09/16/2011 3:13PM

Fairplex: Unhitchthetrailor seeks better trip in Barretts Juvenile

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POMONA, Calif. – The summer meet at Del Mar was a disaster for 2-year-old Unhitchthetrailor.

“He had two horrendous trips,” trainer Gary Sherlock said. “The last one was a nightmare. He was trapped on the fence and had no chance to run.”

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Unhitchthetrailor can make things right Sunday at Fairplex Park, where he is the 7-5 preliminary favorite for the $100,000 Barretts Juvenile. Eight entered the race, which is restricted to 2-year-olds offered at any Barretts sale.

The field is soft. Four entrants are maidens, including a first-time starter; two are maiden-claiming winners, including likely second and third choices, Tio Vic and Frisky Moment. Unhitchthetrailor and Joyzey Billy are the only special-weight winners.

Unhitchthetrailor was purchased for $20,000 at the Barretts January sale. By the time he made his debut in April at Hollywood Park, it was clear that owners Phil Daniels, Patsy London, and Terry Lovingier had a top prospect.

Unhitchthetrailor missed by a nose to Joyzey Billy first out, finished third to Majestic City second start, then dropped into a California-bred maiden race July 2 and won by three-quarters of a length with a 68 Beyer Speed Figure.

The maiden win set him up for summer. One month later at Del Mar, Unhitchthetrailor started in the $100,000 Graduation Stakes. He was keen and pulled hard in traffic, angled outside into the lane, and lost his punch while on his wrong lead. It got worse Sept. 5.

Unhitchthetrailor was hard-held third on the rail, blocked with nowhere to run into the lane, then sputtered. Neither of his races at Del Mar was indicative of his true ability, and Sherlock had a back-up plan. The Barretts Juvenile was always in the back of his mind.

“Of course it was, and it usually comes up soft,” he said.

Christian Santiago-Reyes rides Unhitchthetrailor, whose last four starts earned Beyer Speed Figures in the 60s. None of his seven rivals have earned higher than 58.

Second choice Tio Vic was purchased for $7,000 at the same sale as Unhitchthetrailor. Tio Vic won first out May 28 at Golden Gate, was off three months, and returned Sept. 2 with a creditable third-place finish in a starter allowance at Golden Gate. Martin Pedroza rides for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.

Frisky Moment wired maiden claimers Sept. 1 at Del Mar. Although the race earned a 41 Beyer, the second- and fourth-place finishers returned to win. Frisky Moment was claimed by composer Burt Bacharach and his wife, Jane. He runs Sunday for trainer Brian Koriner.