Sunday that he had spoken that morning to Elliott Walden, racing manager for the colt’s owners, WinStar Farm. “We just decided to let the dust settle a little, let him get back to the track and then look at all our options before deciding where he’ll go next. We talked about him having only two races before the Derby, and this win gives us some latitude and puts us in the position we want to be.”

KENTUCKY DERBY NEWS: Track all the 3-year-olds on the Triple Crown trail

Pletcher said if the decision is ultimately made to run Brethren just once more before the Kentucky Derby, the Grade 1, $1 million Florida Derby here on April 3 could end up being that choice. Pletcher and WinStar sent out Rule to finish third as the favorite in the 2010 Florida Derby.

 Brethren was a bit reluctant to load into the starting gate, then broke a step slowly before recovering quickly to dominate the Sam Davis by four widening lengths. He was the second of three consecutive stakes winners on the card for jockey Ramon Dominguez. The victory was the third in as many starts for Brethren, a son of Distorted Humor, who received a Beyer Speed Figure of 83 for his 3-year-old debut, a point lower than he had earned in each of his two wins at 2. Pletcher and WinStar have now combined to win four of the last six renewals of the Sam Davis.

“Obviously we have some things to work on at the gate, but all in all I thought it was a great effort.” said Pletcher. He didn’t break great but settled into a good rhythm down the backside and went impressively from there.”

Brethren earned $120,000 in graded-stakes money for his victory at Tampa.

Pletcher will not lack for action here over the next couple of weeks with his 3-year-old contingent, as he plans to send out the brilliant maiden winner Travelin Man in the seven furlong, Grade 2 Hutcheson on Feb. 26 and possibly his Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies runner-up, R Heat Lightning, in the Grade 2 Davona Dale at a mile the same day.

Both horses worked at Palm Meadows on Sunday, R Heat Lightning going a bullet half-mile in :47 and Travelin Man and easier four furlongs in 49.

Pletcher was also delighted with Uncle Mo’s workout Sunday, a half-mile in 47.36 seconds in company with stable mate Stay Thirsty.

“It was faster than we wanted to go but he did it so effortlessly and I was particularly pleased with the way he galloped out,” said Pletcher. “It’s amazing what a couple of works have done for his fitness level.”

Pletcher continues to target the second weekend in March for Uncle Mo’s 3-year-old debut.

Ward has filly still on target

One filly definite for the Davona Dale is Dancinginherdreams, trainer John Ward’s top 3-year-old prospect who suffered her first defeat in three starts when she finished second behind Pomeroys Pistol following an eventful trip under jockey Julien Leparoux in the Grade 2 Forward Gal earlier in the meet. Dancinginherdreams worked five furlongs in 1:01.40 at Palm Meadows on Monday.

“I was dead happy with her last race even though she got beat,” said Ward. “The rider was a little upset with himself after the race, but the filly showed me a new dimension that day, the ability to chase horses down. In her first two races she just kind of blew to the lead and galloped from there. This time she got down and running to catch that horse on the lead and showed me a lot of grit.”

Dutrow may have second Dubai runner

Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. already has one invitation to Dubai World Cup day, for Stradivinsky in the $1 million Al Quoz Sprint on the turf. Now he’s looking to receive a second one, with I Want Revenge’s name on it, to the $10 million World Cup.

“They told us they couldn’t give us an invitation yet but to stand by and be ready to go, have all the bloodwork ready, just in case,” Dutrow said Monday. “Although it could take as long as one month before we know.”

I Want Revenge earned himself a possible trip to the World Cup after a solid fourth-place finish behind Giant Oak in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap earlier this month. The outing was the first for I Want Revenge in more than five months.

“I thought he ran real big in the Donn, especially considering he needed that race really bad coming off the layoff,” said Dutrow. “I think he’s going to run a real big race next time. He’s going to move forward big-time off that effort.”

Dutrow said he is considering the one-mile, Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Handicap here on March 12 for I Want Revenge’s next start but would pass the race if he is still under consideration for the World Cup.

“I don’t want to run him here and then find out we got invited to Dubai a couple of days later,” said Dutrow. “Besides I have Yawanna Twist for the Gulfstream Park Handicap and I think he’s going to run real big in there too.”

Dutrow said if I Want Revenge doesn’t go to Dubai, he might consider the $1 million Charles Town Classic, a Grade 3 stakes, on April 16.

◗ To Honor and Serve breezed five furlongs in 1:03 at Payson Park on Wednesday for trainer Bill Mott as he continues to prepare for his 3-year-old debut later this month in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth.