01/18/2011 2:19PM

Hollendorfer looking out of town for Blind Luck, Dakota Phone

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Barbara D. Livingston
Blind Luck could ship out of Santa Anita for her next start, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Blind Luck and Dakota Phone, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer’s leading horses, may not start again at the Santa Anita winter-spring meeting.

Frustrated by what he perceives as the speed-biased nature of the track’s sand-and-clay surface, Hollendorfer said he may not start Blind Luck again at the Santa Anita meet after she was second in the Grade 2 El Encino Stakes on Sunday, her first start since a second-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Ladies’ Classic at Churchill Downs in November.

“I’ve got to take a wait-and-see approach,” he said Monday from Miami, where he was attending the Eclipse Awards. “She came out of the race perfect. She jogged perfect this morning.”

After Sunday’s race, where Blind Luck finished 3 1/2 lengths behind Always a Princess, Hollendorfer expressed frustration about the track, saying, “We may have to do something else. If the track stays the same way, I don’t think we’ll run here.”

Blind Luck has won 9 of 16 starts and $2,418,712.

Dakota Phone, winner of the Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile in November, may be sent to Golden Gate Fields to train on the Tapeta Footings synthetic surface there in advance of a potential trip to Dubai in late March, Hollendorfer said. Meydan Racecourse in Dubai has a Tapeta surface.

Hollendorfer said that Dakota Phone has been nominated to two races in Dubai – the Godolphin Mile and the Dubai World Cup over 1 1/4 miles.

Dakota Phone has made two starts since the BC Dirt Mile, finishing fifth in the Native Diver Handicap at Hollywood Park on Dec. 4 and fourth in the San Pasqual Handicap here Jan. 8.

“It’s hard to figure out what we’re going to do,” Hollendorfer said.

Hollendorfer mentioned the possibility of shifting Dakota Phone to turf, a surface over which the 6-year-old gelding has not started since finishing second in an allowance race at Hollywood Park last June.

Santa Anita added sand to the surface last weekend and early this week, replacing sand washed away during rainstorms in late December and early January.

Clubhouse Ride may go out of town

Hollendorfer is not the only training strongly considering stakes at other tracks for a horse with a closing style.

Trainer Craig Lewis said Monday that Clubhouse Ride, runner-up in the Grade 2 Sham Stakes last Saturday, may start elsewhere in his next start. Lewis was not specific about a potential race for his 3-year-old but said that “all of them” would be considered.

“After watching the films, I’m not concerned about the track, but in my view, speed has kind of an advantage,” he said of the Santa Anita track. “We’re weighing all the options. More than anything else, we might run at a track that’s closer friendly.

“I’d like to run in the Santa Anita Derby, but that’s up in the air right now.”

The $1 million Santa Anita Derby is run over 1 1/8 miles on April 9.