05/21/2011 11:53AM

Hastings: Teide merits slight edge over Senor Rojo in Longden 6000


VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Senor Rojo, the local horse of the year in 2010, and Teide, who won the same honor the year before, headline the $50,000 John Longden 6000 for 3-year-olds and up at Hastings on Monday. The 6 1/2-furlong feature drew seven horses and it appears to be a wide-open event.

The likely shape of the race could favor Teide. Trained by Dino Condilenios, Teide does his best work from a stalking position but he does have speed, and with a moderate pace expected it wouldn’t be surprising to see jockey Chad Hoverson try and gun him to the lead. Teide surprised a lot of people when he forced the pace and won the 6 1/2-furlong George Royal Stakes last year, and he could be tough to handle Monday if he breaks alertly.

Teide raced only four times last year, winning twice, and was sent home after being injured in the Grade 3 Longacres Miles. He didn’t break that sharply when he returned to finish fourth in the $50,000 George Royal won by Noosa Beach on May 8 but he might be a sharper horse with a race behind him.

Condilenios has also entered Almost Time, who was voted the champion sprinter and champion B.C.-bred older horse in 2010. He is coming off of a win over Ladner Lad in an optional $50,000 claiming race May 8.

St Liams Halo, trained by Troy Taylor, does have some speed but he isn’t going to set the kind of fractions Noosa Beach posted in the George Royal. He forced a moderate pace in his win over Heavenly Chorus in a first-level optional $35,000 claiming race April 24 and figures to move forward in his second start following a lengthy layoff. In his previous start he won a maiden special weight on the Arlington Park turf course last June.

Spaghetti Mouse is a better horse going longer but given the lack of speed in the field he could be a threat if he gets involved early.