06/16/2011 12:11PM

Hastings: Longer race better fit for Majesticality


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Majesticality will appreciate the move to a middle distance when he makes his second start of the year in a first-level optional $50,000 claiming race for 3-year-olds and up at Hastings on Saturday. The 1 1/16-mile feature drew seven horses and goes as race 7 on the eight-race card that begins at 3:20 p.m. Pacific. The change from the usual 1:20 post time is to attract fans that will be going to the Vancouver Whitecaps soccer game that begins at Empire Fields at 7 p.m.

Majesticality will be making his second start since he upset the 2010 Grade 3 British Columbia Derby last September. In his first start of the year, he ran evenly while finishing fourth behind Sense of Humor in a first-level allowance race for B.C.-breds going 6 1/2 furlongs on May 28.

Trainer Barbara Heads wasn’t surprised when Majesticality came back to work a bullet four furlongs in 46.80 seconds June 12 and likes the way he is coming up to Saturday’s race.

“He has some giddy-up in him,” said Heads, referring to the quick work. “He’s really doing well and he is just a much more comfortable horse going longer. He’s a big heavy horse and he has shown that he likes to settle a bit and then make a big move from off the pace.”

Richard Hamel rides Majesticality.

Majesticality could be up against it in a race where they probably won’t be going very fast early. On the other hand, the shape of the race should suit Cherokee Notion.

Trained by Troy Taylor, Cherokee Notion has good tactical speed and will either be right on the lead or stalking Bearrock N Roll and Victor’s Magic through moderate fractions. Cherokee Notion is coming off of a troubled third in a quickly run optional $35,000 claiming race at 6 1/2 furlongs on June 4. Cherokee Notion has been right there in all three of his sprints this year and is a stakes winner at 1 1/16 miles. He also held the lead at the top of the stretch in the B.C. Derby before tiring to finish third to Majesticality.

Lowther Street has never won sprinting and will certainly appreciate the added distance after finishing fourth, 1 1/4 lengths behind Cherokee Notion in his first start of the year June 4.

Bearempire could do some damage if he breaks better than usual.