09/27/2013 4:21PM

Emerald Downs: Cahill Road brings together Dallon's Gold, Chu and You

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Reed and Erin Palmer/Emerald Downs Photos
Chu and You goes after her fourth stakes win on Sunday in the Cahill Road.

AUBURN, Wash. – Dallon’s Gold has yet to be headed or seriously challenged in two starts to date, but that could change dramatically Sunday when he tackles brilliant 2-year-old filly Chu and You in the $50,000 Cahill Road Stakes at Emerald Downs. The final sprint stakes of the meeting, the Cahill Road attracted six runners, though four of them could be reduced to spectators as Dallon’s Gold and Chu and You fight it out up front.

Chu and You holds the advantage in a couple of key areas. She already has three stakes victories, while Dallon’s Gold will be making his first stakes appearance. And Chu and You has been a step faster through the early stages of her races, zipping a half-mile in 44.74 seconds in her last start. Dallon’s Gold wasn’t quite as quick in his most recent outing, in which he covered a half-mile in 45.10, but he was no less impressive through the stretch, kicking clear to win a no-conditions allowance sprint by 4 3/4 lengths.

Trainer Dave Bennett has saddled 221 winners at Emerald Downs over the years, but just three of those victories have come in stakes races. Dallon’s Gold gives him a realistic shot at a fourth.

“He should run pretty well,” said Bennett, who lives in Arizona and spends summers at Emerald Downs. “I know he’s going to be tested by that filly in there, Chu and You, but he should run very well.”

Bennett has had his hands full training Dallon’s Gold, a headstrong son of Private Gold from the Basket Weave mare Winning Weave. The horse was gelded three weeks before his career debut in late June, and for the most part it’s been clear sailing ever since.

“He was purchased at the Washington sale, and me and Dixie Hitchcock, one of the owners, picked him out,” Bennett said. “He’s been a little precocious, hard to break and get lined out. He’s been scratched a couple of times for different reasons. But he seems to be getting his act together. If everything goes well, he’ll run a strong race.”

The great unknown for Dallon’s Gold and for the Robbie Baze-trained Chu and You is how each will respond when hooked by another speedball. No horse has gotten within 1 1/2 lengths of Chu and You in her four starts, and Dallon’s Gold has been equally impressive. In his career bow June 22, Dallon’s Gold opened a six-length lead in the first quarter-mile and coasted.

“He’s won so easy both times; he was being geared down at the end in both of them,” Bennett said. “I can’t tell you if he can rate. No one has come close to him. Chu and You is fast, but I guarantee she’ll be looked in the eye if I can get away from the gate. We haven’t won a stakes, and she’s won about three, so we’ll just have to test her.”

Lucarelli eyes Gottstein, training title

Frank Lucarelli began the week deadlocked with Jeff Metz for the top spot in the Emerald Downs trainer standings. Lucarelli has won the past two training titles, but Metz has been determined to claim the top spot in his first year here. Metz entered more horses than Lucarelli for the final three days of the meeting, but Lucarelli will send out a handful of contenders, including Mebossman in the Gottstein Futurity, on the meeting’s final day, Sunday.

Mebossman is a maiden after four starts, but the colt has been begging for more ground and will get it in the 1 1/16-mile Gottstein. Mebossman, by Petionville from the Halo mare Peaceful Wings, is a half-brother to stakes-winning routers Jade Green, Jebrica, and Peaceful Reign. Lucarelli is hopeful that Mebossman can follow in their footsteps.

“That’s what we’re hoping, that’s what he acts like,” Lucarelli said. “I’ve been saying I’d love to get a route for him, and we’re excited about running him longer.”

Mebossman rallied into a slow pace to finish third in the six-furlong Daily Racing Form Dennis Dodge Stakes in his last start, Sept. 15. Prior to that, he was second in the WTBOA Lads Stakes at 6 1/2 furlongs.

“He’s been running real well,” Lucarelli said. “He’s been chasing hard going short, and I know he wants to go farther. I’ve been happy with what he’s done so far. Once he showed us he had some quality to him, we’ve been thinking that the Gottstein should be up his alley. I think it will set up pretty good for us. There should be some front end. It looks like Del Rio Harbor and Noosito both want to be out there, and they are obviously tough horses. I’m hoping the distance will be an equalizer.”

As for the training title, Lucarelli said he’ll take his shots and see what transpires.

“Unfortunately, I lost a lot of my cheap horses, and it’s coming down to a lot of that,” he said. “I don’t have as many bullets. But If I win a couple of races, it’s going to make it tough on him. Whatever happens, happens.”