05/11/2005 11:00PM

Buzzards Bay will point for Belmont


INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Buzzards Bay, the Santa Anita Derby winner who finished fifth in the Kentucky Derby last weekend, returned to training at Santa Anita on Thursday and is being pointed for the $1 million Belmont Stakes on June 11, trainer Jeff Mullins said.

Buzzards Bay jogged two miles on Thursday. In the Kentucky Derby, Buzzards Bay was sent off at 46-1 and finished 6 1/4 lengths behind Giacomo after racing wide on both turns.

"I thought it was a good performance," Mullins said.

Mullins said Buzzards Bay would remain at Santa Anita until the days before the Belmont Stakes, which is run at 1 1/2 miles. Before the Kentucky Derby, Mullins kept Buzzards Bay at Santa Anita until May 4, shipping to Churchill Downs only three days before the race.

Mullins had a winner at Churchill Downs last week - Mighty Beau in the five-furlong Aegon Turf Sprint. A 6-year-old gelding, Mighty Beau could make his next start in England.

Two races at the Royal Ascot meeting in York are possible - the King's Stand Stakes at five furlongs on June 14 or the Golden Jubilee Stakes at six furlongs on June 18. The Royal Ascot meeting is being run at York Racecourse while the Ascot grandstand is being rebuilt.

Court injures hand, takes day off

Jockey Jon Court, tied for fourth in the Hollywood Park standings with eight wins through Wednesday, took off his four scheduled mounts Thursday after complaining of swelling in a hand.

According to his agent, Tom Knust, Court injured the hand while warming up Lertxundi before the second race on Wednesday. When the first-time starter stumbled, Court's hand was forcibly jerked, Knust said. Court rode two more races later on Wednesday.

Court did not work horses on Thursday after feeling discomfort, Knust said. Precautionary X-rays were scheduled for Thursday afternoon.

"When he woke up, it had a little filling," Knust said. "He felt he should have it looked at."

Dime supers make debut

Dime superfectas were offered at Hollywood Park for the first time on Wednesday. Wednesday's average superfecta pool was $94,599, 32 percent higher than the previous Wednesday, but lower than the $121,054 average superfecta pool on the first Wednesday of the meeting, April 27. Only three superfectas were offered that day.

Five superfectas were offered on Wednesday, with pools ranging from $68,344 to $144,796. The $1 payoffs ranged from $116.10 to $2,522.20. The bet is offered on races with eight or more betting interests at the start of wagering.

Track president Rick Baedeker said more data are needed to assess the bet's impact on handle.

"It's too early to tell from a statistical standpoint," Baedeker said. "We've had sufficient time to know that they are well-received by the fans. We haven't had any objection to the 10-cent option.

"I think it's a simple case of giving the player a little extra edge. I look at it from an entertainment standpoint. It gives them a chance to play a ticket that he or she otherwise couldn't afford."

Baedeker said Hollywood Park did not extensively promote the bet for Wednesday, but intends to advertise more in coming weeks.

"We wanted to make sure that it worked, that the tote could handle it and the self-service machines could handle it," he said. "We'll start pumping it up.

"The best time to draw conclusions is at the end of a meeting. It will take time to make the everyday fan aware of it and make sure they understand it. We should know in three weeks whether it's moving handle one way or another."