04/23/2012 12:52PM

Tampa Bay Downs: Phipps heading to Colonial, Delaware after meet ends


OLDSMAR, Fla. – Will Phipps, who won a race on Friday and then unleashed a promising Unbridled Song 3-year-old filly named Lorelei’s Song on Sunday to win at first asking for his sixth win of the meeting, reports he will not race in New York this summer as he has in the past, instead taking his stable first to Colonial Downs and then on to Delaware when that Virginia oval closes.

“Several of my owners have Virginia ties, including Peter Vegso,” he said. :The bulk of my stable consists of turf horses and we will have ample opportunities to race with the majority of their cards being made up of grass races.”

Phipps, who spent five years as an assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott, also reports he will be getting some young horses from the famed Live Oak Plantation operation and that he will be working to develop those runners as the season progresses.

“Live Oak has decided to race in venues other than New York and Florida in order to give their runners a better chance to show what they can do,” Phipps said. “There are some very promising youngsters on the farm getting ready to come to the track and hopefully there will be some future stars in the group.”

Phipps, who had a full string on the backstretch here for the first time this season, says he hopes he will be able to return next season.

“It’s a good surface to train over and the weather’s spectacular,” he said.

Camilo branching out

Trainer Juan Camilo signed the claim slip for three different runners on Friday’s 11-race program at Tampa Bay Downs.

Camilo, who has been the trainer for Larry Vaughn’s L and D Farm for more than 10 years and has had few runners from other owners, took British Q for Miguel Diaz from a win for $8,000. He then haltered My Andean Spirit for M and M Racing for $8,000 from a fifth-place finish that became a seventh due to a disqualification, and then took another for M and M in the nightcap, spending $16,000 to claim Financial Pathway from a win on the turf.

Camilo explained that while he and Vaughn were still on good terms and he would still have horses for him, he would be taking some outside owners when he shipped out of Tampa in early May.

“The L and D operation has cut back over the past several seasons, and while Larry still has some horses, the stable volume is nowhere near what it was five or 10 years back,” Camilo said. “I have had some owners who have asked me in the past if I would take some horses for them. In the past it wasn’t a workable situation, but now it is.”

Camilo very quietly had a good meeting at Delaware Park last summer, winning 5 races from 26 starts, and he said he may return to that venue this summer or may head south to Calder, depending on his stall situation. But no matter where he winds up, Camilo said that L and D Farm will remain a part of his life.

“I’ve been connected with L and D since I was a jockey riding for John Shoemaker and Larry will always be my top guy,” he said.

◗ Jorge Navarro, who sent out Bear Always to set the track record for a mile and 40 yards of 1:39.07 last Friday, has now won 8 of his last 18 starts for a win percentage of 44 percent. Navarro is in a battle with Gerald Bennett for second-leading trainer. Navarro won with his single starter on Sunday to run his win total to 29, while Bennett finished second with his only starter in the seventh race to remain at 28 victories.