11/06/2006 12:00AM

Seven Cup winners will run in 2007


Of the eight Breeders' Cup winners on Saturday, seven are expected to race again next year.

Invasor, who won the Classic, is already at the Palm Meadows training facility in Florida, where he will prepare for a 5-year-old campaign. His first goal will be the Dubai World Cup, according to trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.

Also wintering in Florida will be Dreaming of Anna, the Juvenile Fillies winner, and Street Sense, the runaway winner of the Juvenile. Like Invasor, they will be at Palm Meadows. Neither will race again this year.

Thor's Echo, the Sprint winner, is a gelding. He will make his next start in the De Francis Dash at Laurel Park on Nov. 25, trainer Doug O'Neill said.

Miesque's Approval, who won the Mile, will be pointed to the Sunshine Millions Turf at Santa Anita in January, according to trainer Marty Wolfson. He will be 8 next year, and his Mile victory, plus a potential Eclipse Award, might make him more valuable at stud.

Red Rocks is returning to Britain for a 4-year-old campaign and a potential defense of his Breeders' Cup Turf title. His first goal is the Dubai Duty Free, trainer Brian Meehan said.

Round Pond will remain in training and is going to Palm Meadows in Florida with trainer Michael Matz this winter.

Ouija Board, who won the Filly and Mare Turf, will be retired at the end of the year and bred to Kingmambo next spring, according to her owner, Lord Derby.

- Jay Privman

Pletcher still earns good chunk of money

Though he went winless with 17 Breeders' Cup starters, trainer Todd Pletcher said he doesn't think he had as bad a day as many people believe.

Pletcher had 3 seconds and 3 thirds on the day and altogether his horses earned $2.16 million in purses. Pletcher finished second and third in the Juvenile Fillies with Octave and Cotton Blossom; Circular Quay and Scat Daddy finished second and fourth in the Juvenile; Friendly Island finished second in the Sprint; and Honey Ryder and Wait a While finished third and fourth in the Filly and Mare Turf.

"When you go into these days I don't think you can expect to win necessarily," Pletcher said. "You hope you can win one. I don't think any of the horses that we ran there shocked the world that they didn't win. I thought with the exception of the Distaff and Classic they all ran well."

Actually, the biggest disappointment among the Pletcher brigade was probably Wait a While, who finished a non-threatening fourth to Ouija Board in the Filly and Mare Turf. Wait a While had won her previous four turf starts by open lengths.

"It's not like she ran horribly," Pletcher said. "She clearly didn't run the same kind of race. The ground was a little too soft for her, she didn't have the acceleration that she normally has."

Also on Saturday, Pletcher broke D. Wayne Lukas's record for most graded stakes wins in one year when Safari Queen won the Grade 2 Long Island Handicap at Aqueduct. It was Pletcher's 54th graded win of 2006.

- David Grening

Fleet Indian recovering

Fleet Indian, who tore two branches of the suspensory ligament in her left front ankle during the running of the Distaff, has a soft cast on her left foreleg but was resting comfortably in Pletcher's Churchill Downs barn Sunday morning. Her injuries are not life-threatening and she will be able to become a broodmare.

Owner Paul Saylor withdrew Fleet Indian from Monday's Fasig-Tipton November select mixed sale, at which she was to have been sold.

"It's crazy, the ups and down of this game," said Saylor, who purchased Fleet Indian for $290,000 at auction last January then watched the 5-year-old New York-bred mare reel off six consecutive stakes wins and earn more than $1.4 million.

Saylor said Fleet Indian is scheduled to leave Pletcher's barn this week and will get 60 days' stall rest on a farm, then be turned out in a small paddock. Saylor said he would look to sell Fleet Indian in the future, but didn't know if he would do it privately or through at auction.

"I'm not a breeder," he said.

- David Grening, Jay Privman

Two more 2006 races for Ouija Board

Ouija Board might have achieved her connections' immediate objective of winning the Breeders' Cup Filly and Mare Turf, her second such win in three years, but that does not mean she is going home to England a conquering heroine. It does not even mean she is going home.

Ouija Board left Churchill Downs on Sunday and flew to New York, but her stay there will be short. On Tuesday, another flight was scheduled to carry Ouija Board to Japan, where she will contest the Nov. 26 Japan Cup, a race in which she finished a troubled fifth last year. And as long as Ouija Board holds up to her busy travel schedule and comes out of the Japan Cup well enough, she will make the final start of her career on Dec. 10 in the Group 1 Hong Kong Vase, a race that Ouija Board won last year.

