05/12/2010 12:00AM

Mythical Power shipping back for handicap


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Mythical Power will be looking to complete a sweep of Lone Star Park's three most prestigious dirt races later this month, when he ships in from Southern California to headline the Lone Star Million Day program of stakes on May 31.

"He's going back for the Lone Star Park Handicap," said Bob Baffert, who trains Mythical Power.

Mythical Power came to town last month and edged Euroears on the wire in the Grade 3, $200,000 Texas Mile. It was Mythical Power's second local stakes win, following his seven-length romp in last year's Grade 3, $400,000 Lone Star Derby.

Mythical Power earned a career-best Beyer Speed Figure of 103 in the April 24 Texas Mile.

"He was training really well for that," Baffert said. "He looked fantastic going into that race and has come back and has trained really well."

Mythical Power worked a half-mile in a bullet 46.60 seconds at Santa Anita on May 8 in his first drill since the Texas Mile. The move was the fastest of 36 at the distance. Mythical Power, a son of Congaree, races for Peachtree Stable.

Baffert won the Lone Star Park Handicap with Congaree in 2002. The win was one of seven graded stakes scores from 14 such starters Baffert has had at Lone Star. Baffert has won seven stakes in the Mid-South region since Feb. 20, with his latest being Game On Dude's victory in last weekend's Grade 3, $200,000 Lone Star Derby. Earlier this year, the trainer went 4 for 4 with his stakes starters at Oaklawn and also won a stakes at Sunland Park.

Mythical Power's competition for the Grade 3, $300,000 Lone Star Park Handicap could include Euroears. Others who are possible include multiple stakes winners Jonesboro, Golden Yank, and Fifteen Love.

Local owner tracking Lady Legends

Sharon Pittman, a Dallas-area owner whose stable includes stakes winner Smokin Again, has been closely following the Lady Legends for the Cure race that will take place Friday at Pimlico. Pittman went to high school with participant Barbara Jo Rubin, who was the first female jockey to win a parimutuel race in the United States.

The two graduated from Miami Carol City High School in Opa-Locka, Fla., in 1967. And with a class reunion coming up next summer, Pittman has been posting information about Rubin's involvement in the Lady Legends race on a Facebook page dedicated to the reunion.

"She has a unique accomplishment," Pittman said.

Pittman and her husband, John, had a sharp debut winner last weekend at Lone Star. Keep On Smokin won a 2-year-old maiden special weight by more than three lengths and has been nominated to the $100,000 D.S. "Shine" Young Futurity at Evangeline Downs on July 3, Pittman said. Keep On Smokin, who earned a 61 Beyer, is trained by Charlie Hukill.

Nolan moves tack to Canterbury

Jockey Paul Nolan, who won the Sam Houston riding title last month and ranks ninth in the standings at Lone Star, has moved his tack to Canterbury, according to agent Travis Church, who represented Nolan in Texas. Nolan has six mounts on Friday's opening-day card in Minnnesota. Church said Nolan plans to return to Texas this fall following Canterbury.

Church has since picked up Emerson Chavez, a graduate of the same riding school in Peru that was once home to such jockeys as Rafael Bejarano and Edgar Prado. Chavez, 23, is new to Lone Star after riding in Kentucky.

* Lone Star claims clerk Jo Vaughn Spraker can whack a tennis ball. She will be playing in a state tournament for seniors this weekend in Little Rock, Ark. Spraker, the wife of retired jockey Larry Spraker, plays women's doubles for a tennis team from Hot Springs.