09/11/2008 11:00PM

Have-not favored against haves in futurity


ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. - No, it has nothing to do with class warfare, but think of the Arlington-Washington Futurity in terms of the haves and the have-nots. That is, those 2-year-olds that have already raced farther than a sprint distance, and those who have not.

The Grade 3, $200,000 Futurity drew a field of 14. Four horses have raced as far as the Futurity's one-mile distance, the rest are hoping to stretch out with success. And the race also forms crossroads in terms of quality: A horse that runs well can advance to more major autumn stakes. Those that flop might merely have been precocious summer horses that developed faster than their peers.

"We're all just looking to make that next step," said trainer Pat Byrne, who sends out one of the haves, Investor, winner of a one-mile maiden race here Aug. 3.

Capt. Candyman Can is a have-not, his lone start a 5 1/2-furlong maiden race. But since the race was at Saratoga, and since Capt. Candyman Can won by more than seven lengths, he may be favored to win the Futurity.

"Looking at the pedigree, watching him, I'd think he'd be fine in a one-turn mile," said trainer Ian Wilkes.

Capt. Candyman Can, by Candy Stripes and out of a Storm Creek mare, makes his synthetic-track debut, but has trained regularly on a Pro-Ride surface in Kentucky.

Advice enters on a weird pattern. His lone start came in the first one-mile 2-year-old maiden race of the Arlington season, way back on July 3. He won by eight lengths, immediately hitting the radar for the Futurity, but the Todd Pletcher barn has faced the daunting task of keeping the horse going well during a long gap between races. Advice missed a scheduled work Aug. 24 with a cough, but has come back with two subsequent drills.

Terrain won the Mountaineer Juvenile in his most recent race, and is one of only two stakes winners in the field. The other is My Dominick James, an Illinois-bred winner of his first three starts, but one of the horses without a start beyond a sprint trip.

"I think he can do it," trainer Larry Rivelli said. "This horse will rate."

Jose Adan, another Illinois-bred stretchout sprinter, has won his first two starts here. Ready Racer finished second by less than a length last month in the Ellis Park Juvenile. Giant Oak and His Greatness - the latter with Alex Solis named to ride - both enter off impressive Arlington debut wins.

* Two races before the Futurity, the Graham Motion-trained Caprice should be a strong favorite to win the $50,000 Claire Marine Stakes.