11/17/2012 12:36PM

Churchill Downs: Groupie Doll, Shackleford work for holiday week stakes

Churchill Downs/Reed Palmer Photography
Groupie Doll, works a half-mile at Churchill Downs on Saturday and will likely run in the Cigar Mile.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Groupie Doll and Shackleford were both out for serious work Saturday morning at Churchill Downs when prepping for likely starts this coming weekend.

Both 4-year-olds went a half-mile over a fast and tight main track, with Groupie Doll going in 48.20 seconds just a few minutes before Shackleford went in 47.40. Their respective trainers said both are very likely to make their first starts since the Breeders’ Cup this weekend.

Buff Bradley said he is “almost sure” he will send Groupie Doll to Aqueduct for the Grade 1, $350,000 Cigar Mile on Saturday, pending release of the weight assignments. Bradley said he was optimistic those weights would not overly penalize Groupie Doll as a filly taking on male rivals. “I’m sure they’ll be fair and we’ll head on up there,” he said.

Dale Romans was more equivocal when saying Shackleford will run in either the Cigar Mile or the Grade 1, $400,000 Clark Handicap, the Churchill fall showcase set for its 138th running Friday. He said a final decision may not be made until entries are taken this week.

Groupie Doll and Shackleford are coming off disparate BC results at Santa Anita. Groupie Doll stormed to her fifth straight victory when taking the Filly and Mare Sprint in sensational fashion, while Shackleford, a multiple Grade 1-winning earner of more than $2.8 million, stumbled from the gate before finishing seventh in the Dirt Mile.

Whatever happens this weekend, Groupie Doll will get a rest afterward, either back home in Kentucky or in south Florida before racing again at 5, while Shackleford will be making his final start before heading off to stud duty at Darby Dan Farm near Lexington.

Meanwhile, weights for the 1 1/8-mile Clark were released Friday, with Game On Dude being assigned 125 pounds by racing secretary Ben Huffman. Game On Dude, however, will not come from California to run, and that means Shackleford, with 120, would start as the highweight if Romans opts to stay home.

Other Clark probables, with weights, are Neck ‘n Neck, 119; Pool Play, 118; Bourbon Courage, 117; Cease, 117; Take Charge Indy, 117; Lunar Victory, 116; Eye of the Leopard, 115; Mission Impazible, 115; and Fast Falcon, 113. Several more from a nominations list of 30 are regarded as possible, including Infrattini, Middie, and Stealcase. Entries will be drawn Tuesday.

Billy Spathanas More than 1 year ago
I am posting this about 20 before Post Time for the Clark Handicap. The only horse in this race having a race over this track is the Mark Casse trained STEALCASE 15/1 ML is now 48/1. He is 4 for 4 in the money at Churchill with his best beyer# of 100...Those odds are crazy good to play.. Definatly playable at those overlay odds, Load up on Stealcase people or maybe not....
Forego137 More than 1 year ago
After shackelford won the Cigar Mile last year he was done as a race horse, he should havd been retired. Besides I don't see what all thd fuss is about Shackelford has run 3 or 4 good races and that was it since then all he has done is run up the track and has burned alot of peoples money betting on a horse that should have been retired a long time ago. Overrated horse IMO and I for one will be glad to see him retire before he gets hurt.
Perl More than 1 year ago
I agree he is slightly overrated. People like a nice grand chestnut that likes to mix it up on the front end. But he did come back after the Cigar Mile to win a G1 on Derby Day this year, so he wasn't exactly finished yet!
Perl More than 1 year ago
Neck n Neck should crush this field if he is not exhausted from a long campaign.
DRFInsidePost More than 1 year ago
Neck n Neck is hurt and out of the race. Marty tweeted about it earlier, it will be in today's article about the draw of the Clark. Left front sesamoid injury, out at least six months.
Perl More than 1 year ago
I have to downgrade his chances off this latest development.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Thought he was the won to beat also with Shack n Indy duel..even though I love shack, dont like two turns..Bourbon Courage nice w Shack, Falcon, TCI...
Infinity More than 1 year ago
Infinity More than 1 year ago
The owners of Dullahan have made Roman's look stupid when it is fact the owner. Synthetic MONSTER you Morons!!!!!
Perl More than 1 year ago
He should prep for the Dubai World Cup. And I suspect he will.
B More than 1 year ago
Is this sucker horse really going to run again next year? I am a huge supporter of quality horses running more often with less workouts and running as long as they are fit for the good of the sport, but Dullahan is only a quality horse on poly and needs to stop draining betters of their money. This horse has been a bug up my butt for a long time.
worbleworble More than 1 year ago
CD is Shack's best track. We should also not forget that he led the first 9.5 furlongs in last year's Kentucky Derby. Would love to see him in the winner's circle one last time.
Wesley Wright More than 1 year ago
Shackleford is way past his best especially in good company. His best distrance should be 6-7f. The connections have overraced him this year. My word to them, "race him one more time this year going 7f and retire him." I hope he runs a good race in his next start.
Richard More than 1 year ago
Shacleford was my favorite three year old last year and has been an amazing horse to watch and wager on. I remember watching him in the Post Parade for the BC Dirt Mile and something really had him in a tizzy. He settled down once Dominguez got on him but never have I seen him so troubled. I was sure they were going to scratch him. I hope he races in the Clark on a good dirt track. I will surely miss that great champion of a horse that Shacleford is. A devote fan!
Perl More than 1 year ago
Unless you had him bottom-wheeled in the Florida Derby, he hasn't been that much fun to wager on. He tends to get overbet and is hardly a win machine. Nice horse though.
Billy Spathanas More than 1 year ago
Shackleford is a really nice horse. It would have been nice to see him win a few more races in his Past Races. Personally, I think Mr Romans was a little confused where to spot him. And not to mention how he drilled Shackleford. Does not matter where Shackleford races next, he is a tired horse period. I wish him well after his next and final race as a Race Horse. Shackleford will be missed by his followers....
Nish Kwe More than 1 year ago
Romans deserves a swift kick in the *** .Shackleford deserves to retire NOW! Apparently there is not enough money for some people...its about the horse HELLOOOO!
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Dale Romans was not confused. Leave Boston once in a while you may learn that there are wealthy owners to answer to who actually pay bills.. He didn't like Saratoga and two turns doesn't help his current issue..Reading the form does not give you reason or knowledge to judge. You are criticizing from ignorance. We agree Shack will be missed
Billy Spathanas More than 1 year ago
Listen Tom, How about Gulfstream, Laurel, How"s Tampa and Saratoga to add. I am not ignorant,,far from it. Obviously he was confused, How do you race a Grade 1 horse like Shack at 9 different distances, please. And for you Tom to say to me leave Boston once in awhile, I would say that you are Ignorant. You do not even know me, or do you? I hope I am wrong saying he is a tired horse, but I doubt it.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
I left 8 yrs ago. Knew most on backside. Became assistant in NY, Kentucky, Florida, Ireland to BC winners..luckily... Have met Romans.. You shouldn't judge the mans ability. He is top notch. Most of his peers agree. It's a different game vs. claiming ranks. That is my point.
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
Really forward to see Take Charge Indy come back, I think he wil be one of the ones next year.