10/09/2010 1:37PM

Devil May Care has hepatitis; will miss Breeders' Cup

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Barbara D. Livingston
Devil May Care has been diagnosed with non-contagious hepatitis and will miss the rest of the year.

ELMONT, N.Y. – The multiple Grade 1-winning 3-year-old filly Devil May Care will miss next month’s Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic as well as the remainder of the year after being diagnosed with a non-contagious case of hepatitis, trainer Todd Pletcher said Saturday.

Devil May Care, who won the Mother Goose and Coaching Club American Oaks following a 10th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, has been treated with antibiotics and is at her owner John Greathouse’s Glencrest Farm in Kentucky.

After finishing fourth to Blind Luck in the Alabama at Saratoga on Aug. 21, Devil May Care was diagnosed with an elevated liver enzyme count. Though she had remained in training while being treated for that issue, Devil May Care was not working up to her usual standards, according to Pletcher.

Last week, she was sent to Kentucky to be evaluated and was diagnosed with a non-contagious case of hepatitis on Thursday.

“She’s going to be on some antibiotics,” Pletcher said. “We are going to give her 60 days off. It’s a situation where she needs to be taken out of stressful training. We expect her to come back better than ever. It helps explain her somewhat lackluster effort in the Alabama.”

Pletcher said Devil May Care is likely to return to his stable during the Gulfstream Park meeting early next year.

While Devil May Care won’t be running in the Ladies’ Classic, Pletcher still figures to be well represented in the race, with Life At Ten and Malibu Prayer. Life At Ten won the Grade 1 Beldame Invitational on Oct. 2, her seventh win from her last eight starts. Malibu Prayer won the Grade 1 Ruffian at Saratoga before finishing second in the Grade 2 Molly Pitcher at Monmouth Park on Aug. 29.

On Saturday, Malibu Prayer worked a solid five furlongs in 1:01.00 over Belmont Park’s training track. She went her first quarter in 24.86 seconds and got her last three furlongs in 36.14 while continuing to gallop out six furlongs in 1:13.61 and seven-eighths in 1:27.76.

“A typical Malibu Prayer work,” Pletcher said. “She has always been an exceptional work horse. Based on the way she’s always trained, it’s not surprising she was able to win a Grade 1 this year.”

Malibu Prayer, a daughter of Malibu Moon, won her only start at Churchill Downs, the Grade 2 Chilukki, a one-turn mile race. But Pletcher believes that 1 1/8 miles around two turns “is within her reach.”

Giant Moon work toward Empire Classic

The connections of Haynesfield were not the only ones happy about their New York-bred winning the Grade 1 Jockey Club Gold Cup here Oct. 2. The connections of statebreds eyeing the $200,000 Empire Classic here Oct. 23 were quite pleased as well because now Haynesfield is Breeders’ Cup Classic bound.

“I was much happier than Toby,” said Rick Schosberg, the trainer of Giant Moon, referring to Haynesfield’s assistant trainer Toby Sheets. “I kept texting him `Way to go, Toby.’ I was just as happy for him winning the Jockey Club as for us winning the maiden race right after that. They just gave him more money.”

Giant Moon, who won the Evan Shipman Stakes at Saratoga in July, is likely to be one of the choices in the Empire Classic. On Saturday, he worked five furlongs in 1:02.60 over the Belmont training track. Schosberg has been absolutely thrilled with how Giant Moon has been training since his last start, a second-place finish in the Salute Me Sir Stakes here Sept. 17.

“With him you can tell,” Schosberg said. “If he drags you to the racetrack, it’s as good as it gets. These last couple of weeks, he’s been very, very good.”

Also working Saturday was Friend or Foe, who went five furlongs in 1:01.16 over the training track. Friend or Foe got his final quarter in 24.13 seconds and galloped out six furlongs in 1:14.56.

Friend or Foe hasn’t run since he finished sixth in the Travers on Aug. 28. He was entered in the Pennsylvania Derby on Sept. 25 but scratched. Trainer John Kimmel was pointing him to the Kelso, but the horse spiked a temperature a week before the race, forcing him to miss a work.

“We wanted to give him a little chance to get over the Travers,” Kimmel said. “He came out of that race with a cut in his leg, which then got infected, so that delayed us.”

Also working Saturday for Kimmel was Uncle T Seven, winner of the Ashley T. Cole who is pointing to the Mohawk here Oct. 23. Uncle T Seven went five furlongs in 1:01.

Buddy’s Saint progressing well

Buddy’s Saint, last year’s Nashua and Remsen winner, was credited with a half-mile move in 48.15 seconds Saturday morning over Belmont’s main track, his third breeze since returning to trainer Bruce Levine’s care a month ago. Overall, it was his seventh breeze since he resumed training following the removal of an ankle chip.

Levine said he hopes to run Buddy’s Saint at Aqueduct next month.