Updated on 09/16/2011 6:42AM

Bump in Siphonic's plans

Benoit & Associates
Whoops!: Siphonic (second from right), the 1-10 favorite, stumbles at the break in the Santa Catalina. He made a strong move on the final turn but faded in the last furlong.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Siphonic, the beaten 1-10 favorite, did not suffer any injuries during his acrobatic start in Saturday's * at Santa Anita, trainer David Hofmans said on Monday morning. Both Siphonic and the colt who upset him, Labamta Babe, will continue down the trail toward the Kentucky Derby.

Labamta Babe and Siphonic have traded punches in two meetings so far, and though they will be on similar training schedules for the next six weeks at Hollywood Park, their paths after that may diverge.

Both Hofmans and Bobby Frankel, who trains Labamta Babe, said their colts would not run during the month of February. After that, they are scheduled to have two preps before the May 4 Kentucky Derby.

But those starts, at least the first of two, could come at opposite ends of the country. Hofmans is sticking with his plan of keeping Siphonic in California throughout the winter. His next start will be in the Grade 2, $250,000 San Felipe Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on March 17, followed by the Grade 1, $750,000 Santa Anita Derby on April 6.

Labamta Babe could run in the San Felipe, but Frankel is also strongly considering going to Gulfstream Park in Florida that weekend for the Grade 1, $1 million Florida Derby on March 16.

"I might want to go for a million dollars, instead of $250,000," Frankel said Monday. "I haven't made up my mind yet. He won't run in February, I know that."

Labamta Babe ran the best race of his career, earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 104 while winning by 5 1/2 lengths under jockey Kent Desormeaux. He has now raced three times for Frankel, who acquired him privately for owner Ed Gann after the colt won once and finished second twice in three starts in Kentucky.

For Frankel, Labamta Babe finished third in the Hollywood Prevue going seven furlongs, then was fourth, after setting the pace, in the Hollywood Futurity going 1 1/16 miles.

A change in tactics benefited Labamta Babe in the 1 1/16-mile Santa Catalina. Instead of being allowed to roll along on the lead, he settled just off the flank of the leaders, then powered clear when asked for his best at the top of the stretch.

Siphonic, who earned a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 104 when he beat Labamta Babe in the Hollywood Futurity, lost his best chance at the start of the Santa Catalina when he stumbled badly. He made a strong move on the final turn while four paths wide, but understandably lost his punch in the final furlong.

Hofmans said he was relieved to find that Siphonic did not injure himself at the start of the race.

"He didn't hit himself, he didn't grab himself," Hofmans said. "He looks great."

Siphonic has now won three times in five starts. His only loss other than the Santa Catalina came in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, in which he finished third, behind both Johannesburg and Repent.


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