06/22/2012 2:23PM

Hastings: Spaghetti Mouse running with his first tag


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Spaghetti Mouse will try to get back on track in his quest to become the first British Columbia-bred to win more than $1 million when he runs in a first-level, $35,000 optional claiming race that will serve as Sunday’s feature at Hastings. The 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-olds and up drew eight horses, and the shape of the race should favor Spaghetti Mouse.

With more than $948,000 in earnings and nine stakes races to his credit, Spaghetti Mouse long ago got over the first-level conditions of the race and will be running for a claiming price for the first time in his 51-race career.

His connections, trainer Lenore Dubois and owners Nick and Pauline Felicella, will likely have a hard time sleeping until the race is completed. Spaghetti Mouse has been very special to all of them, and the last thing they want is someone to claim him. Given his current form, it is unlikely anyone would be interested in claiming the 10-year-old, however. He hasn’t won a race since May 30, 2010, and he finished last in his first start this year in a $50,000 optional claiming sprint.

Nonetheless, Spaghetti Mouse will appreciate the move to a distance he has won eight races at, including the Grade 3 British Columbia Derby. He should be able to control the race right from the start, if he breaks alertly with Chad Hoverson aboard.

If Spaghetti Mouse can win and regain some confidence, he would have a realistic chance at reaching the $1 million milestone. If not, his connections will have to decide if the time has come to give up the quest.

Brass Plate should be a decent price and is worth a close look.

Trained by Steve Henson, Brass Plate is coming off a rough trip in a 1 1/16-mile, $35,000 optional claiming race June 5. He should relish the added distance.

Brass Plate was last in the 10-horse field after a half-mile, and when he started to make a strong move approaching the quarter pole, he was forced to go extremely wide. Worse, he lost all of his momentum when another horse drifted out on the turn and cut him off.

Ganbei had a perfect trip while winning the race, and he is an obvious threat to repeat for trainer Mel Snow.

Modest could be a factor, if he can produce the same kind of Beyer Speed Figures on dirt that he has been posting on grass at Gulfstream and Belmont.

Majesticality will appreciate the easier company after a dull effort in the $50,000 Sir Winston Churchill on June 3.