09/01/2015 12:16PM

Social Inclusion pointing for Bayern Stakes

Taylor Ejdys/Equi-Photo
Social Inclusion wins a second-level optional-claiming race on Saturday at Parx.

Social Inclusion made an impressive return to the races at Parx last Saturday for his new trainer, Juan Carlos Guerrero, winning a second-level optional-claiming race by 11 3/4 lengths.

Social Inclusion, who finished third last year in the Wood Memorial, Preakness, and Woody Stephens, was making his third start of the year and his first since June 6. He moved up to take the early lead in the 1 1/16-mile race, was kept under a snug hold by jockey Roberto Alvarado Jr., and steadily drew away from his opposition to finish under a hand ride.

Although the time of the race was a pedestrian 1:44.80, he was given a Beyer Speed Figure of 106, the second highest of his career, trailing only the 110 he earned while defeating Honor Code in a March 2014 allowance race at Gulfstream Park.

“The track was dead on Saturday,” Guerrero said. “It was kind of slow.”

Guerrero said he is pointing Social Inclusion for the $150,000 Bayern Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on the Pennsylvania Derby undercard Sept. 19.

“Since he has only had the one start, I think I can put a couple of races for him back to back,” Guerrero said.

Guerrero is working to get Social Inclusion to relax better.

“When he first came to me, he would go all out for a half-mile and spit the bit,” Guerrero said. “He is doing better now. We are trying to get him to relax and go slow early, and then finish. But when the race comes, he gets a little edgy.”

For several reasons, Guerrero grooms Social Inclusion himself each day.

“He’s mean; he’ll hurt you if you don’t know how to handle him,” he said. “So I do him myself so nobody gets hurt. It also lets me stay on top of his legs. I see him up close every day this way.”

Social Inclusion has always had a lot of ability but at times has been his own worst enemy, acting up at the gate, fighting with his riders.

“I want to teach him how to go a distance; how to run,” Guerrero said. “I don’t think he knows how to run yet. He has so much talent.”

◗ The Parx Fall Festival really hits its stride this weekend, with five $100,000 Pennsylvania-bred stakes on Saturday and three open stakes, two of which are graded, on Monday.

The Labor Day stakes are the Grade 3, $300,000 Turf Monster Handicap at five furlongs; the Grade 3, $200,000 Greenwood Cup at 1 1/2 miles; and the $200,000 Turf Amazon Handicap, a five-furlong turf sprint for fillies and mares.