09/04/2007 12:00AM

Del Mar Futurity preview


Del Mar - Race 9
7 Furlongs (Polytrack)
Del Mar Futurity (Grade 1)
Purse $250,000.

DRILL DOWN was a very professional maiden winner in good time on July 28, and two horses have returned from that race to graduate. He rated kindly while on the rail for the opening quarter-mile before angling to the two path for a clear run at the pacesetter. He kept to his task nicely in the lane, and his good tactical speed should aid him greatly in this spot. Expect another good performance from stalking range.
GOOD MAN DAN showed excellent speed in taking his maiden last month, but will stretch out beyond 5 1/2 furlongs for the first time in his career, and may face pace pressure from KANAN DUME, OVEREXTENDED, WHATEVER WHENEVER, and DREWTHEGENTLEMAN. He should be prominent when they turn for home, however, and offers value at his morning line odds of 15-1. GEORGIE BOY removes the blinkers after setting the pace in the Best Pal, but he raced very greenly without the hood in his career debut, and the Best Pal came back slow. He may opt for rating tactics under Garrett Gomez, and the recent bullet workout (presumably without blinkers) should have him ready for this start.
OVEREXTENDED didn't have an easy trip after breaking from the rail on August 19, but he put in a nice run to be beaten only a length. He's a maiden facing winners, but the $400,000 purchase has some ability, and can improve with a better start. LEONIDES just missed in the Hollywood Juvenile Championship, and should benefit from the expected solid pace up front. He hasn't raced since July 4, though, and there are some gaps in the work tab to consider. KANAN DUME pressed moderate fractions en route to his maiden score over Good Man Dan, but draws inside the other speeds, and will have to hustle to avoid traffic problems. Undefeated SALUTE THE SARGE has stalking ability and class, and the recent bullet workout indicates he's retained his good form. The Best Pal was a slow race, however, and he may be vulnerable trying seven furlongs for the first time in this bulky field.

1. Drill Down
2. Good Man Dan
3. Georgie Boy