"I know it sounds strange, because it was the Breeders' Cup, but I don't think she had a hard race, truly," trainer Ed Dunlop said a couple hours after Ouija Board's victory on Saturday. "We'll have to see how everything looks, but that's the plan, God willing."

Dunlop had been saying all autumn that Ouija Board was just as good this year as she was during a scintillating 2004 campaign that ended with a Breeders' Cup win at Lone Star Park, and the makers of Beyer Speed Figures would concur. Ouija Board was given a 108 Beyer for her 2 1/4-length win over Film Maker on Saturday, the same number she earned in the 2004 Filly and Mare Turf.

- Marcus Hersh

Matz: Bernardini still deserves title

Michael Matz had horses win the Kentucky Derby and the Breeders' Cup Distaff this year, but is unlikely to see either Barbaro or Round Pond crowned champion in their respective divisions.

Bernardini's second-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Classic isn't likely to enhance Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro's chances of being crowned 3-year-old champion, Matz said. Bernardini won the Preakness, Jim Dandy, Travers, and Jockey Club Gold Cup before finishing second to Invasor in the Classic.

"I'm obviously prejudiced, but I think it would probably be a little hard for them to give Barbaro champion 3-year-old and not Bernardini," Matz said. "It'd be nice if they could be joint 3-year-old champions, but I don't know if that could be possible and I don't think you could give Bernardini nothing for campaigning all year. Bernardini campaigned all year. He was second to Invasor; it wasn't like he ran a bad race."

Similarly, Matz said he doesn't think Round Pond, his Breeders' Cup Distaff winner, can get champion older mare over Fleet Indian, the multiple Grade 1 winner who was injured in the race.

"The resume of Fleet Indian probably stands for a lot," Matz said. "If she wouldn't have gotten hurt, it would have been a different story.''

- David Grening

Turf still in plans for Dreaming of Anna

Dreaming of Anna, who became the first turf-to-dirt winner in the 23-year history of the Breeder's Cup Juvenile Fillies, may race on grass at some point as a 3-year-old in 2007, trainer Wayne Catalano said Sunday.

The unbeaten Dreaming of Anna, who has scored two of her four victories this year on grass, is "way better on the turf," Catalano said, calling her a "superstar" on the surface.

He said that belief contributed to why she raced on grass in her two starts following a maiden victory at Arlington in May. "When we were going to switch to dirt, it was going to be for $2 million," he said, in reference to the purse of the Juvenile Fillies.

In her two races on grass, Dreaming of Anna set a track record in winning the 5 1/2-furlong Tippett Stakes at Colonial on July 29, and she then beat males in winning the Grade 3 Summer at Woodbine on Sept. 17.

Catalano said Sunday that she came out of her Breeders' Cup race in good condition, and would be taken to Palm Meadows training center in Florida for the winter. Although owner Frank Calabrese said Saturday that it is his dream to run her in next year's Triple Crown, Catalano said other races, including the Kentucky Oaks, are being considered.

"You never know where we might run one," he said.- Byron King

Lava Man's future on turf

Trainer Doug O'Neill said Sunday that Lava Man could have primarily a turf campaign in 2007.

Lava Man, who entered Saturday's Breeders' Cup undefeated on the season, finished a disappointing seventh, nearly 16 lengths behind Invasor, as the 6-1 second choice in the Classic.

O'Neill said Lava Man bled slightly but otherwise came out of the Classic in good order.

"His feet are cold and his legs are cold," said O'Neill. "But he was a little more anxious in the paddock than he is before his races in California. It was kind of claustrophobic in there, especially with the big crowd, and I think it got his heart pumping a little more than usual and led to him bleeding. I also hate to use the track as an excuse but I don't think he handled it particularly well."

O'Neill said Lava Man would return to California and will possibly be pointed for the Sunshine Millions Turf at Santa Anita in late January.

"We'll take him back to Hollywood Park and maybe look at the Sunshine Turf," said O'Neill. "The Sunshine Classic is at Gulfstream this year but the Turf is at Santa Anita, so that way we can keep him home. It's very possible we'll keep him mostly on turf next season. He tolerates dirt in California, but if we decide to venture out of state again it will be only to run on turf or over Polytrack."

- Mike Welsch