03/15/2008 11:00PM

Wait a While sidelined with leg injury


ARCADIA, Calif. - There were 15 older fillies and mares nominated to the Grade 2, $150,000 Santa Ana Handicap on turf March 23 at Santa Anita, but one name was conspicuous by its absence. Wait a While, the champion 3-year-old filly of 2006 and an accomplished turf horse, was being pointed to the Santa Ana, but was not nominated. And you might have to wait a while to see her.

"She has a callous on her left rear tibia," her trainer, Todd Pletcher, said Saturday from Florida. "She'll be out approximately 30 days. She's at Hollywood Park now, but she'll ship with our division to Churchill Downs and resume training the first week of April."

Pletcher said the injury was first discovered via a nuclear scan, then was confirmed with radiographs.

"It's a bump. It could develop into a fracture if we'd have continued training and didn't stop," Pletcher said.

Wait a While has been based all winter at Hollywood Park. She last worked on Feb. 17, when she traveled a half-mile in 48.80 seconds. She has not raced since capturing the San Gorgonio Handicap here on Jan. 14. In her final start of 2007, she was second in Hollywood Park's Matriarch Stakes to Precious Kitten.

With Wait a While out of the 1 1/8-mile Santa Ana, her regular rider, Garrett Gomez, is expected to pick up the mount on Bobby Frankel-trained Costume, who won the one-mile Buena Vista Handicap on Feb. 18 after finishing fourth to Wait a While in the San Gorgonio.

Black Mamba, who was second in the Buena Vista, is also expected to run, as are South American imports Colina Verde and Immortelle, who finished one-two in their first U.S. starts in a money-allowance race on Feb. 11, and Lavender Sky, who won a first-level allowance race Feb. 2 after finishing second in the San Gorgonio.

Seven likely for San Luis Rey

A field of seven, headed by long-distance specialists Obrigado and On the Acorn, is expected to compete Saturday in the Grade 2, $200,000 San Luis Rey Handicap at 1 1/2 miles.

Obrigado was third in the 1 1/4-mile San Marcos Handicap on Jan. 19 to Champs Elysees, who subsequently finished third in the Santa Anita Handicap. Obrigado is seeking his first victory since Feb. 25, 2007, when he won the 1 1/2-mile San Luis Obispo Handicap.

On the Acorn crossed the wire third in the 2007 San Luis Obispo, was moved up to second on a disqualification, then subsequently won the San Juan Capistrano and Jim Murray Memorial handicaps. He was third last month in the 2008 San Luis Obispo, his first start in more than nine months.

Others expected for the San Luis Rey are Baby First, Boule d'Or, Fitz Flag, Porfido, and Warning Zone.

Boboman back from layoff

Boboman, who won the Grade 1 Hollywood Turf Cup in 2006, returns from a nine-month layoff in Monday's third race, a 1 1/8-mile money-allowance scheduled for turf.

Boboman is winless in four starts since the Turf Cup. He has not raced since finishing fourth in the Californian Stakes on Cushion Track last summer at Hollywood Park.

"He had an ankle chip," said his trainer, Richard Mandella. "He's a little older, a little on the lazy side, so I'm not sure how he'll run. I'm sympathetic to him, because I feel the same myself.

"He looks good. He'll probably run good. I just need to get him back started."

Trainer Sierra handed suspension

Trainer Cirilo Sierra has been suspended for 15 days by Santa Anita's stewards for violation of a California Horse Racing Board rule related to animal welfare.

According to Scott Chaney, one of Santa Anita's stewards, Sierra "worked a horse in contravention to the official veterinarian."

The horse was seeking to get off the veterinarian's list, but was not given the okay to work that morning by the veterinarian. The horse was not injured in the workout, Chaney said.

* El Gato Malo, who was second to Colonel John in the Sham Stakes earlier this month, breezed five furlongs in 1:02.20 on Saturday morning at Hollywood Park for trainer Craig Dollase. He is scheduled to have a rematch with Colonel John on April 5 in the Grade 1, $750,000 Santa Anita Derby.