05/08/2012 3:57PM

Hollywood Park: Morning Line headed to Californian

Benoit & Associates
Morning Line, with Joe Talamo riding, wins the Mervyn LeRoy.

INGLEWOOD, Calif. - Morning Line, who won his California debut in the Mervyn LeRoy, will make his next start in the $150,000 Californian Stakes over 1 1/8 miles on June 2.

Between those races, trainer John Shirreffs and his staff will be working on Morning Line’s peculiar behavior. At times, the multiple stakes-winning 5-year-old has proven difficult to train and manage.

Before the Mervyn LeRoy, Morning Line had a minimal warmup and had to be coaxed to the starting gate. When the other runners were near the start, Morning Line was still a quarter-mile away, at the top of the stretch, with jockey Joe Talamo dismounted.

Eventually, Morning Line made it to the gate, and then led throughout to win by a half-length in his first start for Shirreffs.

“He doesn’t know he’s ornery,” Shirreffs said. “He forgets it right away.”

Morning Line, who races for Will Farish, Dixiana Stable, and Thoroughbred Legends Racing Stable, has won 5 of 13 starts and $1,212,300. He won two stakes for Nick Zito before joining Shirreffs’s stable.