01/04/2010 12:00AM

Gio Ponti gets in breeze


ARCADIA, Calif. - Gio Ponti, the runner-up in the Breeders' Cup Classic in November, breezed three furlongs in 36.60 seconds at Santa Anita on Saturday, his first workout since the BC Classic.

Trainer Christophe Clement said he is considering the San Antonio Handicap or two races at Gulfstream Park - the $500,000 Donn Handicap over 1 1/8 miles on dirt on Feb. 6 or the $150,000 Canadian Turf Stakes over a mile on Feb. 20. The Dubai World Cup is a long-term goal.

"Everything is still up in the air," Clement said. "I will be in California in two weeks, and I will make a decision then.

"He came out of the work in good order," Clement said.

Owned by Castleton Lyons, Gio Ponti is a candidate for outstanding older male and outstanding turf male titles of 2009. A 5-year-old, he has won 9 of 16 starts and $3,153,800.

Life Is Sweet back on track

Life Is Sweet, scratched from Saturday's Grade 2 San Gorgonio Handicap on the morning of the race after a bout with stomach cramps, resumed training on Sunday at Hollywood Park and will be pointed for the $250,000 Santa Maria Handicap on Feb. 13, trainer John Shirreffs said.

"She was good [Sunday], went out and galloped out and did fine," Shirreffs said.

Shirreffs said that Life is Sweet did not need any medication after tying up following an early-morning gallop Saturday.

"It was pretty minor but it was significant enough that I didn't want to run her that afternoon," he said. "It's one of those bad timing things."

Owned by Marty and Pam Wygod, Life Is Sweet won the Breeders' Cup Ladies' Classic here in November in her most recent start. She has won four graded stakes on Santa Anita's synthetic main track in the last year.

Cat by the Tale, who won the first stakes of her career in the San Gorgonio, may not start again until the $150,000 Santa Ana Handicap on March 21, trainer Neil Drysdale said. The Grade 2 Santa Ana is run over the same 1 1/8 miles on turf as the San Gorgonio.

Cat by the Tale was third in the Las Palmas and Bayakoa handicaps in the fall.

"She ran a much-improved race," Drysdale said of Cat by the Tale's performance in the San Gorgonio.

Weekend yields Santa Monica pair

Sunday's sprint stakes offered a preview of the $250,000 Santa Monica Handicap on Feb. 1.

Tuscan Evening, who won her fourth stakes in the last year in the , are both bound for the Grade 1 Santa Monica over seven furlongs.

Tuscan Evening has raced exclusively on turf in the last year, but owner William de Burgh and trainer Jerry Hollendorfer wants to try her on the synthetic main track in the Santa Monica.

"We're thinking hard of trying it," Hollendorfer said. He recalled that Heatseeker, with whom he won the 2008 Santa Anita Handicap, made the successful transition from turf racing to synthetic track racing.

Free Flying Soul is proven in synthetic track sprints. Third in the BC Filly and Mare Sprint here in November, she has since won the Winter Stakes at Hollywood Park last month in addition to the Kalookan Queen. She won the Kalookan Queen with little difficulty, stalking the pace to early stretch before drawing off by 2 1/4 lengths.

"It wasn't a tough race for her," trainer Bruce Headley said.

Headley has won the Santa Monica twice, in 1986 with Her Royalty and in 2002 with Kalookan Queen. Hollendorfer will be after his first win in the race.