12/18/2009 12:00AM

O'Neill has two for Malibu


Supreme Summit, unraced since a second in the Damascus Stakes at Santa Anita on Nov. 7, is one of trainer Doug O'Neill's two hopes for the $300,000 Malibu Stakes at Santa Anita on Saturday's opening-day program.

The layoff does not concern O'Neill.

"I think he's a horse that thrives with more time between races," he said. "He's an honest horse."

O'Neill is also starting Square Eddie, who will make a quick turnaround following a last-place finish in the Grade 3 Native Diver Handicap on Dec 12. Square Eddie is winless in six starts since the Grade 1 Breeders' Futurity at Keeneland in October 2008, a span that includes a second in the 2008 BC Juvenile.

"He came out of the race in great shape," O'Neill said of Square Eddie's start in the Native Diver. "I think he was a little rank early on. I was disappointed in myself that I didn't have him more settled. He only got beat four lengths for the whole thing."

O'Neill noted that the Malibu "is a Grade 1 in our own backyard and 3-year-olds only."

Joe Talamo will ride Square Eddie, while Joel Rosario, the leading rider at the current Hollywood Park meeting, will ride Supreme Summit. Other probable starters for the Malibu, which is run over seven furlongs, are Coronet of a Baron, Feisty Suances, Jeranimo, Kinsella, M One Rifle, Misremembered, New Bay, Papa Clem, and possibly Smart Bid.

Breaking from recent tradition, Santa Anita is running the Malibu and the Grade 1 La Brea Stakes for 3-year-old fillies over seven furlongs on the same program. The $300,000 La Brea is led by the six-time stakes winner Carlsbad, who is trained by Jeff Mullins.

She will face a field expected to include Amazed by Grace, Evita Argentina, Dani Reese, Gaby's Golden Girl, Kays and Jays, and Pinkerella.

Jones eyes stakes for Compari

Compari's feet let him down last spring, forcing the stakes winner to the sidelines from May until this fall. He returned to win a six-furlong allowance race on turf on Thursday at Hollywood Park, giving trainer Marty Jones hope that the 3-year-old colt can be a factor in major stakes in coming months.

Compari could start in one of two Sunshine Millions races over 1 1/8 miles for California-breds and Florida-breds on Jan. 30 - the $500,000 Classic on the main track at Santa Anita or the $300,000 Turf at Gulfstream Park. Jones also has the $200,000 Strub Stakes for 4-year-olds at Santa Anita on Feb. 6 as an option.

"The Sunshine Millions is definitely a possibility," Jones said.

In Thursday's race, Compari disputed the pace throughout and won by two lengths in 1:08.38.

Owned by breeders John Harris, John Nicoletti, and Don Valpredo, Compari won the $350,000 Snow Chief Stakes for statebred 3-year-olds in April. He was sidelined after that race with quarter cracks, which forced him to Harris's farm for the summer.

"We couldn't get his quarter cracks going comfortably," Jones said. "We had to pull the plug after the Snow Chief. They had him at the farm and backed off him and let his feet grow out. They did some things with the shoeing. Once he got back down here, he seemed like himself. It was tough to miss the races this summer, but he wasn't right to keep going."