07/06/2013 5:25PM

Calder: Bahamian Squall gives Fawkes his third Smile victory

Coady Photography
Bahamian Squall earned a guaranteed berth in the Breeders' Cup Sprint by winning the Smile under Luis Saez.

MIAMI - David Fawkes, who won the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Sprint with Big Drama, is well on his way to going back again after his Bahamian Squall rallied to a 1 3/4-length victory over reigning Sprint champion Trinniberg in the $350,000 Smile Handicap, the co-feature on Saturday’s rich Summit of Speed program at Calder.  

The Grade 2 Smile is a Win and You’re In event for the Breeders’ Cup Sprint. Bahamian Squall’s victory was Fawkes’s third in the Smile, following  Big Drama during the summer of his championship season and Forty One Carats 10 years earlier.

Bahamian Squall was coming off a disappointing fourth-place finish as the 6-5 favorite in the Ponche Handicap, the main local prep for the Smile, four weeks earlier. Fawkes takes full blame for that defeat.

“No discredit to the last ride, those were my instructions to have the horse close to the pace and Juan [Leyva] rode the horse exactly to those instructions,” said Fawkes. “Every race played to speed during the day except for that race. I don’t think he could have lost the race if I hadn’t screwed up the instructions.”

[BREEDERS' CUP CHALLENGE: Win and You’re In schedule and results]

Bahamian Squall was reunited in the Smile with his regular jockey, Luis Saez, who had ridden him in all seven starts prior to the Ponche. Saez allowed Bahamian Squall to settle just off the early pace set by Cajun Breeze and pressed by both Artefacto and Trinniberg. Bahamian Squall moved readily when roused leaving the turn, took command outside the tiring leaders leaving the eighth pole, and gradually edged clear.

Trinniberg, who had finished far back in his only two starts since winning the 2012 Breeders’ Cup Sprint at Santa Anita, was reserved just off the early leaders and had to steady along in traffic on a couple of occasions during the opening half-mile of the six-furlong Smile. Jockey Willie Martinez angled Trinniberg down to the inside and they reached even terms with Bahamian Squall nearing mid-stretch but proved no match while digging in gamely to best the late charging Jackson Bend by a nose for second.

Off the Jak, Trinniberg’s uncoupled stablemate, broke down early in the race.

Bahamian Squall was one of two horses Fawkes ran in the Smile for owner-breeder Donald Dizney. He also ran Bahamian’s Squall’s  older brother Apriority, who finished a non-threatening 10th.

Bahamian Squall, a 4-year-old son of Gone West, completed six furlongs in 1:10.21 over a fast track and paid $16.60.

“What this horse did today was pretty much what we expected,” said Fawkes. “Off that last race, he just kept getting better and better and better.”

Fawkes said the fact he knows he’s got a definite starting slot awaiting Bahamian Squall in the Breeders’ Cup makes the process of getting him there over the next five months a lot easier.

“Knowing we don’t have to press just to get in is a plus,” said Fawkes. “Especially since this horse does so well fresh.”