Updated on 09/15/2011 1:55PM

Point Given doing fine Sunday morning


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - The name plate on his bridle reads 'Big Red Train,' but Point Given looked more like a pussycat than a locomotive Sunday morning outside barn 49 of the Oklahoma training track at Saratoga.

The day after his rousing Travers win in front of 60,486 fans at Saratoga, Point Given calmly lounged around his stall, stopping occasionally to much hay or perhaps a carrot from one of the steady stream of well-wishers who dropped by his stall. Trainer Bob Baffert paid Point Given a brief visit, but it was exercise rider Pepe Aragon who eventually brought the huge chestnut out of his stall so he could and pose for photos with the many fans who came to meet and greet their new equine hero.

Point Given came out of the Travers in good shape and is now preparing to ship back to California on Monday. Baffert will then get to work on planning Point Given's fall campaign, which he indicated would probably include the 1 1/8-mile G2-Goodwood Breeders' Cup at Santa Anita on Oct. 7.

Dollar Bill is money

Trainer Dallas Stewart was thrilled with Dollar Bill's third-place performance in the Travers and is looking forward to a good fall campaign.

"I was very pleased. It was big-time satisfaction," said Stewart. "I wish we had a prep for this race, but hopefully this was his prep for something in the future."

The future for Dollar Bill, at this point, looks like it will include at least one more run against 3-year-old only company in the G1-Super Derby at Louisiana Downs on Sept. 23.

A P Valentine going home

Nick Zito said Travers fourth-place finisher A P Valentine came out of the race in good shape and will return home to Belmont Park when racing moves back downstate next week. Although he said his horse was basically without an excuse, he did think A P Valentine moved in the right direction off his loss in last month's Jim Dandy Stakes.

"He ran a better race [than in the Jim Dandy] yesterday. If he would have run that race in the Jim Dandy he probably would have won. It's a crazy game," said Zito.

A P Valentine's best races have come at Belmont Park, and Zito is hoping a return home will lead to improvement.

"I'm looking at the Gold Cup for his next race," Zito said referring to the $1 million Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont on Oct. 6. I'll have to talk to [his connections] and see what they want to do."

Lukas not happy with Scorpion's ride

D. Wayne Lukas, trainer of Jim Dandy winner Scorpion who finished a disappointing sixth in the Travers, indicated he thought his horse's chances were compromised when he was kept too close to the early pace by jockey Mark Guidry. "That was exactly what I didn't want," said Lukas. "I knew we were out of it five jumps into the race."

Lukas is looking at the Jerome Mile at Belmont on Sept. 15 for Scorpion's next start.

Bad start cost Volponi

Jockey Richard Migliore said Volponi's flat-footed start cost him all chance in the Travers.

"He had all his weight shifted to one side when they opened the gate. He wasn't squared at all," said Migliore of Volponi who finished seventh in the race. "After that start he ate a lot of dirt and never really picked up the bridle. I know he didn't get to run his race.

Trainer Phil Johnson said he'd like to get Volponi a "confidence builder" race and proceed from there with him this fall.

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