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Hello Broadway to go in Peter Pan
ELMONT, N.Y. - Hello Broadway won't be running in this Saturday's Kentucky Derby, but trainer Barclay Tagg has mapped out a plan he hopes lands the talented 3-year-old in the Belmont Stakes here on June 6.
After watching Hello Broadway work a strong six furlongs in 1:11.09 Monday morning over Belmont's main track, Tagg said that Hello Broadway would make his next start in the Grade 2, $200,000 Peter Pan Stakes here on May 9.
"If he runs well there I'll run him in the Belmont," Tagg said. "I think he's a quality horse, he's just immature. I think he's the right type of horse for the Belmont."
Hello Broadway, a half-brother to multiple graded stakes winner Nobiz Like Shobiz, began the year as one of the more highly regarded 3-year-olds, but he failed to deliver in the prep races, running second in the Hutcheson at Gulfstream and seventh in the Tampa Bay Derby. Tagg backtracked and ran Hello Broadway in a first-level allowance race at Keeneland that Hello Broadway won by 1 1/4 lengths despite bearing out throughout the race.
Tagg has equipped Hello Broadway with a full-cup blinker on his right eye - he won't have a blinker on his left side - and believes that and a change of bits has helped the horse maintain a straight course in his training. Still, Tagg is reluctant to try Hello Broadway in the Derby or Preakness because of the configurations of Churchill Downs and Pimlico.
"The little narrow turns at Pimlico and the Derby are not what he's looking for right now," Tagg said. "The big, wide, sweeping turns at Belmont are more conducive to him."
Met Mile an option for Mr. Fantasy
The connections of the Withers Stakes winner Mr. Fantasy will wait until after this weekend's Kentucky Derby to decide whether to point for the Preakness on May 16. If they choose to pass on the middle leg of the Triple Crown, one potential alternative is the Metropolitan Handicap here May 26.
Though he would have to face older horses, Mr. Fantasy would get a significant break in the weights while running at the distance at which he just ran a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 102. The Met Mile is an extremely prestigious race among breeders and has been won by 3-year-olds such as Honour and Glory, Holy Bull, Gulch, Conquistador Cielo, and Arts and Letters.
"The Met Mile's been brought up, the Woody Stephens," said trainer Kiaran McLaughlin, said referring to a Grade 2, seven-furlong race for 3-year-olds on Belmont Stakes Day. "We'll see how the Westchester goes Wednesday, but the Met Mile is something to look at."
Though a very talented colt, Mr. Fantasy has been somewhat problematic in the paddock and near the gate, prompting concerns over his behavior in front of as a large crowd as would exist at the Preakness.
Cosmonaut to return in Fort Marcy
Phil Serpe believes that, like a fine wine, a turf horse gets better with age.
At least he's hoping that's the case with Cosmonaut, a multiple Grade 3 stakes winner, who is scheduled to make his 7-year-old debut in Saturday's Grade 3, $100,000 Fort Marcy Stakes here.
The Fort Marcy will be Cosmonaut's first start since finishing second as the 1-2 favorite for trainer Carlos Martin in last July's Arlington Handicap, a Grade 3 event Cosmonaut had won the previous two years.
Training toward the Arlington Million, Cosmonaut suffered a non-displaced ankle fracture that did not require surgery. Owner Carl Lizza has returned the horse to Serpe, who had him for two starts in 2008, including a victory in the Tampa Bay Stakes.
Serpe had Cosmonaut at the Palm Meadows training center in Florida during the winter and was trying to get him ready for the Grade 1 Maker's Mark Mile at Keeneland earlier this month. But Serpe said he needed a few more works to be ready for that spot.
"I think his level of fitness is pretty good now," Serpe said.
Cosmonaut will get to pick on several horses his own age in the Fort Marcy. Other 7-year-olds pointing to the race are Interpatation, Prince Rahy, and possibly Operation Red Dawn. The 9-year-old Silver Tree is also expected to run, as are 6-year-olds Dancing Forever and Tam Lin.
Serpe has already had success this year bringing a horse back from a lengthy layoff. Disco's Son is now 2 for 2 since returning from a layoff of nearly two years. He won a second-level allowance race at Gulfstream Park on March 11 and then took a third-level allowance race at Aqueduct, running six furlongs in 1:09.48 and earning a 98 Beyer Speed Figure.
"He was one of those horses that every time they were calling you in the shed row to look at a horse it was him," Serpe said.
Serpe said Disco's Son was gelded during the time he was away, and it has made a big difference.
"He's more fleet now that he's gelded," Serpe said. "He really always showed talent."
Serpe said he was unsure what would be next for Disco's Son.
Storm Play working toward return
While Quality Road is the focus of attention when it comes to horses owned by Ed Evans and trained by Jimmy Jerkens, there is another horse with those same connections who bears keeping tabs on.
Storm Play, who reeled off three consecutive impressive victories last summer before running sixth in the Grade 1 Cigar Mile, is working towards a return to the races. He emerged from the Cigar with a chip in a knee that needed to be surgically removed.
Storm Play is a son of Storm Cat out of the mare Cat Play, who is a half-sister to graded winners Hedonist and Seeking Daylight. Storm Play has breezed three times since April 10, including a five-furlong move in 1:02.43 on Saturday.
"We'll try to run him by the end of May to get his season going," Jerkens said. "So far, he's good."
Cat Moves impresses in debut
Cat Moves, another horse owned and bred by Evans, made an auspicious debut Sunday at Aqueduct, winning by 8 1/4 lengths and earning a Beyer Speed Figure of 81.
Cat Moves, a daughter of Tale of the Cat, dueled with another horse through rapid fractions of 21.50 seconds and 44 seconds before drawing clear, covering six furlongs in 1:10.14.
"Impressed with her race, but not surprised," said trainer Tony Dutrow, who also trained Dance Hall Days, a stakes-winning half-sister to Cat Moves. "I don't know that there are any holes there. Sound filly, great attitude, talent - this is a real good filly. We'll see how good."
Dutrow said he hopes to get the filly some more experience and be able to point her to race like the Grade 1 Prioress here on July 4.