03/22/2012 2:46PM

Gulfstream: Simmard, Newsdad clash again in Pan American

Bob Coglianese
Simmard (5), who outfinished Newsdad by a nose four weeks ago in the Mac Diarmida, faces his rival again in Saturday's Pan American.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Trainer Roger Attfield is a nominee for induction into the National Racing Museum Hall of Fame for the first time this year. One reason for that honor is all the success he has had with veteran turf horses like Simmard, the starting highweight and likely co-favorite along with Newsdad in Saturday’s $150,000 Pan American at Gulfstream Park.

Despite the fact the Pan Am was upgraded to Grade 2 status this year, the 1 1/2-mile turf race only drew a field of six, including a pair from the barn of trainer Bill Mott, Newsdad and Harrods Creek. The remainder of the lineup consists of Hailstone, Cause of Freedom, and Center Divider.

Attfield, already a member of the Canadian Hall of Fame, will be seeking his third victory in the Pan Am, having previously won the event in 1985 with Celous Scout and again three years later with Carotene. Simmard, a 7-year-old son of Dixieland Band, is coming off a game nose decision over Newsdad going 11 furlongs in the Grade 2 Mac Diarmida four weeks ago.

Simmard also climbed out of the shadows of his older stablemate Musketier with his victory in the Mac Diarmida. Musketier, who finished third in the Mac Diarmida, defeated Simmard by a half-length in Calder’s W.L. McKnight Handicap and also beat him on two other occasions in graded stakes earlier in the year. Simmard’s best effort in 2011 came in defeat when he fell a neck short of capturing Woodbine’s Grade 1 Northern Dancer.

“He ran a great race in his last start and that’s why he’s got to give everyone six pounds this time,” said Attfield. “That’s the price you pay when you win. When you don’t win, then you get in light. It could be a factor, weight always concerns me, and that’s a fair bit to give away going a mile and one half.”

Patrick Husbands, who rode Simmard on several occasions last year, will be back aboard for the Pan American.

Newsdad drew abreast of Simmard in early stretch of the Mac Diarmida but could not get past the winner, narrowly failing to collect his first graded stakes victory. Newsdad, who finished fourth in the 2011 Blue Grass, had trounced allowance horses here by nearly seven lengths earlier this winter.

Harrods Creek has not started since finishing second, beaten a head by Eagle Poise, after prompting the pace in Woodbine’s Grade 3 Valedictory on Dec. 4. Harrods Creek had finished third in Aqueduct’s Grade 2 Red Smith Handicap four weeks earlier.

Center Divider, fourth after contesting the pace for a mile in the Mac Diarmida, was a last-minute entry by trainer Chad Brown.

“I just wanted to take a look at the field and see how the race shapes up and be in position to run in case we decide we wanted to try it,” said Brown. “I won’t make a final decision until Saturday morning.”

Pan American Stakes, Post Time: 5:35 ET Saturday

Purse: $150,000; 1 1/2 miles (T)





ML Odds



W. Mott

J. Leparoux




R. Attfield

P. Husbands



Harrods Creek

W. Mott

J. Lezcano




R. Ribaudo

J. Rocco, Jr.



Cause of Freedom

C. McGaughey, III

E. Prado



Center Divider

C. Brown

J. Bravo