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Santa Anita: Game On Dude sharpens, Nonios joins field for Breeders' Cup Classic
By Jay Privman
ARCADIA, Calif. – Game On Dude, the likely favorite for the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic on Saturday, completed his serious training for the race with an eye-catching workout on Sunday morning at Santa Anita, a day when his trainer, Bob Baffert, put seven other BC runners through the final drills.
“Today I had a really good day,” Baffert said.
Four other Classic candidates worked around the country – Flat Out, Ron the Greek, and To Honor and Serve at Belmont Park, and Fort Larned at Churchill Downs.
Also Sunday, trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said Nonios would be entered on Monday in the Classic. Nonios was pre-entered last week in both the Dirt Mile and the Classic. Martin Pedroza will ride, Hollendorfer said.
All 15 BC races will be drawn on Monday.
Here at Santa Anita, on another spectacularly clear morning, the training highlight had to be Game On Dude, who easily disposed of a workmate under jockey Rafael Bejarano. Daily Racing Form gave him a six-furlong time of 1:13.32 going from the six-furlong pole to the wire, and had him galloping out a full mile in 1:39.29.
“He went great, just like he always does,” Baffert said.
Baffert was much happier with the racing surface on Sunday. It was tighter than on Saturday, when several horses, including the Baffert-trained 2-year-old filly Executiveprivilege, seemed to struggle over it in the stretch.
“I was worried about her until I saw Dullahan, and you could tell he was struggling,” Baffert said. “It was a lot better today. It was too loose yesterday. They weren’t keeping enough water on it.”
Baffert also worked his Sprint candidates Capital Account and Coil, in company, and sent out Fast Bullet for a solo drill. Fed Biz, prepping for the Mile, also had an easy breeze.
“He’s gonna run a good race,” Baffert said.
Contested, Baffert’s contender in the Filly and Mare Sprint, worked six furlongs, and he sent Juvenile runners Power Broker and Title Contender out for a five-furlong team drill.
A number of other BC runners worked Sunday, the biggest name being the unbeaten champion My Miss Aurelia, who could not have been going easier in a half-mile breeze Daily Racing Form timed in 48.04 seconds in preparation for the Ladies’ Classic. Class Included, also going to the Ladies’ Classic, was credited by track clockers with a half-mile time of 47 seconds, the best of 65 at the distance.
Other Santa Anita works on the main track on Sunday included Gantry for the Sprint, Juniper Pass for the Marathon, Slim Shadey for the Turf, and Monument for the Juvenile.
On the turf, works were recorded by Bridgetown, California Flag, and Tale of a Champion for the Turf Sprint, and Doubles Partner for the Mile.
Across town at Betfair Hollywood Park, Jeranimo (four furlongs, 47.20 seconds) and Mr Commons (six furlongs, 1:12) both worked on Cushion Track for the Mile on turf. The time of Mr Commons was the best of 19 at the distance.
-- additional reporting by David Grening and Mike Welsch
Jack - what would you do if you were Bob? I'm assuming you have a high pressure gig like he does.
I hate Bob Baffertt
Why does Baffert run TWO Horse's in those Maiden races ALL the Time.? Just how STUPID are these Owners that go ALONG with that Program? If an OWNER gets BEAT, he sure as HELL doesn't want it to be by the TRAINER'S other Horse .Does BOBBY sit down a TELL Owner "A" don't WORRY about Owner "B''" Horse. So the Owner of the 2nd Place Finisher gets $ 9,400 instead of $28,000 for WINNING the Maiden Race,that he would Have IF Bobby only Ran 1. Now the OWNER of the 2nd Place Horse has to WAIT for ANOTHER race,and hope he WINS that. The ONLY Person that BENEFITS is BOBBY BAFFERT, SURE as Hell NOT the PUBLIC, Especially in the PICK-6 races that MANAGEMENT Promotes the LIVING HELL out of. So your TICKET should INCLUDE both of BOBBIES Horse's, Becuase you sure don't want to have 5 out of 6 and MISS the OTHER Baffert Horse. Oh, I'm SURE BOBBY has "NO IDEA" which one of HIS Horse's is FULLY CRANKED, So he TELLS both Owner's, Go ahead and BET the Hell out of YOUR Horse..No WONDER People think this GAME is RIGGED. A Trainer with TWO Hores's in a RACE sould GO as ONE. I don't GIVE a DAMN if it's a TWO Horse RACE. This GAME was BORN out of MATCH Races...........................
Classic is one of the worst fields IMO. But I like Fort Larned style here. Lots of early pace for Dude to handle and I believe he may have a repeat of last yr. RTG runs like Drosselmyer and MMM as well as THAS are not quitting types. Have to admit Bejarano a stronger rider even though I think the switch was unfair.
OK SA, Just make sure that track super Baffert like the surface...
I was hoping that Capital Account would run in the dirt mile. 6 panels is to short for him.
Ughh, was looking forward to betting Nonios in dirt mile
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