02/16/2010 12:00AM

Southwest, take two, looking much the same


HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - The field for the Grade 3, $250,000 Southwest, which was rescheduled for Saturday after being canceled Monday, should be about the same as its original cast of 10. The connections of Conveyance, Mission Impazible, Cardiff Giant, and Domonation have all expressed their intent to run back, while top Oaklawn-based runners Dublin and Dryfly are a go for what is the first of two preps for the Grade 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby.

The Southwest will be redrawn Thursday. At that time, the field could swell or change if any of the other original 89 nominees enter the one-mile race.

Oaklawn called off the final six races of its Monday card because the track was beginning to "ice up," said spokesperson Terry Wallace. Temperatures were dropping at the time, and a couple of riders reported that clods of dirt had broken their goggles. The jockeys and management then made the joint decision to scrap the remainder of the card.

"As disappointing as it was for everyone, I still think it was the right decision to make," said D. Wayne Lukas, who trains Hopeful winner Dublin. "I wouldn't want to run [Dublin] on anything but a safe track. This extra six days shouldn't mean anything."

Lukas planned to work Dublin back either Tuesday or Wednesday, depending on track condition. The temperature dipped below freezing Monday night, and the track did not open for training until 3 p.m. on Tuesday, after tractors had harrowed the track all day.

Bob Baffert, who trains the Southern California-based Conveyance, said Monday night that he intends to work the horse back at Oaklawn and point for the rescheduled Southwest. The one change for Saturday, he said, might be the rider. Garrett Gomez was here Monday to ride the undefeated Conveyance, but might have commitments elsewhere Saturday.

"We're working on that right now," Baffert said Monday night of the rider situation.

Trainer Todd Pletcher said Eibar Coa is to ride Mission Impazible back in the Southwest, with Johnny Velazquez, who was here to ride the horse Monday, having Saturday commitments at Gulfstream, including riding Eskendereya in the Fountain of Youth. Pletcher on Tuesday said weather permitting he had "penciled in" an easy half-mile breeze for Mission Impazible at Oaklawn on Wednesday.

Velazquez had an eventful trip getting to Hot Springs. A canceled flight left him stuck in Memphis, but the connections of Mission Impazible chartered a flight for him and he arrived here around the time of the mid-card cancellation Monday.

Trainer Gary Thomas on Tuesday was also working on securing a new rider for Kitty's Turn, with the Fair Grounds-based Robby Albarado set to ride in several stakes Saturday at Fair Grounds.

Christian Santiago Reyes, the Eclipse Award-winning apprentice of 2009, will return to ride Cardiff Giant in the Southwest, said Tony Matos, racing manager for the horse's owner, M Racing.

Cardiff Giant was second to Conveyance last out on the Grade 3 San Rafael at Santa Anita. Domonation, who was third in that race, is also likely to go back in the Southwest, said his trainer, John Sadler. He was to work here this week, and is to be ridden by Corey Nakatani.

"Any time you don't get to run it's not the best, but you have to be able to muddle through," Sadler said. "We'll make the best of it. We're going to try to go with the new plan, and hopefully, get some good weather."

The forecast for Saturday was showers with a high of 50 degrees and a low of 36.

Dryfly, the winner of the $100,000 Smarty Jones last month at Oaklawn, was to work back for the Southwest, said his trainer, Lynn Whiting. Cool Bullet, the winner of the Sugar Bowl at Fair Grounds, remains on target for the Southwest and will be ridden by Jon Court, said his trainer, Steve Margolis. Pleasant Storm is another planning to go back in the Southwest, according to his trainer, Joe Petalino.

Lenclud suspended six days

Apprentice Freddie Lenclud has been suspended six race dates for two different riding infractions. There are no plans to appeal the rulings, said his agent, Doc Danner. Lenclud, who is the fourth-leading rider at Oaklawn, will be out from Friday through Feb. 27.

* The minimum number of horses required for a superfecta at Oaklawn has been reduced from eight to seven after a rule permitting the change was passed Saturday by the Arkansas Racing Commission.