05/09/2010 11:00PM

Hollywood Hit looking like a star


ETOBICOKE, Ontario - Trainer Terry Jordan is back in the spotlight, with no small thanks due to Hollywood Hit's explosive performance in Sunday's $153,500 Vigil.

Stretching out to seven furlongs in the Grade 3 Vigil, and coming off a win here in the six-furlong Jacques Cartier - for which he was saddled by trainer Danny O'Callaghan - Hollywood Hit did what he did best under regular rider Jim McAleney.

Which, in summation, is to take the lead and take no prisoners. Scoring by three lengths, Hollywood Hit set a track record of 1:20.07 and his Beyer Speed Figure of 114 is the best for any North American sprinter this season.

"I've had the privilege of riding some really nice horses, but I don't know if I've been on a horse like this before," said McAleney. "He's brilliant. I think he can go anywhere, and do anything.

McAleney gave a big assist to Demitri Topousiz, who is Hollywood Hit's regular exercise rider.

"It's so important to have someone who can hold him in the mornings," said McAleney. "He just wants to go, so fast."

Jordan, who was sending out his third straight winner and third in four starts since returning from a 30-day suspension for a medication violation, also had high praise for Hollywood Hit.

"He's a really good horse," said Jordan, who trains Hollywood Hit, an Oklahoma-bred 4-year-old gelding, for owner Peter Redekop. "He's a lot better than anyone gives him credit for."

The $150,000 Bold Venture, a 6 1/2-furlong stakes here July 17, is the next open main-track sprint stakes here for the division.

"These kinds of horses can't run every couple of weeks," said Jordan. "The way they lay their body down, they run so hard it takes a while to get them back together."

Jordan does allow that his ultimate goal for Hollywood Hit is this year's Breeders' Cup Sprint at Churchill Downs.

"The way he ran in this race, I think he deserves a chance at it," said the trainer.

Hotep welcomes return home

After finishing up the track in a pair of graded stakes at the Fair Grounds, Hotep was back on his home grounds for last Saturday's $112,600 Wando.

And the change evidently was for the good, as Hotep returned to form with a convincing 3 1/4-length victory in the open 1 1/16-mile race for 3-year-olds.

"He finally showed up," said Mark Frostad, who trains the homebred Hotep for Sam-Son Farm. "I've been expecting him to do this for a while.

"He ran a good race, and hopefully he'll really learn from it."

Hotep raced in fourth early under jockey Patrick Husbands and swept to the lead on the final turn before drawing off to finish in 1:43.55 while facing a strong headwind through the stretch. His Beyer Speed Figure came back an 85.

Husbands, said Frostad, "had to fight him to get him off the pace a little bit early. He's still a tricky horse to ride. When you ask him to go, he really goes."

Hotep is scheduled to start once more before the Queen's Plate with his options including the 1 1/16-mile Marine on May 29 and the 1 1/8-mile Plate Trial on June 13.

The $1 million Queen's Plate, a 1o1/4-mile race for Canadian-bred 3-year-olds, will be run here July 4.

Giant's Tomb looks solid

Frostad also was satisfied with the performance of Giant's Tomb, a Queen's Plate candidate who finished third when he made his local seasonal bow in a 1 1/16-mile second-level allowance/optional $62,500 claimer.

As the only 3-year-old in the field of six, Giant's Tomb made up ground in the final furlong to finish third under Husbands.

The top two finishers, Tierra del Tigre and Greycliff Exchange, raced in that order throughout in fractions of 26.63 seconds, 51.44, and 1:15.09 for the first six furlongs.

"It's very difficult to close against that type of pace," said Frostad, adding that Giant's Tomb also probably would use either the Marine or the Plate Trial as his final stepping-stone to the Queen's Plate. "I was happy that he was able to pick up a horse in the stretch."

Giant's Tomb, also a Sam-Son homebred, earned a Beyer Figure of 78.

Mobilizer steps into fore

Trainer Roger Attfield, who already has a leading Queen's Plate candidate in Hollinger, unveiled a second contender here Saturday as Mobilizer captured a 1 1/16-mile maiden race in his local debut.

Mobilizer, a homebred who races for Stronach Stable, was making just his second start after having finished third in his 1 1/16-mile debut at Keeneland on April 8.

"I was pretty confident that he'd win, but I thought he'd win easier than that," who had watched Mobilizer break from the 12 post under Jono Jones and overcome a wide trip to score by a nose. "He did fight back, though. He showed a lot of gumption, and he came out of it fine."

Attfield plans to start Mobilizer once more before the Queen's Plate, with the Marine and Queenston being among his options.

"He's a nice horse, no question," said Attfield.

Hollinger, meanwhile, remains on target to begin his campaign in Saturday's Queenston, a seven-furlong race for Ontario-foaled 3-year-olds.

Southdale wins in comeback

Southdale, who had been away from the races since finishing a close second in last year's Plate Trial, made a triumphant return to competition here in Saturday's seventh race.

With his regular rider, Emma-Jayne Wilson, in the irons, Southdale stalked the pace in a first-level allowance at six furlongs and then rolled to a 2 1/4-length victory.

Southdale was timed in 1:08.59 and was assigned a 92 Beyer.

"I knew he'd run a big race, and I was delighted," said Ian Black, who trains Southdale for his owner and breeder, Rod Ferguson. "He's always had a tremendous amount of speed. But the biggest relief was to get him back and have him jog out sound Sunday morning."

Black had been pointing Southdale to the Grade 3, $150,000 Eclipse, a 1o1/16-mile race for 4-year-olds and upward here June 5, and opted to use the allowance race rather than the Vigil as a starting point.

"I'll probably still go that way," said Black. "We'll work out during the year what he does best, distance-wise and surface-wise."

* D's Wando and Stormy Lord, both slated to contest the Queenston, breezed five furlongs in separate appearances here Sunday morning. Wilson was aboard D's Wando, who was clocked in 1:02, while McAleney guided Stormy Lord through his 1:00.20 move.