Stopping the Clock

Below are some 3-year-olds I have on my watch list that turned in works during the past five days. A few of them are on everyone's Triple Crown Trail, while others are horses that some of you have told me to keep an eye out for.

I don't expect all of these horses to make a serious run at the Kentucky Derby, but some are worth noting simply for the fact that they running this weekend and have a decent chance to win.

Keep sending your Derby hopefuls and I'll put them in my watch list. I'll try to give updates when they work or are entered. It's still early enough on the trail that we can all hope to be the first ones to find the next star!

Later this week, I'll break down the San Rafael Stakes from Santa Anita.

Beethoven (Sky Mesa--Moonlight Sonata, By Carson City) - Jan. 10 at Gulfstream, five furlongs in 1:01.80, breezing. The Kentucky Jockey Club winner will make his 3-year-old debut in the Holy Bull Stakes on Jan. 31 for John Ward. 

Big Drama (Montbrook-Riveting Drama, by Notebook) - Jan. 11 at Calder, seven furlongs in 1:32, breezing. The Delta Jackpot winner will also his make his 2009 debut in the highly-anticipated Holy Bull.

Gallant Son (Malabar Gold-Explicitly, by Exploit) - Jan. 10 at Golden Gate, six furlongs in 1:15, handily. Opened eyes as a 2-year-old at Emerald Downs by winning four straight. Finished seventh in BC Juvenile. Will make 2009 debut against probable favorite Chocolate Candy this Saturday in the California Derby. Looking forward to seeing how he does against a good field.

I Want Revenge (Stephen Got Even-Meguial, by Roy) - Jan. 12 at Hollywood, five furlongs in 1:00.60, handily. Second by a nose to Pioneerof the Nile in the CashCall Futurity, he is an improving horse from the barn of Jeff Mullins.

It Happened Again (Proud Citizen-Quiet Luck, by Quiet American) - Jan. 12 at Fair Grounds, five furlongs in 1:12.40, breezing. He is the third promising 3-year-old in the barn of Larry Jones. Broke his maiden at second asking in October before finishing a disappointing eighth in the Sugar Bowl last month at Fair Grounds. Has been entered in the Triple Sec Stakes at Delta Downs on Friday. Like Friesan Fire, Jones is hoping this talented colt starts to put it all together. Top jockey Gabriel Saez has the mount.

No Detour (Catienus-Single Goer, by Easy Goer) - Jan. 9 at Gulfstream, five furlongs in 1:02.80, breezing. He is one of Ken Ramsey's highly-regarded 3-year-olds. Is 0-for-3 so far with a pair of runner-ups. May not be a prime Kentucky Derby candidate, but is worth taking a serious look at on Thursday at Gulfstream in his maiden special weight contest. Julien Leparoux rides the 5/2 morning-line favorite.

Pioneerof the Nile (Empire Maker-Star of Goshen, by Lord At War) - Jan. 11 at Santa Anita, five furlongs on :57.60, handily. The CashCall Futurity winner had the best work of 74 horses that day on pro-Ride. The Bob Baffert trainee will make his 2009 debut on Feb. 7 in the Robert B. Lewis Stakes.

Silver City (Unbridled's Song-Proposal, by Mt. Livermore) - Jan. 11 at Fair Grounds, four furlongs in :48.20 breezing. Trained by Bret Calhoun, this colt has won his last two, the last one by 4 1/2 length Nov. 29 in allowance company. Is entered in the Dixieland Stakes on Friday at Oaklawn.

Stardom Bound (Tapit-My White Corvette, by Tarr Road) - Jan. 12 at Santa Anita, five furlongs in :59.40, handily. The probable Eclipse Award-winning filly turned in the third best work of 48 to go that day. No official word on her 2009 debut, but she may go to the Las Virgenes on Feb. 9.

Strategic Decision (Distorted Humor-Beautiful Pleasure, by Maudlin) - Jan. 10 at Gulfstream, four furlongs in :50.20. Third in his debut, the John Ward trainee is worth keeping an eye on. He runs in the sixth at Gulfstream on Wednesday.

