Updated on 09/15/2011 12:46PM

Secret Status finds a prep race


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Secret Status, who was scratched from the Grade 1 Go for Wand Handicap after injuring herself in the starting gate, is scheduled to return to action Friday in a classified allowance race at Saratoga.

The nine-furlong race drew a solid field, including Princess Ellen, Search Party, and People's Princess. The connections of both Secret Status and Princess Ellen are hoping to use Friday's race as a prep for the Grade 1 Personal Ensign Handicap here on Aug. 24.

Secret Status charged the gate and opened up a cut over her right eye just prior to the start of the Go for Wand. Dazed and bleeding, she was forced to scratch from that race and needed four stitches to close the cut. Trainer Neil Howard either had to find another spot or train Secret Status up to the Personal Ensign, run at 10 furlongs.

"All was not lost because we didn't run the other day," said Howard, who added that Secret Status has done well since that gate incident. "But, we need to get on with it now, so to speak"

Since the Go for Wand, Howard has taken Secret Status to the starting gate several times, including on Wednesday.

"She's been acting perfect," Howard said. "I took her to the gate and she relaxes very well. She was standing in there looking around and she was very relaxed."

Secret Status, who as a 3-year-old won the Kentucky Oaks and the Mother Goose, has not been out since finishing second in the Grade 3 Fleur de Lis Handicap. Pat Day rides from the rail.

Disappointed with Princess Ellen's turf races since coming to this country last fall, trainer Tom Skiffington put her on the dirt last month at Belmont Park. She responded with a front-running victory in a second-level allowance race.

"She got left in the gate and rushed up inside and dueled with another horse," Skiffington said. "She put that one away and started opening up on them. She's got a lot of quality."

Skiffington is hoping Princess Ellen could be the female version of Cigar, who went from a nondescript turf horse to a killer on dirt, winning 16 straight at one point.

"People forget what a flop Cigar was on the grass," Skiffington said. "He couldn't get through his two-other-than [condition] on the grass."

Cordero released from hospital

Retired Hall of Fame jockey Angel Cordero was released from Saratoga Hospital on Wednesday afternoon after a two-night stay due to a swelling of the heart.

Cordero, 58, said he woke up Monday morning complaining of chest pains and doctors initially thought he may have suffered a heart attack. Cordero said he was told that there was swelling in the back of the heart, probably caused by stress.

"It was stopping the blood from getting to the heart," Cordero said Wednesday in the racing office. "They thought I was having a heart attack, but I knew I wasn't having a heart attack."

Cordero, who was put on medication, said he was feeling well and was scheduled to go back to work Thursday morning. Cordero, who won the jockey title at Saratoga 13 times in 14 years, now serves as the agent for jockey John Velazquez, who is battling Jerry Bailey for leading riding honors here.

Mayakovsky drills for Hopeful

Mayakovsky, who eclipsed a 55-year-old track record here on opening day, drilled four furlongs in 46.27 seconds Wednesday as he began preparation for the Grade 1 Hopeful on Sept. 1. The work was the fastest of 31 at the distance.

"Just an easy breeze, he went very well," trainer Patrick Biancone said "I'm not too much concerned about time. He changed leads properly and scoped clean, which was my main concern."

Mayakovsky, a son of Matty G, won his debut here on July 25, covering 5 1/2 furlongs in 1:03.32. That broke the record of 1:03.40 set by Tea Olive in 1946.

Biancone said Mayakovsky might have gone even faster in that race had he not been spooked by the sight of a cameraman near the finish line, causing Mayakovsky to drift out.

Biancone has a string of eight horses in Saratoga, including the multiple graded-stakes winner Bonapartiste. Formerly with Ron McAnally, Bonapartiste has not been out since a third-place finish in the Grade 3 Golden Gate Handicap on June 17, 2000. He shows one half-mile breeze here on Aug. 4 and was scheduled to work again Thursday, according to Biancone, who hopes to get a race into the 7-year-old French-bred horse by the end of the meet.

Bonapartiste has a 6-12-5 record from 35 starts, highlighted by a victory in the Grade 2 Del Mar Handicap in 1998.

A bullet for Red Bullet

Red Bullet, who made a successful return off a year layoff when winning an allowance race here last month, drilled five furlongs in 1:00.70 over Saratoga's training track Wednesday. It was the fastest of four works at the distance.

Under regular rider Jerry Bailey, Red Bullet was timed in fractions of 12.19 seconds, 24.40, 36.37, and was caught galloping out six furlongs in 1:16.21.

"It was just something to let him go out and stretch his legs," trainer Joe Orseno said.

Red Bullet, the 2000 Preakness winner, is being pointed to the Woodward Stakes at Belmont on Sept. 8. Orseno mentioned the $350,000 Iselin Handicap, a Grade 2 race at nine furlongs on Aug. 26 at Monmouth Park, is also under consideration.

"We're discussing which is better," Orseno said. "We're real happy with the way he's traveling. He had an excellent comeback race. I can't say enough about the horse. We're expecting big things from him with what he's showing us."

On another front, Orseno said that Collect the Cash would not make Sunday's Ballston Spa Breeders' Cup Handicap. She has just gotten over a respiratory infection and would not be ready for the Grade 3 race.

"She's almost ready to run; she's not ready to run against Gaviola and Penny's Gold," Orseno said.

Orseno said he would look for an allowance race to use as a prep for the Grade 2 Diana Handicap here on Sept. 3.

Windsor Castle doubtful for Travers

Windsor Castle, who had to scratch from last Saturday's Jim Dandy due to a pulled muscle, is "very, very doubtful" for the Travers, according to trainer Frank Alexander.

Windsor Castle has been given acupuncture to treat the hind-end muscle problem, but it's only having mild success.

"He walks sound, but he doesn't jog too good," Alexander said "He'll be all right in time. A miracle would have to take place" to make the Travers, Alexander added.

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