Updated on 09/17/2011 9:42AM

Request for Parole wins on turf


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Request for Parole, making just his second start since finishing fifth in the Kentucky Derby last May, rallied from far behind under Edgar Prado to win an allowance-optional claimer at 1 1/16 miles Wednesday at Gulfstream in his turf debut.

Now trained by Stan Hough for owners Sam and Jeri Knighton, Request for Parole drew off from the 9-5 favorite, Boastful, in the final yards, winning by a half-length in 1:46.33 over a firm course. He paid $10.

Request for Parole, a 4-year-old by Judge T C, won two stakes at Turfway Park last winter for trainer Steve Margolis before running third in the Spiral Stakes, then fifth in the Derby. Laid up for nearly seven months with a minor leg injury, and eventually turned over to Hough, he returned at Aqueduct last- November with a distant fifth-place finish in an allowance race on dirt.

"I was just looking to get a good race into him," Hough said. "He'd bled in his last race in New York, so I wasn't looking to run him in a handicap or anything. Steve told me the horse had worked real well for him on the grass, so we put him into this spot and it worked out. I'd actually rather go back on the dirt, but now at least we know we have more options with him."

Wertz, the fifth-place finisher in the race, was claimed for $100,000 by owner Mike Gill and trainer Mark Shuman. Gill and Shuman claimed three other horses on the 10-race card.

Earlier Wednesday, Abduction ($17.40) won a third-level allowance route for older horses by three-quarters of a length under jockey John Velazquez. Nothing Flat, the 7-5 favorite, was never a serious threat in fourth.

Florida HBPA watching and waiting

The potential for a dates conflict between Gulfstream Park and Calder Race Course at the end of the year could prove a concern for the Florida Division of the Horsemen's Benevolent and Protective Association which is keeping a close eye on the situation but taking no official stand at this time.

If Gulfstream Park decided to maintain the dates schedule it has proposed for its 2003-04 season, from Dec. 26, 2003, through April 18, 2004, the two neighboring tracks would be in conflict for eight days between Dec. 26 and

Jan. 2, which is Calder's traditional closing date. Gulfstream originally applied for an April 25 closing in 2004 but amended that proposal on Wednesday in order to match the schedule at Santa Anita, which like Gulfstream is owned by Magna Entertainment.

"We made a slight change on the closing end so we would totally mirror the Santa Anita dates schedule next year," said Scott Savin, Gulfstream Park's president. "From a Magna Entertainment standpoint there are a lot of opportunities to be gained by running the exact same dates."

Kent Stirling, executive director for the FHBPA, said his organization will wait until March 15 - the last day the two tracks have to further amend their dates schedule - before taking an official position or any action that might help to alleviate the potential problem.

"We haven't really discussed the dates conflict but we do have a board meeting coming up, although we're really hoping it won't come to this," Stirling said. "From what we've seen in the past I don't think we can have two tracks six miles apart running at the same time. There just aren't enough horses to support two tracks. Even if it's for only an eight-day period."

Stirling was referring to the 1989 conflict between Calder and Hialeah Park which resulted in Hialeah closing its doors after running just 22 days due to poor business and lack of entries.

"I'm not sure what kind of a position we would take if a conflict does arise, although obviously we do control the simulcasting signals for both tracks so we would have some say in the situation if we want to," Stirling said. "Our main objective is doing what's in the best interests of our members."

Savin confirmed the fact that Gulfstream and Calder would need the consent of the group representing the majority of the horsemen at its track - which in both cases would be the FHBPA - to send out their simulcast signal.

Walder saving Private Ryan

Trainer Peter Walder has decided to pass Saturday's $100,000 Hal's Hope Handicap with Private Ryan and await a softer spot.

Walder took over the training of Private Ryan shortly after the horse's second-place finish as the 4-5 favorite in an allowance race at Delaware Park on July 3. Walder gave Private Ryan the remainder of the summer and the fall off in order to point for a 2003 campaign.

"I nominated him for the Hal's Hope in case the race came up with a short field and perhaps on the weak side," said Walder, who has maintained one of the highest win percentages of any trainer on the grounds here over the past several winters. "But with Harlan's Holiday, Hero's Tribute, and Hail the Chief all going into the race I thought it was just a little too much to ask of a horse making his first start in six months."

Walder said he will look for an allowance race here or perhaps a stakes at the Fair Grounds for Private Ryan's 2003 debut.

Heavyweight Champ on comeback trail

Heavyweight Champ topped the Palm Meadows workout tab on Wednesday, working a half-mile in 47.60 seconds for trainer John Terranova.

Heavyweight Champ, third in the Grade 1 Champagne at 2, captured one of five starts during a 3-year-old campaign shortened by injury in 2002.

"He pulled a muscle in behind this summer in the Amsterdam and had a similar problem in his last start," Terranova said. "But he's obviously training great at the moment and the Palm Meadows track is real kind on him. I'll probably look for an allowance race to start him back this winter, although eventually I'd like to try sprinting him on turf."

Terranova also is getting two other horses ready for their 2003 campaigns at Palm Meadows: Onthedeanslist, a winner of four of five career starts and 5 1/2-furlong track record holder at The Meadowlands, and Deputy Dash. Deputy Dash had a small chip removed from his ankle after finishing third in the Peter Pan Stakes last summer.

- Trust N Luck, who posted the highest Beyer Speed Figure (110) of any 2-year-old in the country in 2002, worked a half-mile in 47 seconds on Wednesday morning at Calder. Trust N Luck will pass the Holy Bull Stakes on Jan. 17 and await the Grade 1 Fountain of Youth on Feb. 15.

- additional reporting by Mike Welsch