07/13/2017 2:10PM

Los Alamitos cuts back Saturday card

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CYPRESS, Calif. – Field sizes continue to be a concern at the Los Alamitos eight-day summer meeting, which ends Sunday.

Nine races were originally scheduled for Saturday’s program, but the track has carded eight, including the $200,000 Los Alamitos Derby.

During the meeting’s first week July 6-9, fields averaged 6.97 starters per race, compared with 7.9 starters per race at last December’s meeting. The December meeting had the highest average field size since the track was expanded in early 2014 to host afternoon Thoroughbred races.

Saturday’s eight-race program drew 60 runners, or 7.5 entrants per race. Racing secretary Bob Moreno said he and his staff sought to card nine races, but an additional race would have been forced.

“We have one five-horse field, but we had decent numbers with the rest of the card,” he said. “We were better with a solid eight.”

Moreno projected that the track would run nine races on Sunday’s closing day. Entries were being compiled Thursday.

Field sizes have been an issue throughout Southern California this year. Santa Anita canceled four days of racing at its spring-summer meeting because of low numbers of entries and ran three-day weeks for the final three full weeks of June to ensure larger fields.

The Los Alamitos meeting comes at a time of year when many owners and trainers are focused on preparing horses for the Del Mar summer meeting, which begins Wednesday. Stables began shipping to Del Mar on Thursday.

:: Get PPs, clocker reports, and more for the Saratoga and Del Mar meets

Kiss Me Know plans U.S. debut

Kiss Me Now, the winner of two Group 1 races for 3-year-old fillies in Brazil last fall, joined trainer Paulo Lobo’s California stable this year and will have her American debut at the Del Mar summer meeting.

Lobo said he is considering Kiss Me Now for the $75,000 CTT and TOC Handicap at 1 3/8 miles on turf for fillies and mares Aug. 16. Kiss Me Now has won 3 of 9 starts and has not raced since January.

By T.H. Approval, Kiss Me Now won Group 1 stakes on turf at 1 1/8 miles and 1 1/4 miles last October and November. Kiss Me Now has had a steady pattern of workouts since early June.

“She’s a filly that doesn’t need to do much in the morning,” Lobo said. “She’s a light filly. She’s not a great worker, but she should improve a lot on grass.”