07/16/2009 11:00PM

D'Funnybone headed to Saratoga


MIAMI - The Florida Stallion Stakes's loss will be Saratoga's gain after owner Paul Pompa Jr. privately purchased D'Funnybone from trainer Joe Calascibetta for an undisclosed sum earlier this week.

D'Funnybone, a 2-year-old son of D'wildcat, won his career debut by seven lengths here at Calder on May 23 before returning to finish second last Saturday in the Frank Gomez Memorial. D'Funnybone, who earned an 86 Beyer Speed Figure for his performance in the Gomez, would have been one of the favorites for the opening leg of the Florida Stallion Stakes, the $100,000 Dr. Fager Stakes, on Aug. 8. Instead, he will join trainer Rick Dutrow's barn in New York and be pointed for the Grade 2 Saratoga Special on Aug. 20.

D'Funnybone is one of several horses Pompa has recently acquired and turned over to Dutrow for the Saratoga meet, which opens on July 29.

Jackson Bend, who rallied to defeat D'Funnybone in the final strides of the Gomez Memorial, will be headed to the Dr. Fager. A homebred son of Hear No Evil, Jackson Bend is owned by Jacks or Better Farms's Fred Brei and trained by Stanley Gold.

Hear No Evil won the Gomez when it was known as the Criterium Stakes in 2002. Jackson Bend's dam, Sexy Stockings, also campaigned for Brei and won 2 of 7 starts before being retired due to an injury at age 3. Jackson Bend's older sister Garter Belt is a multiple stakes winner whose list of victories includes the Regal Gal here earlier in the meet.

Mach Ride nearly race-ready

Mach Ride continues to inch closer to his much anticipated return, which could come before the end of the month.

Mach Ride, winner of the 2007 Grade 2 Smile Sprint Handicap for trainer Steve Standridge, has been plagued with foot issues ever since and has not started since finishing third behind Benny the Bull in the Sunshine Millions Dash at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 26, 2008.

Mach Ride worked five furlongs in 1:02.36 over a slow and cuppy track here on Thursday with jockey Manny Cruz aboard. He is currently being trained by Peter Gulyas, a former assistant to Standridge, who temporarily retired due to workers' compensation issues.

Wolfson has four options for Nancy's Glitter

The $75,000 Nancy's Glitter Handicap, to be decided here at 1 1/16 miles on July 25, drew 13 nominations, including four from the barn of trainer Marty Wolfson. Among the fillies and mares eligible to the race is Sweetsouthernqueen, who is riding a five-race win streak dating back to March 13 at Gulfstream. Sweetsouthernqueen is trained by Vinnie Blengs for owner John Prete.

Wolfson's quartet of nominees includes Wyatt's Women, recently acquired by Farnsworth Stables via a private purchase, and Miss Singhsix, who joined the Wolfson stable last month after racing exclusively in California for Team Valor International over the past two seasons.

License for slots approved

The state of Florida has officially granted Calder Race Course its license to operate slot machines at the facility. Dave Roberts, the director of the Florida Division of Parimutuel Wagering, signed the license in Tallahassee on July 10.

Construction is ongoing for the new slots facility, which will be located adjacent to the grandstand on the west end of the building. Calder management is targeting a late January opening for the slots room, just before the 2010 Super Bowl, which will be played a couple of furlongs down the road at Land Shark Stadium on Feb. 7.