The Pamplemousse (Kafwain-Comfort Zone, by Rubiano) - Jan. 14 at Santa Anita, three furlongs in :35.20, handily. Broke maiden impressively Dec. 14 at Hollywood going 1 1/16 miles. Will face a promising field of 3-year-olds in this weekend's San Rafael, including Brother Keith and Square Eddie. Will be able to tell a lot more after that.


Leave a Comment:

War Pass!

One horse that I believe should be watched is Robert LaPenta's Ruler's Vision.  His last race was not as impressive as his debut at Saratoga this summer, except he has been turning in good workouts, and certainly will become a force to be reckoned with!

14 Jan 2009 3:48 PM
Greg J.

Call me a dreamer or Crazy, BUT everyone keep your eye on Nicanor & Rockland.....Maybe not the Derby for Nicanor (too early for him), but Preakness and Belmont. Call it a gut feeling....

14 Jan 2009 4:34 PM

Capt. Candyman Can



Palm Meadows


5 Furlongs




Chocolate Candy



Golden Gate Fields

All Weather Track

5 Furlongs







Fair Grounds


5 Furlongs




14 Jan 2009 4:42 PM

Why has Mr. Fantasy's debut win gone virtually unnoticed?

14 Jan 2009 5:23 PM
Abbie Knowles

As i live in the UK unless i go on the Brisnet Bloodstock Journal website i have little idea about what times the colts and fillies are clocking, so just go on my enornmous bias towards Seattle Slew and support anything with his name anywhere in their pedigrees!!!!!!!!! Which means of course that of those you mention they are Beethoven, Stardom Bound (hope she IS!!!!!!!!!) and I Want Revenge.  The latter has a very silly name but I love the names Beethoven and Stardom Bound!

God Speed all you "SLEWS"

God Bless


14 Jan 2009 5:40 PM

Gallant Son will answer the question this weekend, is he the real deal? A good horse can come from anywhere, and it would be fun to see a horse based in Washington hit the Derby trail.

14 Jan 2009 6:44 PM
Jason Shandler

Thanks Adam!

14 Jan 2009 6:51 PM
Zenyatta Junior

One horse who I hope finds his way to the KY Trail is Trinity Magic, from Steve Asmussen's barn.

He is a New York Bred and he won the 2008 Bertram F. Bongard Stakes and the Sleepy Hollow Stakes. Funny Cide won both of those races at two before his Derby/Preakness glory... would be neat to see, but a longshot.

14 Jan 2009 7:28 PM

Ditto Mr. Fantasy and his snappy debut!  Won 6f debut on 12/28 by 10 1/2 lengths and earned a 107 bris, 97 beyer.  Sired by E Dubai out of a Spectacular Bid mare.

4f workout today at Belmont 00:47:63 handily.

Half brother to Tin Cup Chalice.

14 Jan 2009 7:55 PM
Derby Mass

My favorite prospect from the McPeek barn would be Free Country,  but all are promising.  

Silver City looks to show something big friday in the Dixieland. I will watch this race very close.

Shafted is highest from the Cassee barn on my list, but Pateana beat this colt in the Display up at Woodbine in December.  Very interesting.

My last thought is on Kopitar in the Dania Beach at Gulfstream this saturday because of the horses he beat in his debut (Indygo Mountain, and Au Moon) who broke their maidens impressively next out.

14 Jan 2009 8:54 PM

Abbie Knowles:  I called it first,lol...I'm with ya' though.The Slews' just have so much class to them,it's a mystery why they haven't won a bunch of TC races...oh,well!

I'm starting to give a closer look at Shafted and I Want Revenge too.It sure as hell seems like they'll love the longer distances.Hopefully they'll get to run on dirt before the Derby,I'm sure they won't have a problem with it...also look for Beethoven to run a bang-up race in the tough,tough Holy Bull!.Mr. Ward is very high on him.

Bet the Slews' Baby!!!!  Peace!

14 Jan 2009 8:55 PM

What is Charitable Man doing?

14 Jan 2009 9:05 PM
Yvonne Kirby

What happened to Point Encounter?

14 Jan 2009 11:55 PM
Sunny Crest Farm's NYB ( Bill)

MR.FANTASY has all of the credentials and may history repeat for another NYB Ky.Derby Winner. He's bred to go long w/ EDubai o/o a Spectacular Bid mare. He won as impressive as when I saw and picked SEATTLE SLEW to win the Derby after his mdn win. Also, another feather in this colts hat is the trainer, Kiaran McGlaughlin.

