07/22/2010 4:31PM

Crew Leader looks to build on maiden win


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Crew Leader makes his much-anticipated second start in a $50,000 optional claimer for 3-year-olds, the feature race Saturday at Hastings. Run at 6 1/2 furlongs, the sprint drew six horses and goes as race 4 on the eight-race card that begins at 1:40 p.m. Pacific.

Crew Leader, trained by Dino Condilenios, was an impressive winner when he made his debut in a 6 1/2-furlong maiden special weight race on June 20, finishing in 1:17. The race stood up when two horses came back to win their next start, including Don’twaitforme, who won a $30,000 optional claiming maiden race with an 80 Beyer Speed Figure on July 4. Condilenios said he thinks Crew Leader could be a good one.

“I thought he was the best 3-year-old in the barn, and nothing he has done has changed my mind,” Condilenios said.

Mike Anderson, assistant trainer to Terry Clyde, said he likes the way Rocket Roan is coming up to the race. Rocket Roan won a maiden special weight race by 4 1/2 lengths in his debut last year. In his only start this season, he finished second to Jack Diamond Futurity winner Silly Fella on May 8. Rocket Roan has been in Clyde’s barn for a couple of weeks, and Anderson said he was impressed when Rocket Roan worked a bullet five furlongs in 58.80 seconds on July 16.

“That was a nice work for him, and he galloped out six furlongs in 1:12 and change, so he should be fit enough,” Anderson said.

Cherokee Notion should appreciate the move back to a sprint after tiring to finish third in his first try at a middle distance in a second-level allowance race July 9.

Charterhill, Simply Sam, and That’s Lucky round out the field.