08/02/2012 4:41PM

Del Mar: O'Neill sending first-timer in Best Pal


DEL MAR, Calif. - Every 2-year-old colt that starts for owner Paul Reddam and trainer Doug O’Neill this summer will be heavily scrutinized.

Their runners have earned such attention because Reddam and O’Neill won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes earlier this year with the now-retired I’ll Have Another.

Last summer, I’ll Have Another finished second in the Grade 2 Best Pal Stakes at Del Mar. In Sunday’s $150,000 Best Pal Stakes over 6 1/2 furlongs, Reddam and O’Neill are running the first-time starter Know More.

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It is an assignment that O’Neill thinks Know More can handle.

“It’s not the conventional way, but what a really nice colt,” O’Neill said.

Purchased for $210,000 at the Barretts March sale of 2-year-olds in training, Know More is by Lion Heart. He has worked steadily in recent weeks and will be ridden by Garrett Gomez on Sunday.

“Garrett has worked him a few times and has gotten to know him well,” O’Neill said.

There are two open maiden special weight races for 2-year-olds at Del Mar on Saturday. O’Neill considered running Know More in those races, but has opted for the more lucrative Best Pal. Reddam and O’Neill will start Kripke, a colt by Majestic Warrior, in one of those maiden races.

“At this time of year, the stakes and the maidens, there really isn’t that much difference,” O’Neill said. “He acts like the best, so we’ll put him in the stakes.”

Asked if he thinks Know More has the ability to start in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita in November, O’Neill said it is possible.

“He acts like a special colt,” he said. “Hopefully he can do in the afternoon what he does in the morning.”

The Best Pal Stakes has a field of eight. The favorite will be Scherer Magic, who won the Grade 3 Hollywood Juvenile Championship at Betfair Hollywood Park on July 14.


Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well, who "Know More" now? NOT "The Baron", that's for sure
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Yes, I wonder how The Baron likes his crow. No matter- If he's as well versed in the culinary arts as he is in the art of 2YO thoroughbred training he should be able to whip up a delicious repast in spite of ... oh yeah. Scratch that.
Jim Fields More than 1 year ago
gogo may be #1 if he keeps his nose clean and stays away from pval
Jerome Moynihan More than 1 year ago
"unconventional"is an understatement.I think .If this colt doesn't develop as expected then Oneil's "program" will take major hits from arm-chair trainers world-wide.
Steve Schnell More than 1 year ago
This is O'Neill code for "He's really taking to the 'program' that we have here".
Big Jeff More than 1 year ago
I don't know about "code". But doug ONeill does run a class A "program". And he is actually a little conservative. He must think the world of this colt, knowing how he will be scrutinized.
The Baron More than 1 year ago
This is an ignorant if not arrogant move - regardless of a horses morning ability - it is best to run them through their conditions. It gives the horse racing experience and lets them develop better. These guys are making a mistake - Stakes company is not the same as an Open Maiden - what are they smoking?? This is a quick and easy way to destroy a young horse - have seen it before. You would never see Bobby Frankel or Charlie Whittingham doing stuff like this....both of which have forgotten more than Oneil will ever know - and Reddam is a loan shark - what the heck does he really know?? I do!! Zippo/ Nada!!
Jorge More than 1 year ago
what a idiotic comment! Dude, it's not your horse and obviously you don't know what you are talking about and I see there's another stupid comment from you below this one too. I know it's your opinion but obviously you have no clue. Are you a fan or a gambler? Not that I care but you are the type of guy that if this horse ends up winning the race you will probably think it was a fix. I wish DRF banned people like you from ever posting crap in here.
miss_lys36 More than 1 year ago
If Know More is a tough colt that O'Neill is describing him as, then maybe he does have a chance. We won't know until the race is over.
Ultimatehorselover More than 1 year ago
This is the colt I have a lot of faith in. I truly hope he can get the job done. I got to see Know More work at Del Mar a few days ago, and he reminds me a lot of his grandsire, Seattle Slew.
The Baron More than 1 year ago
Yeah Seatle Slew - saw him break his Maiden at Belmont in a STRAIGHT MAIDEN race by many - 10/1 on morning line and went off at 5/2 and cruised - that is how you do it right!! I bet my lungs and was not disappointed. They ran him through the conditions. It is like going in to the Olympics with out ever racing is a trial race - no one does that!! Just stupid!!
miss_lys36 More than 1 year ago
"It is like going in to the Olympics with out ever racing is a trial race - no one does that!! Just stupid!!" Dude, you are acting as if they are entering the colt into a classic length race. The Best Pal stakes is 6 1/2 FURLONGS. A maiden special is 5 1/2 furlongs. Not much of a big difference, now is there? And about the competition; well, if the competition brings their A game, and then yes, it will probably be a tough race for Know More. But look at Amarish; he didn't live up to expectations in his last race.
victor More than 1 year ago
Anyone know where Mario G is riding?
martymar . More than 1 year ago
i believe he is in hastings right now
Ultimatehorselover More than 1 year ago
I think Mario is going to be at Hastings for the rest of the summer, and then he is coming back to California for the Santa Anita meet.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Mario rides BC Cup Day at Hastings. Whether he continues there I haven't read. He has been riding infrequently and all over the place this summer: Emerald Downs, Northland Park, and 4 mounts in a row for O'Neill, 3 at Del Mar and on Handsome Mike at Monmouth in the Haskell. Who knows where his path is going.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BTW- As this article kind of implies expect to see the very hot GoGo assert himself as O'Neill's #1 SoCal rider. Mario will obviously share O'Neill mounts but unless Gomez falls apart he's going to be primary choice. Give extra consideration to the 3YOs these 2 team up on.
Jerome Moynihan More than 1 year ago
It seems he may show up anywhere. And with a good horse to ride. He's going places. It may be that he's listening to Russel Baze,who, in a recent interview with Jay Hovdey,said "You can't watch it and learn"