Updated on 09/15/2011 2:27PM

Riderless Xtra Heat draws post 2


John Salzman's phone must have been ringing off the hook Wednesday afternoon. Just about every jockey agent in the country probably tried to contact Salzman, the trainer of Xtra Heat ( ), when he did not name a rider on his standout filly sprinter at entry time for Saturday's $300,000 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash at Laurel.

Jorge Chavez, who was aboard Xtra Heat when she was second a gutsy second in the Breeders' Cup Sprint, was reported to have a previous commitment in Kentucky. Rick Wilson, who was on Xtra Heat in her first 11 starts this year, nine of which were victories, is still recovering from injuries sustained in a spill earlier this fall.

No matter who Salzman picks to pilot Xtra Heat in the Grade 1, six-furlong De Francis, the instructions to the rider will not be complicated. Xtra Heat drew post 2 in a field of seven for the De Francis, making her the clear inside speed.

Reigning champion sprinter Kona Gold, who finished seventh as the favorite in the Breeders' Cup Sprint, drew the outside. That is a good spot for him, because he can track the pacesetters and will have every opportunity to make an unimpeded late run. Caller One, who was just a neck behind Xtra Heat when third in the Breeders' Cup Sprint is the other major pace player in the De Francis; he drew the five hole.

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