12/08/2008 12:00AM

Jackpot 1-2 head to Florida


VINTON, La. - There is a chance that Big Drama and West Side Bernie, who finished one-two in Friday night's Grade 3, $750,000 Delta Jackpot at Delta Downs, could meet again this winter in Florida. While neither camp has laid out next-race plans, both horses traveled to the Miami area Saturday, with Big Drama settled in at Calder and West Side Bernie based just a little farther north at Palm Meadows Training Center.

Both horses earned career-best Beyer Speed Figures for their efforts in the Jackpot. Big Drama was with the pace throughout for a one-length win and was given a 96 Beyer. West Side Bernie made a run at Big Drama in the lane and earned a 94 Beyer.

The win was the fifth straight for Big Drama, who showed tenacity and courage in handling a host of new variables in the Jackpot. He vanned 18 hours to Delta last Monday for the race, which was his first start outside of Calder. With the move, Big Drama handled a new surface, a six-furlong oval, and night racing. He also stepped into graded company for the Jackpot.

"He overcame everything," said David Fawkes, who trains Big Drama for Harold Queen. "He came here, and he was a real professional. He did everything right."

And even when things went wrong, Big Drama prevailed. During the Jackpot he was stepped on by a rival and ran part of the 1 1/16-mile race on a sprung shoe. He escaped with just a cut on his left hind foot.

"Luckily, they grabbed more shoe than horse," Fawkes said.

Big Drama is one of about 45 horses Fawkes has in training between Calder and Gulfstream. The Jackpot was the richest career win for the 49-year-old, whose best horses have been multiple Grade 1 winner Take D' Tour and Grade 2 winner Forty One Carats.

West Side Bernie, who trained at Delta for two weeks before the Jackpot, put in a nice bid Friday.

"I feel like a bridesmaid," trainer Kelly Breen said. "I just ran second in the Remsen with a horse named Atomic Rain, and we ran second here."

Breen said next-race plans are to be determined for West Side Bernie.

"Were going to take him down to Palm Meadows, and we'll see how he's doing," he said. "We'll let him tell us what we're going to do and where we're going to go. We're hoping to give him a little breather right now."

West Side Bernie won the Grade 3 Kentucky Cup Juvenile in September and was sixth in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile.

Three Part Harmony was pulled up in the stretch of the Jackpot and suffered a non-displaced condylar fracture in his left foreleg, trainer Jose Pinchin said. He is to undergo surgery in Ocala, Fla., and could make his comeback next fall. Three Part Harmony was the runner-up to Big Drama in all three Florida Stallion Stakes races at Calder.

Four Gifts eyes Fair Grounds campaign

Four Gifts, a commanding winner of the Grade 3, $500,000 Delta Princess for 2-year-old fillies in her two-turn and stakes debut Friday at Delta, is expected to run next at Fair Grounds. The $75,000 Tiffany Lass on Jan. 10, which is the first race on the road to the Grade 2, $400,000 Fair Grounds Oaks, is one option for her, according to trainer Steve Asmussen.

"We'll see how much this took out of her," he said. "She ran great the first time we went a little further with her, seven-eighths at Churchill, and had this in mind off of that [win], and she trained beautifully at Fair Grounds for this. By far, this was her best race."

Four Gifts earned a career-best 92 Beyer and won by 2 1/4 lengths over Breeders' Cup alum C. S. Silk. Shaun Bridgmohan rode Four Gifts.

"Shaun gave her a great ride, gave her a little daylight, and she looked super coming home," Asmussen said.

Heiligbrodt Racing Stable purchased Four Gifts as a yearling at Fasig-Tipton for $125,000. Pedigree was one of the reasons Heiligbrodt bought her, Asmussen said, noting that Four Gifts is out of Agiftofservice, who is a full sister to Grade 1 winner Cashier's Dream. Heiligbrodt campaigned Cashier's Dream with Team Valor, and the Asmussen-trained filly won three graded stakes, including the Spinaway in 2001. Four Gifts is by Even the Score.

C. S. Silk will go to Gulfstream

C. S. Silk was the Delta Princess favorite one start after setting a hot pace and finishing seventh in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies. She tracked the pace Friday, took the lead in the stretch, but could not contain Four Gifts.

"I think she ran her race, no excuses," trainer Dale Romans said. "She had a good trip. We'll take her to Gulfstream Park, let her down a little bit, then look at late January, early February."

C. S. Silk earned a career-best 88 Beyer. Earlier this year, she won the Grade 3 Arlington-Washington Lassie.