02/10/2013 4:32PM

Santa Anita: Slim Shadey earns vacation until May at Churchill Downs

Shigeki Kikkawa
Slim Shadey, winner of the San Marcos under Gary Stevens, will be pointed to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic at Churchill Downs in early May.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Slim Shadey’s win in Saturday’s $151,750 San Marcos Stakes at Santa Anita will result in a brief vacation and a resumption of his career in Kentucky this spring.

Trainer Simon Callaghan said on Sunday that he plans to keep Slim Shadey at distances of 1 1/8 miles to 1 1/4 miles on turf in coming starts. The next objective for the 5-year-old gelding is the $500,000 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic over 1 1/8 miles on turf at Churchill Downs on May 4.

Slim Shadey was second to Little Mike in the 2012 Woodford Reserve. In the long-term, Slim Shadey will be considered for the Arlington Million at Arlington Park on Aug. 17, Callaghan said.

“Those are the sort of races that we want to go for,” Callaghan said.

Last fall, Slim Shadey was eighth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf over 1 1/2 miles at Santa Anita, but shorter races are preferred for his 2013 campaign.

“He doesn’t quite see the distance,” Callaghan said.

Slim Shadey races for breeder Phil Cunningham and has won 5 of 26 starts and $613,850. Aside from the 2012 San Marcos, Slim Shadey won the Grade 2 John Henry Turf Championship over 1 1/4 miles on turf here in September.

In Saturday’s San Marcos, Slim Shadey led throughout the 1 1/4 miles on turf, giving 49-year-old jockey Gary Stevens the first stakes win of his month-long comeback.

The San Marcos erased the frustration of a sixth-place finish by Slim Shadey in the Grade 2 San Gabriel Stakes over 1 1/8 miles on turf here on Jan. 13. Slim Shadey never reached the front in the San Gabriel and was beaten 7 1/4 lengths.

“I knew he was training as good as he had been before,” Callaghan said.

“He didn’t like being that far behind the last time. He’s got plenty of speed.”

Interaction will get more distance

Interaction was second to Slim Shadey in the San Marcos and will race over longer distances in coming months, trainer Ron McAnally said.

The goals are $150,000 turf races such as the San Luis Obispo Stakes over 1 1/2 miles on March 16 and the San Juan Capistrano Handicap over about 1 3/4 miles on April 21, the final day of the current winter-spring meeting.

Interaction closed from 10th in a field of 12 to finish a length behind Slim Shadey as the 7-2 favorite.

“I thought we had the best horse,” McAnally said. “Gary got an easy lead.”

Interaction was second in the Grade 2 Hollywood Turf Cup at Betfair Hollywood Park over 1 1/2 miles in December.