12/11/2013 4:00PM

CashCall Futurity: Tap It Rich gets another shot as juvenile

Barbara D. Livingston
Tap It Rich will make one last start as a 2-year-old in Saturday's Grade 1 CashCall Futurity.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Tap It Rich ran so well winning his debut at Santa Anita on Oct. 12 and worked so sharply into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, that he was sent off as the second choice in that race. But his inexperience, at which he had hinted in his training, betrayed him on the day, when he finished fifth behind four more experienced horses, including his Bob Baffert-trained stablemate, New Year’s Day, who won the Juvenile at 10-1.

New Year’s Day has been put away for the rest of the year, but Tap It Rich will get another chance to gain valuable experience, as well as a Grade 1 win, when he competes Saturday in the $750,000 CashCall Futurity at Betfair Hollywood Park.

Tap It Rich still acts like a colt who has much room for improvement. On Wednesday morning at Santa Anita, he galloped around the track with his head cocked to the side, as he is wont to do, though not as severely as in his preparation for the Breeders’ Cup. Perhaps he’s maturing out of it, but Baffert has been using a new bit on Tap It Rich in the hope jockey Mike Smith will have more control.

The bit is a long, straight bar that has a protrusion out of the left side of Tap It Rich’s mouth.

[CashCall Futurity: Get PPs, watch Saturday's card live]

“I first saw it used by Bobby Frankel,” Baffert said Wednesday morning at Santa Anita. “He had it specifically made. I borrowed one, then had some made immediately. It seems to be working with this colt. He’s worked in it, and he’s been galloping in it.”

Tap It Rich finished about 3 1/2 lengths behind New Year’s Day in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, which, like the CashCall Futurity, is at 1 1/16 miles.

“He got behind horses, got a little lost. He’s not very professional yet. He’ll get it,” Baffert said.

Tap It Rich will have to grow up in a hurry to have success Saturday in the CashCall Futurity, because the race was expected to have a large field, including Bond Holder, fourth in the Breeders’ Cup, as well as the unbeaten Shared Belief, impressive winner of the Hollywood Prevue last time out.

Mandella has pair for stakes

The Grade 2, $250,000 Hollywood Turf Cup for long-distance grass runners and the Grade 3, $150,000 Native Diver for older horses are the supporting stakes on Saturday’s card, and trainer Richard Mandella was set to be represented in both, with Segway in the Turf Cup and Setsuko in the Native Diver.

Segway will be making his stakes debut. He has won twice in five starts and comes off a victory in a first-level allowance at Santa Anita on Oct. 27.

“He won going a mile and a quarter. Now, we’ll try him at a mile and a half,” Mandella said.

Setsuko, best known for twice finishing second in the Santa Anita Handicap, has not raced since March 2012, but Mandella said Wednesday he is “doing good.”

Setsuko’s rivals were expected to include Drill, third in the overnight Big Bear at Santa Anita on Oct. 31.

Mandella also will be in action Sunday, in the $100,000 Playa del Rey for female sprinters. He will send out Rumor, who has not raced since finishing fourth in the A Gleam at Hollywood Park on July 13. Her rivals are expected to include Teddy’s Promise, whom Rumor defeated in the Grade 3 Las Flores at Santa Anita in March.

Coaches team up with horse

Joel Quenneville has won two Stanley Cups in the past four seasons as the coach of the Chicago Blackhawks, but he’s also a passionate racing fan, and that interest has now extended to ownership with Midnight Hawk, a 2-year-old colt who makes his debut in Friday’s fourth race.

“It’s his first horse. He’s so excited,” said Baffert, who trains Midnight Hawk for a partnership that includes Mike Tice, a former head coach of the Minnesota Vikings. Mike Pegram, who bred Midnight Hawk, also is part of the ownership group.

Midnight Hawk, a son of Midnight Lute, has had his last three works in company with Wynhurst, another Baffert first-time starter.

