08/03/2007 11:00PM

Colic sidelines Price Tag


DEL MAR, Calif. - Price Tag, winner of the Grade 1 Matriarch Stakes in November, was scratched from Saturday's $400,000 John Mabee Handicap after a bout with colic earlier in the week, according to Humberto Ascanio, trainer Bobby Frankel's assistant.

Ascanio said Saturday morning that Price Tag began suffering from colic late Thursday and was treated that evening with medications that prevented her from starting Saturday. Ascanio said the illness subsided Friday.

"The filly was uncomfortable" on Thursday, Ascanio said. "I called the vet and he said she was colicking, but not bad. I had to do what was best for the filly."

Owned by Juddmonte Farms, Price Tag has won 4 of 13 starts and $689,737. She is winless in two stakes this year, a second in the Grade 1 Gamely Stakes in May and a third in the Grade 2 CashCall Mile on July 6.

Price Tag, 4, was the 6-5 morning-line favorite for the Grade 1 Mabee. Ascanio said she will be considered for the $250,000 Palomar Handicap over 1 1/16 miles on turf on Sept. 1.

The Tin Man, After Market work slowly

After Market and The Tin Man, two leading contenders for the $1 million Arlington Million on Saturday, had slow workouts a few hours apart at Del Mar on Saturday.

After Market, winner of three consecutive stakes, worked six furlongs in 1:18 on turf under jockey Alex Solis. After Market, not known for quick workout times, worked alone.

"He doesn't need a super workout, especially him," Solis said. "He likes to goof off. He's full of confidence and you want to keep him happy."

Owned by Marty and Pam Wygod and trained by John Shirreffs, After Market won the Grade 3 Inglewood and Grade 1 Charles Whittingham handicaps at Hollywood Park earlier this year and the Grade 1 Eddie Read Handicap here on July 22.

The Tin Man, winner of the 2006 Arlington Million, breezed six furlongs in 1:17.60 on Del Mar's synthetic Polytrack surface, the second slowest of 19 recorded works at the distance. The Tin Man worked in company with another horse trained by Richard Mandella.

"They went too slow the first half," Mandella said. "I gave instructions not to go too fast and I got my wish."

Mandella said The Tin Man ran the final quarter-mile in 24 seconds.

A 9-year-old gelding owned by Ralph and Aury Todd, The Tin Man won the Grade 1 Shoemaker Breeders' Cup Mile in May and was second to Out of Control in the American Handicap on June 30.

Bigger payday for Bold Chieftain

Bold Chieftain was an intended starter in the Joseph Grace Handicap at the Sonoma County Fair in Santa Rosa on Saturday until the purse was hacked from $100,000 to $50,000 earlier this year.

So trainer William Morey Jr. redirected Bold Chieftain to Friday's $136,200 California Dreamin' Handicap at Del Mar and was rewarded with a lucrative payday.

"It made us some money," Morey said.

Bold Chieftain won the richest race of his career in the California Dreamin' for statebreds, pulling away in the final furlong to win by 1 1/4 lengths over Epic Power. Ridden by Russell Baze, Bold Chieftain ($6.80) ran 1 1/16 miles on turf in a quick 1:39.98, just missing Mea Domina's 2006 track record of 1:39.67.

"He was all business today," Morey said in the winner's circle. "He ran straight and strong."

Epic Power, winner of three stakes for statebred turf horses in the last year, finished second, a length in front of Lucky J.H, who set the pace in his first start in 14 months.

Bold Chieftain is likely to stay on turf for his next start, possibly at Bay Meadows in September, Morey said. Owned by a partnership, Bold Chieftain, 4, has won 6 of 11 starts and $306,775.

Morey thinks the colt is in the best form of his career.

"This year, he's put on weight in the right spots," Morey said.

Comical Vacation seeks better trip

The rough trip that Comical Vacation had in her career debut in the California Thoroughbred Breeders Association Stakes on July 20 still stings jockey Michael Baze.

The 2-year-old filly was in traffic in the stretch after a tough start and was only beaten two lengths in the race over 5 1/2 furlongs under Baze. With a clean trip, she might have threatened race winner Treadmill.

The loss will make Comical Vacation the favorite in a $53,000 maiden race for California-bred 2-year-old fillies over 5 1/2 furlongs in Monday's fourth race.

"The way she ran the first time, if she breaks clean, she should be pretty tough," said Baze, who retains the mount.

The maiden race has drawn a field of six, including the well-regarded first-time starters Amybelle and Bronze Baby, and North Rodeo and Unusually Hot, who were second and third against a similar field on July 23.