10/27/2011 3:48PM

Santa Anita: Next target uncertain for Ruler of Dubai


ARCADIA, Calif. – Ruler of Dubai would be a short-priced favorite, if he was starting in Saturday’s $100,000 California Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita.

Instead, owner Harout Keshishian and trainer George Papaprodromou have held Ruler of Dubai out of the Cal Cup and are debating what races to target in coming months with the two-time stakes winner.

Third in the Grade 1 Norfolk Stakes over 1 1/16 miles on Oct. 1 in his sixth start, Ruler of Dubai was not considered for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Churchill Downs next month. He may start in the $1 million Delta Jackpot at Delta Downs on Nov. 19 or be given a break and prepared for a return in 2012. The gelding, by Tribal Rule, has not had a recorded workout since Sept. 25.

“He’s doing okay,” Papaprodromou said. “We are trying to come up with a decision before I start breezing.”

If Ruler of Dubai does not start at Delta Downs, he will be turned out, with the new $200,000 Echo Eddie Stakes for 3-year-old statebreds over 6 1/2 furlongs at Santa Anita on March 31 as a goal for early next year, the trainer said.

“If I bring him back for the Echo Eddie, I can give him a month or two,” Papaprodromou said. “That’s what we’re discussing right now.”

At Del Mar, Ruler of Dubai won the Graduation Stakes and I’m Smokin Stakes, both for statebreds.

Celtic New Year goes on break

Celtic New Year, the winner of the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap in August, was not pre-entered for the Breeders’ Cup Turf at Churchill Downs, and will be given a break, trainer John Sadler said.

“He wasn’t right,” Sadler said. “We’ll give him some time off.”

Owned by Michael Jawl, Celtic New Year had a fees-paid berth for the BC Turf after his win in the Del Mar Handicap. The 4-year-old Celtic New Year placed in three consecutive turf stakes in Southern California before the Del Mar Handicap, including a second in the Grade 1 Charles Whittingham Handicap at Hollywood Park in June.

The Sadler-trained Cozi Rosie worked seven furlongs in 1:27.60 at Hollywood Park in preparation for the BC Filly and Mare Turf on Nov. 4. Sadler oversaw his Santa Anita division, and was given a report on the workout by assistant Larry Benavidez. Cozi Rosie galloped out a mile in 1:39, Sadler said.

Cozi Rosie won the Grade 2 John Mabee Stakes at Del Mar in August and was second to BC Filly and Mare Turf hopeful Dubawi Heights in the Grade 1 Yellow Ribbon Stakes here on Oct. 1.

Also at Hollywood Park, Ultra Blend, a pre-entrant for the BC Ladies’ Classic, worked five furlongs in 1:02.20. She was second to Zazu in the Grade 1 Lady’s Secret Stakes here on Oct. 1 and won the Grade 1 Clement Hirsch Stakes at Del Mar on Aug. 6.

At Santa Anita, Irish Gypsy, a pre-entrant for the BC Filly and Mare Sprint, worked six furlongs in 1:12, the fastest of six recorded works at the distance. She was third in the Grade 3 Rancho Bernardo Handicap at Del Mar on Aug. 21.

Long-absent Contemplated returns in allowance

Contemplated seemed on the verge of a promising 3-year-old season after he finished third in the California Breeders’ Champion Stakes here last December. It did not work out that way. He finally makes his 3-year-old debut in a $60,000 allowance race for statebreds on Saturday’s California Cup program.

“He had sore shins last year and needed time,” Sadler said. “He’s come back very well.”

Owned by breeders Marty and Pam Wygod, Contemplated has worked quickly for his return, including six furlongs in 1:13.40 last Saturday.

Contemplated is part of a field of nine that includes Arresting Officer, who was second in the 2010 California Breeders’ Champion Stakes.

On the California Cup program, there are five stakes and four overnight races – two maiden races and two allowance races.