08/15/2005 11:00PM

Jazzy Gallop to get his shot

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Chuck Saus/Mountaineer Race Track
Real Dandy, shown winning the West Virginia Derby with a career-high 102 Beyer, is being pointed to the Pennsylvania Derby on Sept. 5, according to trainer Steve Asmussen.

Trainer Steve Asmussen has a horse in mind for the Super Derby at Louisiana Downs on Oct. 1, but it's not the horse many might expect.

Asmussen sent out Real Dandy to win the Grade 3, $750,000 on Sunday and said Tuesday that Real Dandy is being pointed for the Grade 2, $750,000 Pennsylvania Derby at Philadelphia Park on Sept. 5.

The same day, the Asmussen-trained Jazzy Gallop will be auditioning for the Grade 2, $750,000 Super Derby in the $50,000 Prelude at Louisiana Downs. The results of the 1 1/16-mile Prelude will dictate whether Jazzy Gallop advances to the 1 1/4-mile Super Derby.

"He has to earn his way there," said Asmussen.

Asmussen said Real Dandy came out of the West Virginia Derby in good order.

The colt is based at Churchill Downs, and Asmussen said timing and other considerations make the Pennsylvania Derby a logical fit for Real Dandy. The horse races for Bob and Cathy Zollars of Dallas, who also own Jazzy Gallop.

Real Dandy earned a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 102 in the West Virginia Derby, and had earned checks in five graded stakes leading up to the race, which was run at Mountaineer Race Track.

"He's been a super little horse for the Zollars," said Asmussen. "He always runs his race."

May start proposed for 2006

Louisiana Downs has asked the Louisiana Racing Commission for 97 dates of Thoroughbred racing for 2006. The proposed meet would extend from May 5, which is Kentucky Oaks Day, through Nov. 4, which is Breeders' Cup Day.

This year, Louisiana Downs is racing 93 dates, from April 29 through Oct. 9.

"We sat down with our horsemen and worked out a dates schedule that we both could sign off on and agree to, and this is what we've collectively come up with," said Ray Tromba, vice president of racing operations at Louisiana Downs. "We think it works well. We race through the big races of the season, and it keeps us open so many of the horsemen don't have to look for somewhere else to go in October" - before Fair Grounds in New Orleans opens in November.

The commission will address the dates request at the end of August.

Skin Flint gets first big test

Trainer Cole Norman said last month that if Skin Flint were a 3-year-old, he would be calling him his Super Derby horse. The colt, now 4, has developed rapidly over the course of the Louisiana Downs meet and will face the toughest test of his career on Thursday, when he faces a stakes-quality field in a three-other-than allowance worth $28,000.

The 6 1/2-furlong race drew seven horses, including Mr. Jester, winner of the $1 million Delta Jackpot who makes his first start since November, and Zarb's Luck, a multiple stakes winner and earner of of $563,310.

Things have come easily for Skin Flint this meet. He won his maiden by nine lengths on May 29, when he ran six furlongs in 1:10.20. Norman then moved him to two turns for his first start against winners, and he won the entry-level allowance by four lengths on June 24.

Skin Flint then cut back to seven furlongs and won a two-other-than allowance by 1 3/4 lengths last start on July 16. Guy Smith has the mount for Gary and Mary West Stables Inc.