09/30/2009 11:00PM

Dewey's Special going for 4 in a row


ARCADIA, Calif. - Dewey's Special risks a perfect 2009 record in Saturday's $125,000 California Cup Mile on the turf at Santa Anita, a race trainer Ron Ellis says is

custom-designed for the 4-year-old gelding.

"He fits with these California-breds," Ellis said. "I think he's better on the turf than the main track. He comes out of his races better."

Owned by Dustin Moore, Dewey's Special won his first stakes in the California Dreamin Handicap at Del Mar on July 26 and was put away after that race for the California Cup Mile.

There was a slight hiccup along the way, a week of training missed because of a bruised foot, but Ellis said that Dewey's Special is ready for Saturday's race, which has drawn a field of nine.

"He only missed one work," Ellis said.

Dewey's Special is unbeaten in three starts this year, two allowance races at Hollywood Park and the California Dreamin Handicap. All three races were at 1 1/16 miles on turf. In the California Dreamin Handicap, Dewey's Special was near the front for the first half-mile, took the lead in early stretch, and won by three-quarters of a length.

Ellis said that Dewey's Special is best when racing near the front, and he plans to utilize that strategy in the California Cup Mile.

"He could be anywhere in the first three," Ellis said. "I wouldn't think he'd be any farther back than that."

Dewey's Special may have the lead, although Skimmetry, who is making his stakes debut, and Bert's Law, third in the California Dreamin, race near the front.

The biggest threat to Dewey's Special is Enriched, a 4-year-old half-brother to seven-time Grade 1 winner Lava Man. Enriched is making his stakes debut in the Cal Cup Mile. Trained by Craig Dollase for breeder Carol Lingenfelter, Enriched began his career earlier this year and has won 3 of 7 starts, including 2 of his last 3.

Enriched won a one-mile allowance race on turf against open company at Del Mar on Aug. 21 which solidified his status as a Cal Cup Mile candidate. The gelding has thrived since his last start, Dollase said.

"He's probably put on some weight, and I think the freshening has done him some good," Dollase said.

Dollase briefly considered a start in Saturday's California Cup Classic.

"His numbers are better on the grass," Dollase said. "He's got some try in him."

Dewey's Special is one of two stakes winners in the field, joined by Unusual Suspect, who won the Cougar II Handicap over 1 1/2 miles on the main track at Del Mar on Aug. 5. Unusual Suspect has been fifth and sixth in two subsequent graded stakes. He was fourth in the California Dreamin Handicap, finishing 1 1/2 lengths behind Dewey's Special.

Unusual Suspect is by leading California stallion Unusual Heat, who also is represented in the Cal Cup Mile by the improving The Usual Q.T. Trained by Jim Cassidy, The Usual Q.T. is making his stakes debut after winning a maiden race and an allowance race at Del Mar.