“They’ve both trained well,” Baffert said, “but seven and a half furlongs is a tough distance first time out.”

ted More than 1 year ago
Sheikinator -----------------over Bad Bob's nag over Oneil' nag
Mr. Ed More than 1 year ago
Hollendorfer might run one two in the CashCall with Shared Belief and Tamarando. Long shot in the super, Electric Eddie might outrun his odds.
Matt Banchero More than 1 year ago
Shared Belief ! Nor CAL ! Golden Gate Fields Roots! BOOM! Soon to be a household name!! Romps by 7
M More than 1 year ago
Like to see a DRF in depth article on bits and biting. 2-3 YR Old Stakes are pretty abundant in Dec. And hope SA will add a few more 2 & 3 YO claiming and allowance races for the last few days of 2013. Give owners one last bite at the 2YO and 3YO apple. Many of those horses turning 4 will have to drop into open claiming after the new year.
Cory Casebier More than 1 year ago
Kobes Back Romps Just Saying
jake More than 1 year ago
If you look at this race from a strict handicapping standpoint there are alot of plotters and closing type horses. Very few speed and front end horses. I think the runners out of the prevue stakes could all be near the front end honestly. My thought is that if Shared Belief can sit right off a pace from say Karma King or possibly Kobe's, he can shake away from all the closers. Depends how he handles the distance. I think he has the breeding to love the stretch out. Could be a freak, who knows. I think Rosario will be on the front end though knowing that all the closers will be looking for a pace and hoping that they can become speed of the speed and outlast Shared Belief after two nice mile works.
Joel More than 1 year ago
Shared Belief looks like the real deal. Will be Derby favorite after Saturday's win.
jake More than 1 year ago
I love this colt first off so know that before digging into my comment...he definitely does look like the real deal...crazy speed, very tactical, and has the breeding to go long from my favorite sire and a storm cat mare...but he hasn't faced top company in my opinion..that is my only concern... i hope he makes this field look stupid and goes on strong into the triple crown. As a young horseman I would love nothing more to see my first triple crown winner in this colt
Ana More than 1 year ago
This years derby winner will not run until 2014 I think this might be the first year in a long time that a 3 year old horse that didn't run at 2 will win the most overrated race of the year
Kendall Daniels More than 1 year ago
Try 132 or so years and that's unlikely. What's most likely is that the Derby winner has already broken his/her maiden and is in on the standard 2 prep then Derby schedule.
michael More than 1 year ago
The Ky Derby is hardly overrated. What planet did you come from, learn your history.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
Thanks for your contribution to the pools. I guess you had Verrazano last year.
Mark More than 1 year ago
Orb was a fluke. NEVER won another race.
Walter More than 1 year ago
I've been reading the debate between you both over the past months and enjoyed it. But honestly, Verrazano is not much to write about. I really wish they kept him running next year, I think he would've improved greatly.
liberalsuck123 . More than 1 year ago
Orb was no fluke. Holy Bull, Fountain of Youth, Florida Derby, Kentucky Derby. Wow..what a first half resume'. Ran 3rd in Belmont, loomed large after a long break in the Travers. I think the horse was a bit tired
liberalsuck123 . More than 1 year ago
Overrated? People with your intelligence shouldn't comment. It is the race every trainer and owner wants to win. The Derby favorite should be Shugs horse...an 8 week layoff and no pace he still won that weird Remsen. He's a beast
Jd Staton More than 1 year ago
kinda reminds me of flash back last year even looks like him. i dont see any tapit baby winning the derby
Christine Knapp More than 1 year ago
When Tap it Rich learns how to run, he will be a freak. He's your 2014 Derby champ!
Lawrence Macselwiney More than 1 year ago
Thats not too far fetched. He definitely has the ability, but he lacks the brain power at this point in time. I don't think Baffert and the owners should have run in the BC. I'm a fan of using the condition angle.
Lawrence Macselwiney More than 1 year ago
Baffert may have a super freak in Indianapolis.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
Wait to February Bro, Agree that Juvenile race might of ruin tap it rich