08/22/2003 12:00AM

Kudos hurt, skips Pacific Classic


DEL MAR, Calif. - Kudos, the winner of the Californian Stakes in June, has been withdrawn from Sunday's $1 million Pacific Classic at Del Mar after suffering a tendon injury during training on Thursday, trainer Richard Mandella said.

The injury was detected on Friday morning, a day after Kudos worked five furlongs in 59.80 seconds.

"There will be no Pacific Classic for us," Mandella said.

Kudos was considered an outsider in the Pacific Classic, which will have only four starters - Candy Ride, Fleetstreet Dancer, Medaglia d'Oro and Milwaukee Brew. It will be the smallest field in the 13-year history of the track's richest race.

The injury occurred to Kudos's left foreleg and is not considered career threatening, Mandella said.

"We've had pretty good luck treating these kind of injuries," he said. "We'll regroup and turn him out. We've had a number of them come back from this and do good. We'll have to hope for some luck."

Bred and owned by Jerry and Ann Moss, Kudos has won 7 of 24 starts and $1,238,935.

A 6-year-old gelding, Kudos has come back from injury in the past. After winning the Grade 1 Oaklawn Handicap in April 2002, Kudos was sidelined for the remainder of 2002 after a bone chip was detected in an ankle.

This year, Kudos had only one victory, in the Grade 2 Californian, but was in the midst of his most lucrative campaign, having earned $530,000 from five starts.

In January at Santa Anita, he finished second to Congaree in the San Pasqual Handicap in his comeback race. He followed that effort with a third in the Santa Anita Handicap behind Milwaukee Brew. A month later, Kudos finished third in the Oaklawn Handicap, finishing three lengths behind Medaglia d'Oro.

In the Californian Stakes at Hollywood Park on June 14, Kudos rallied from last in a field of seven to defeat Piensa Sonando by a half-length. Expected to be a factor in the Hollywood Gold Cup on July 13, Kudos finished fifth, five lengths behind Congaree.

The defection of Kudos left Mandella without a starter in the Pacific Classic, a race he won in 1996 with Dare and Go and 1997 with Gentlemen. Despite the bad news, Mandella is optimistic that Kudos can return to racing in 2004.

"He'll come back next year," he said. "He's a gelding and we'll give him a lot of time off."

Classic winner General Challenge on parade

General Challenge, the 1999 Pacific Classic winner, was retired earlier this year after a failed attempt at a comeback after a break of 2 1/2 years. On Sunday, racing fans will have an opportunity to honor his career when he leads the post parade for the Pacific Classic.

Jockey David Flores will ride General Challenge in the post parade.

Owned and bred by Betty Mabee and her late husband, John, General Challenge, 7, has been retired to the family's Golden Eagle Farm in Ramona, Calif.

Earlier this year, he made three starts with his best finish a fifth in an allowance race behind Pacific Classic contender Candy Ride. General Challenge made one start after that, in an allowance race on July 5, and ran eighth before the decision was made to end his career.

Overall, General Challenge won 9 of 21 starts - all for trainer Bob Baffert - and earned $2,877,187. Aside from the Pacific Classic, his career highlights included wins in the 1999 Santa Anita Derby and the 2000 Santa Anita Handicap.

Since General Challenge was sent back to the farm earlier this summer, Betty Mabee said that he has adapted to his new life - but makes one demand.

"You have to bring him carrots," she said. "He's been such a fun horse."

Golden Eagle Farm has won the Pacific Classic twice, including the inaugural running in 1991 with the late Best Pal.

General Challenge has company on the farm with fellow retiree Dramatic Gold, the multiple stakes winner who finished third behind Tinners Way and Best Pal in the 1994 Pacific Classic and fourth behind Dare and Go in 1996.

Now 12, Dramatic Gold is best known for his third in the 1994 Breeders' Cup Classic and wins in the 1994 Molson Export Million at Woodbine and 1996 Meadowlands Cup.

Bis Repetitas upsets Outta Here

Bis Repetitas, who was scratched from the Secretariat Stakes at Arlington Park on Aug. 16, won a $63,000 allowance race over a mile on turf on Thursday.

The race served as a prep for the $300,000 Del Mar Derby over 1 1/8 miles on turf on Sept. 7.

Ridden by Jose Valdivia Jr., Bis Repetitas finished a half-length in front of 4-5 favorite Outta Here. Valdivia had Bis Repetitas last in the field of five on the first turn and rallied in early stretch to reach contention. The time was 1:34.71 on a course that has played fast throughout the meeting.

Owned by Ed Gann and trained by Bobby Frankel, Bis Repetitas has won 3 of 9 starts. Thursday's race was his first victory since arriving from Europe last fall.

Guaranteed $1 million pick six pool Sunday

Sunday's 11-race program includes a $1 million guaranteed pick six pool, the only time the promotion will be offered at this meeting.

The pick six includes three sprints on the main track, a sprint on turf, the Del Mar Oaks on turf, and a one-mile race for optional claimers on the main track.

The pick six begins in the sixth race, an optional claimer over five furlongs on turf. Santano, who has run well in turf sprints in northern California, makes his Del Mar turf debut.

The seventh race is a sprint for California-bred 2-year-old maiden fillies over 5 1/2 furlongs. Champ's Rocket, second in the $125,000 California Thoroughbred Breeders Association Stakes on July 25, is the likely favorite.

The eighth race is an optional claimer over a mile on turf that drew nine runners and is a competitive race.

The Del Mar Oaks is the ninth race. There are only six betting interests, but many contenders, including Cassis, Katdogawn, and Personal Legend.

The final two races are sprints - a maiden claimer in the 10th race and $16,000 claimers over 6 1/2 furlongs.

Prado hopes for better luck

Edgar Prado headed to Del Mar for the first time in 1992, when he rode Jolie's Halo in the Pacific Classic. They were the third choice, at 3-1. Jolie's Halo was expected to set the pace. But one stride out of the gate, he stumbled badly, pitching Prado to the dirt.

That remains the only race in which Prado has ridden at Del Mar. He has not been back since.

"I came there once, but I didn't get out of the gate," Prado said recently.

Prado will try for a better second act on Sunday, when he returns to Del Mar to ride Milwaukee Brew in the Pacific Classic, whose field was reduced to four on Friday with the scratch of Kudos.

Prado in 1992 was a top rider in Maryland, but was relatively unknown outside the Mid-Atlantic region. He rode Jolie's Halo for trainer Robert Camac. In the past five years, since moving permanently to New York, Prado has become one of the nation's leading riders, regularly competing in Grade 1 races.

* A plaque dedicated to the wartime service of the late trainer Charlie Whittingham was placed Friday morning on Mount Soledad in La Jolla, alongside plaques of other San Diego-area natives who served in various wars, by the Mount Soledad Veterans Memorial Association.

* A team penning competition featuring local jockeys will highlight a fundraiser for the Don MacBeth Memorial Jockey Fund on Tuesday night at 7 p.m. at the Del Mar fairgrounds's horse show arena, adjacent to the racetrack. General admission is $5.

- additional reporting by Jay Privman