04/19/2006 12:00AM

Yes He's a Pistol will tackle Texas Mile next


GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - Yes He's a Pistol, an improving horse who turned in a career effort last out at Santa Anita, is being pointed for the Grade 3, $300,000 Texas Mile at Lone Star Park on April 29, said his trainer, Doug O'Neill.

Yes He's a Pistol won the $109,450 Santana Mile Handicap by a length over stakes winner Dixie Meister in his last start March 12. He covered the distance in 1:35.41 and earned a Beyer Speed Figure of 102.

"It was a pretty deep race," said O'Neill. "He broke from the outside and made the front and kept going. The time was fast, the number was good, and he came out of it well."

It was the second straight win for Yes He's a Pistol, who captured an optional claiming race over 6 1/2 furlongs at Santa Anita in February. He won by five lengths and earned a Beyer Figure of 97. O'Neill claimed Yes He's a Pistol for $80,000 last October on behalf of clients Charlie Henry Bibby and STD Racing Stable.

"He seems like he's getting good," said O'Neill.

Garrett Gomez has ridden Yes He's a Pistol twice, in the optional claimer and the Santana Mile, and will likely be aboard him in the Texas Mile.

"Unless he's real active that day at Hollywood Park, he's going to plan on going," said O'Neill. "That will definitely give us more confidence."

Last year, O'Neill came to Texas with Supah Blitz and sent him out to win a four-way photo in the Grade 3 Lone Star Park Handicap.

O'Neill also is considering Jealous Profit for the Grade 3, $300,000 Walmac Lone Star Derby on May 13. Last weekend, Jealous Profit was fifth in the Grade 2, $1 million Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn.

Jealous Profit is multiple stakes-placed, having finished third to eventual champion Stevie Wonderboy in the Grade 2 Del Mar Futurity and third to Brother Derek in the Grade 2 Norfolk. He flew from Oaklawn to his Southern California base on Tuesday.

Services set for Akili Gray

Jockey Akili Gray, who sustained head injuries in a spill last July at Gillespie County Fair in Fredericksburg, Texas, died Friday, said Sam Spence, a chaplain serving racetracks in Texas. Gray was 30.

The spill occurred in a race July 2, when Gray's mount stumbled and threw him, and Gray was hit by trailing horses. He underwent brain surgery for an aneurysm following the spill. Gray died from complications from the head injuries.

Spence said a memorial service for Gray will be held at Lone Star Park on Tuesday, at 1:30 p.m. Central. Retama Park will also conduct a memorial service for him Tuesday.

Waupaca class of feature Friday

Waupaca is the class of the field Friday in the featured ninth race, a one-mile turf allowance that has a purse of $36,000. A multiple stakes winner of $409,275, he comes into the allowance off a fourth-place finish in the

Grade 3, $200,000 Connally Breeders' Cup Handicap on April 8.

One start before the Connally, Waupaca won an optional claimer on turf at Sam Houston on March 4. He is a multiple winner over the Lone Star turf. Trainer Donnie Von Hemel has given the mount to Quincy Hamilton.

Others of interest in the eight-horse field include A R Crackers, the winner of last year's $50,000 Retama Turf Breeders' Cup; Cajole, who is looking for his third straight win; Zydeco Affair; and Runaway Choice.