Updated on 09/16/2011 6:57AM

Dutrow sells Smooth Jazz to Tabor


JAMAICA, N.Y. - Smooth Jazz, undefeated in two starts, including a victory in the Best Turn Stakes at Aqueduct on Feb. 23, has been purchased privately by Michael Tabor from owner-trainer Tony Dutrow and turned over to trainer Todd Pletcher.

A 3-year-old son of Storm Boot, Smooth Jazz arrived at Pletcher's Gulfstream Park barn on Wednesday morning. Smooth Jazz is nominated to the Swale Stakes and the Florida Derby - both run at Gulfstream on March 16 - but Pletcher said he has not decided on the colt's next start. The Swale would be more likely as Tabor and Pletcher have Nokoma for the Florida Derby. Moreover, Smooth Jazz has yet to race beyond six furlongs.

"We'll get a line on him and see how he trains," Pletcher said Wednesday from Gulfstream. "He just got here today. It depends on how he trains down here and how quickly he acclimates."

Smooth Jazz won his maiden by 2 1/4 lengths on Jan. 13 at Aqueduct and then came back to win the Best Turn by 2 3/4 lengths while acting like he would appreciate longer distances. Pletcher has seen both of Smooth Jazz's races on television and is impressed.

"Obviously, he's accomplished a lot in a short period of time," Pletcher said. "To go from a maiden win to a stakes shows that he's a very talented horse. Tony did a terrific job with him. I hope to do as well."

Dutrow, who purchased Smooth Jazz for $95,000 at the Keeneland September 2000 sale, said he received an offer from Tabor that he couldn't refuse. Dutrow declined to reveal the purchase price.

"I think he's a good horse, I've always said that," Dutrow said from Maryland. "You hate to see a good horse walk out of your barn, but the gentleman put down his money."

Dutrow had been pointing Smooth Jazz to the $200,000 Gotham Stakes here on March 17. Dutrow will still be represented in the race by Saratoga Blues, the Whirlaway winner, who is undefeated in three starts.

On Thursday, Saratoga Blues worked a half-mile in 46.60 seconds at Laurel Park. The move was the fastest of eight half-mile workouts.

"He worked fantastic," Dutrow said. "I couldn't be any happier with him."

Also confirmed for the Gotham are Mayakovsky, Parade of Music, and Saarland. Tank's Expectation, Medaglia D'Oro, and My Man Ryan are possible.

On Wednesday, at Santa Anita, Mayakovsky worked seven furlongs in 1:24.20. He is expected to ship to New York on March 15.

New plan for Coyote Lakes

Coyote Lakes, the stakes-winning 8-year-old gelding, is heading to California sooner than originally planned.

Trainer Bruce Levine will ship Coyote Lakes to California on Wednesday to run in the San Luis Rey Handicap on March 16, a race that serves as a prep for the San Juan Capistrano Invitational on April 21. Initially, Levine was going to keep Coyote Lakes in the East and either run him in Saturday's Stymie Handicap at Aqueduct or simply train up to the San Juan Capistrano.

"If he runs good there we'll stay for the Capistrano," Levine said. "If he doesn't run good, I'll turn him out and get ready for the Gallant Fox."

Coyote Lakes has won the past two runnings of the Gallant Fox, a 1 5/8-mile race run in December over Aqueduct's inner track.

In order to make the trip to California, Coyote Lakes has to van to Kentucky on Sunday or Monday to make an airplane on Wednesday.

Once Rich looms lone speed

Trainer Allen Iwinski and jockey Lorenzo Lezcano have teamed up to win nine races at the inner track meeting. Win No. 10 could be in the offing Friday when Once Rich looms the lone speed in a third-level allowance race that serves as the day's feature.

Once Rich is coming off a neck victory in a classified allowance race at Laurel Park on Feb. 7, a race in which he stalked the early pace. His three previous wins have come in gate-to-wire style, and there does not appear to be any other speed in the field.

Skip a Grade raced close to a dawdling pace when third to Stymie-bound Flying Baron last out at this level. He appears to do his best running from farther off the pace. Yankee Doodle Boy finished second in the aforementioned race and looks to be the main threat to Once Rich.

* Top Official breezed five furlongs in 1:04.47 on Wednesday, but trainer Leah Gyarmati said she is "on the fence" whether to enter the 7-year-old gelding in Saturday's Stymie Handicap. Top Official is coming off a third-place finish in the John B. Campbell Handicap on Feb. 17, and Gyarmati said the horse is more effective with more time between races.