I'm betting him in the Vegas futures, hope he comes in @ 100-1.

15 Jan 2009 8:40 AM

I'm also watching the Catienus colt, Notonthesamepage, trained by Wesley Ward.  He is headed for the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream on February 28th. He won the Spectacular Bid impressively on January 3rd.  I love his broodmare line which is Blue Holiday by Cure the Blues.

15 Jan 2009 8:58 AM
Tom J

Pennsylvania Nursery Winner Saint Johns Gospel has to be considered a contender. He has Four starts with two wins and two second place finishes. He has an allowance test on Monday the 19th at Philly Park. Keep an eye on this Activist Colt. Tom J

15 Jan 2009 11:09 AM

Look people; It's a simple as this. The derby winner is simply "OLD FASHIONED" Mark these words!!!!!

15 Jan 2009 11:58 AM
Jason Shandler

All: Keep ALMA D'ORO on your watchlist. Just saw him break his maiden at a mile at Gulfstream. Did it with ease. Trained by our buddy Ricky Dutrow.

15 Jan 2009 2:24 PM

 Whooo's buddy Jason? Thanks for the tip.

15 Jan 2009 3:49 PM
Abbie Knowles

Seattle Slew and his sons nd dughters do not always seem to hit the ground running as 2 Y O's do they?  Well why would they?  They are, after all, very immature then!!!  However at 3 they can make enormous improvement eg Rags to Riches.  Unplaced in one start at 2 but at 3 ... well we all know what a history maker she was at 3!  Can hardly wait for her foal by The Giant (Giant's Causeway) to race!  But hope he/she does not race at 2 but starts off at 3 or 4!  

You guessed i am not overly keen on the racing of two year olds!  I do not try to be controversial i just am!  I put the horses first not the punters or anyone else.  i would like what is best for the horses themselves and do feel they are exploited somewhat!  Also feel that those who look after them are and that their stable teams and work riders are often underpaid and undervalued.  They are in the UK anyhow!

Sheikh Mohammed annually does an award for Stable Staff over here but they have to be nominated by the trainers they work for and it appears from the low number of nominations reported by the Racing Post that most trainers cannot even be bothered to do that!  It may be better in the U.S.  i do not know!

God Bless


15 Jan 2009 5:28 PM
m palmer

Merus Miami -This horse is 2 for 2 and was sired by Friends Lake one of the best bred young stallion in the US. Friends Lake was sired by HOY A.P. Indy and his dam was sired by HOY Spend A Buck. The leading stallion in the US A.P. Indys was sired by HOY & TC winner Seattle Slew and his dam was sired by HOY & TC winner Secretariat. I expect Merus Miami to handily win the CA Derby and progress from there.

15 Jan 2009 8:18 PM
Fire Slam

Flying Private, by Fupeg, out of an Unbridled mare. Had a chance to see him leave the barn of Lukas for the walk over of his first race at Churchill Downs. Thick neck, long and athletic front legs, and very tall. One of the best looking horses I have ever seen!

Ran a winning race last out at CD, and has posted a work at Oaklawn. DL may be trying to slide under the radar with this one.

15 Jan 2009 10:40 PM
Steven M


16 Jan 2009 3:13 PM

Zayat stable just got into the game.Let them pay their dues first,eh?...BTW: nice win by Flat OUT! Very professional,authoritative score in the Smarty Jones Stakes.He Looks/acts like a good one so far.Look for him to keep improving while dominating the Oaklawn Stakes Series.

2 down,many more to go!


21 Jan 2009 11:31 PM
Larry Zap...

I Want Revenge and The Pamplemousse are two horses i have been following...i have been posting horse racing videos on their morning activity/workouts at Santa Anita in the past couple of weeks The youtube channel for Larry Zap is Larryzapeye...enjoy

28 Jan 2009 9:08 AM

How bout Mr. Fantasy? Maiden race won by about 8 lengths, 6 furlongs in a very quick pace of about 1:09....second start, allowance race...mile and an eighth in about  1:45(not quite accurate but very close). I think he has a chance he seems like a good colt.

07 Feb 2009 11:21 PM

Is Charitable Man working out ?

09 Feb 2009 7:48 PM

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