01/13/2012 4:31PM

Santa Anita: Drill likely to start year in San Vicente

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Wendy Chaumoint
Drill has not started since finishing ninth in the Grade 1 CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park on Dec. 17.

ARCADIA, Calif. – Drill, the winner of the Grade 1 Del Mar Futurity last September, but comprehensively beaten in his last three starts, is expected to make his 3-year-old debut in the $150,000 San Vicente Stakes over seven furlongs on Feb. 19, trainer Bob Baffert said on Friday.

Friday at Santa Anita, Drill officially worked a half-mile in 48 seconds, although Baffert said the workout started 4 1/2 furlongs from the finish line. Baffert said that Drill galloped out six furlongs in 1:12.40.

“That’s pretty impressive,” he said. “He really likes this track.”

Drill has not started since finishing ninth in the Grade 1 CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park on Dec. 17. In November, Drill was 10th in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Churchill Downs and seventh in the Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes in Louisiana.

Drill may have an old foe in the San Vicente in Creative Cause, who finished third in the BC Juvenile. Creative Cause and Drill were first and second in the Grade 1 Norfolk Stakes here in October.

Friday at Hollywood Park, Creative Cause worked five furlongs in 1:01. “He’s not a great work horse, but he galloped out strongly,” trainer Mike Harrington said.

Harrington said that Creative Cause will “probably” start in the San Vicente, but that the colt could be held out of the race in favor of a two-turn race in March. “There will be a lot of speed in there, and I don’t know if I want to ask him to catch those horses or not,” Harrington said of the San Vicente.

Flores takes day off after spill

Jockey Eswan Flores took off his mounts on Friday, a day after being involved in a spill at Santa Anita.

Flores, 18, complained of soreness on Friday after he worked a horse at Santa Anita, according to his agent, Joe Griffin. “He’s still a little stiff, and I told him not to ride,” Griffin said.

Flores, an apprentice who claims seven pounds, was unseated from Shoo Gee in the stretch of a maiden race on the hillside turf course. Shoo Gee was leading when she broke down.

Through Thursday, Flores was tied for seventh in the standings at the winter-spring meeting, with five wins from 38 mounts.

◗ Brother Francis, third in the CashCall Futurity, was scratched from a maiden race on Saturday because of illness, trainer Jim Cassidy said. “He got a little temperature this morning and he didn’t eat last night,” Cassidy said on Friday.

The Usual Q.T., one of Cassidy’s leading runners in the last three years, is entered for Monday’s $150,000 San Gabriel Stakes over 1 1/8 miles on turf. A five-time stakes winner, The Usual Q.T. has not started since finishing third in the Grade 2 American Handicap at Hollywood Park last May.

The San Gabriel is led by Jeranimo, the winner of the Grade 2 Citation Handicap at Hollywood Park in November.