06/15/2009 11:00PM

Prichard eager for rematch with 'Benny'


MIAMI - Rick Dutrow can't wait to bring Benny the Bull back to Calder to defend his title in the Grade 2 Smile Sprint Handicap on July 11. And trainer Brian Prichard can't wait for them to get here after his How's Your Halo rallied to an impressive four-length victory in last Saturday's Ponche Handicap.

How's Your Halo finished second behind Benny the Bull in the 2008 Smile Sprint. A 6-year-old son of Halo's Image, How's Your Halo further enhanced his reputation by upsetting Ikigai last winter at Gulfstream Park in the Grade 2 Richter Scale.

"Hopefully we'll be able to turn the tables on Benny the Bull and beat him this year," Prichard said. "We need to impress people with him as much as we can this year if he's going to have any chance to have a real good career as a stallion. He's 6 years old now so if that's the way we decide to go, we're going to have to stop on him and send him to stud after this season."

How's Your Halo did turn the tables on one nemesis, Americanrevolution, in the Ponche. How's Your Halo chased but could not get past Americanrevolution when the pair met under allowance conditions several weeks earlier but the pace scenario was more to his liking in the rematch.

"On paper, it looked like things would work out for us the other day because I felt with Honey Honey Honey on the rail he'd have to go and put pressure on Americanrevolution," said Prichard. "Things don't always work out the way you expect but this time it did. We were able to sit off the leaders and go from there."

Leading rider Manoel Cruz guided How's Your Halo to victory in the Ponche although Prichard is still up in the air regarding his jockey assignment for the Smile.

"Juan Leyva had been his regular rider and won some big races for us on How's Your Halo up until he suffered a back injury this winter and I'm obligated to Juan if he's able to be back riding again by next month," said Prichard. "Right now he's waiting on one more report from the doctors and if he gets clearance to return to ride, he could be available for the Smile."

Win or lose, the Smile also figures to be How's Your Halo's final local appearance for a while.

"There's nothing left for him here after the Smile," said Prichard. "He runs everywhere except on those artificial surfaces. We won't try that again with him. I took him to Saratoga a couple of years ago and he ran well, finishing fourth behind Midnight Lute and Benny the Bull, and we'll probably go back there again this summer. He's a notch below the real good ones but sometimes the ones just a notch below will fool you on a given day."

Wolfson counts money, not wins

Marty Wolfson finds himself in an unfamiliar position heading into Thursday's program. Wolfson is atop the local trainer standings with 13 victories, two more than Kirk Ziadie and three ahead of Bill White and David Fawkes.

Wolfson, for all the stakes success he has had here and out of town over the years, has never won a training title.

"Sure it would be nice to be leading trainer but I don't have the claiming horses you can count on to pick up wins week in and week out," said Wolfson. "I can't compete with the guys who are running two or three horses every day. I was second last year to Kirk and second once to Frank Gomez. But I'd rather have the most money earnings than the most wins at the end of a meet."

Wolfson picked up two more stakes victories over the weekend with You Luckie Mann in the Unbridled and First Passage in the Leave Me Alone. Both 3-year-olds will be back for the Summit of Speed, You Luckie Mann in the Grade 2 Carry Back and Leave Me Alone in the Grade 3 Azalea.

Trainer Doug O'Neill also left his 3-year-old filly Donttellmewhattodo in Florida with Wolfson for the Azalea. Donttellmewhattodo finished third as the 8-5 favorite in the Leave Me Alone.

"I really like Doug's filly," said Wolfson. "She needed that race over the track the other day. She's a bit of a nervous filly and she galloped mostly on the training track for this last race. We'll try to get her out early and over to the main track getting ready for the Azalea and I think she'll really improve here next time."

Four-race win streak on the line

Sweetsouthernqueen will go for her fifth straight victory when taking on old friends Shorty Puffs and Ashlee the Great in Thursday's fifth race. The trio finished first, second, and third under third-level optional claiming conditions on May 31 and all are eligible to compete under $25,000 starter allowance conditions in Thursday's rematch.

Sweetsouthernqueen, who is 5 for 7 overall in 2009, began her current streak winning a $12,500 starter allowance race at Gulfstream Park on March 13. She has won three more races locally, including a hard-fought three-quarter-length decision over the pacesetting Shorty Puffs 18 days earlier.

Sweetsouthernqueen, a 5-year-old, is trained by Vinnie Blengs and will be ridden once again by Pedro Monterrey Jr.