- GIANTS ARE TONIGHT’S PRIORITY FOR ALAN SHERMAN
- IF STEVENS HAD HIS CLASSIC DRUTHERS, IT’S BAYERN
- NO. 1 NOT ELLIS’ FAVORITE FOR SEEKING THE SHERIF
- FLORES: WHEN IT RAINS IT POURS IN SINGAPORE
BASEBALL BEFORE RACING TONIGHT FOR ALAN SHERMAN
Alan Sherman, like everyone else involved with Team California Chrome, is focused on
Saturday’s $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, with Horse of the Year ramifications rampant.
But the son of and assistant to the colt’s trainer, Art Sherman, will deviate briefly tonight to root for the San Francisco Giants in the seventh and deciding game of the World Series against the Kansas City Royals.
Based during his training career in the Bay Area, a hotbed for fans who support San Francisco teams, Alan has been riding shotgun for his dad during California Chrome’s Triple Crown run last spring. He continues as the California-bred colt seeks victory in the Classic.
“Last night was a little disappointing,” Sherman understated, referring to Kansas City’s 10-0 shellacking of the Giants that knotted the series at three wins apiece. Veteran 39-year-old right-hander Tim Hudson starts for the Giants tonight rather than their ace, Madison Bumgarner, who blanked the Royals in Game Five Sunday and is 2-0 in the series.
“I’m a little surprised they’re not starting Bumgarner,” Sherman said. “But I’m sure he’ll be ready if they need him. Tonight it’s all hands on deck.”
Ditto Saturday at Santa Anita.
STEVENS WOULD OPT FOR BAYERN IN SATURDAY’S CLASSIC
On the comeback trail with a newly replaced right knee, Gary Stevens has no mount in
this year’s Breeders’ Cup Classic, but, like everyone else with even a glimmer of interest in Saturday’s World Championship event at a mile and a quarter that could determine 2014 Horse of the Year, he has an opinion.
“Bayern,” answered the 51-year-old Hall of Fame jockey when asked which horse he would like to ride, given the chance. “He doesn’t have to be in front. I would ride him just like I rode Beholder last year.”
Beholder relaxed nicely in third while tracking the pace in last year’s $2 million Distaff, then opened a clear lead with a quarter mile to go in the 1 1/8-mile race, and went on to win by 4 ¼ lengths.
Stevens has ridden Bayern four times, winning three, including the Grade II Woody Stephens by 7 1/2 lengths last June 7.
Stevens, who won last year’s Classic by a nose aboard Mucho Macho Man, makes his return to the races Friday aboard trainer Chad Brown’s Irish-bred Sivoliere in the $1.5 million Juvenile Fillies Turf (eighth race). He also rides Bob Baffert’s 3-year-old gelding Day of Fury in the 10th race, a first condition allowance. The Caldwell, Idaho native has one mount on Saturday, Brown’s Bakken in the $1.5 million Xpressbet Sprint (10th race).
Stevens underwent replacement surgery on his knee July 25.
BARGAIN CLAIM SEEKING THE SHERIF EYES $1.5 MILLION SPRINT
Trainer Ron Ellis points out that Seeking the Sherif does not have to be on the lead in order to win.
Frugally and judiciously haltered by the trainer for $12,500 at Santa Anita last December for an ownership group, Seeking the Sherif has gone on to win five of eight subsequent starts, including the Katella Stakes at Los Alamitos on Sept. 20.
A speedy 5-year-old son of Officer, the bay Kentucky-bred gelding drew the rail for Saturday’s $1.5 million Breeders’ Cup Xpressbet Sprint at six furlongs. Seeking the Sherif has failed to be in front at some point in the race only twice in 11 career starts, seven of which he won.
“It looks like there are a couple speed horses in there,” Ellis said upon early perusal of the Sprint past performances. “Seeking the Sherif is going to be in the first flight, that’s for sure.
But he doesn’t have to be on the lead. In the Katella, he sat second to a fast horse and went by like nothing, so I don’t think he has to be in front.”
Seeking the Sherif worked four furlongs Sunday in 47.40, handily from the gate.
“It (the rail post position) certainly wasn’t what we would have hoped for,” Ellis said. “It’s disappointing, but we’ll have to deal with it.”
TICKETS AVAILABLE FOR BREEDERS’ CUP AT SANTA ANITA
Santa Anita hosts the Breeders’ Cup World Championships for the third consecutive year Friday and Saturday. The two-day event includes live music, star sightings and the best Thoroughbreds worldwide vying for $26 million in prize money.
General admission tickets are $10 in advance online or $15 at the gate on Friday, and $25 in advance online or $40 at the gate Saturday. On line ticket sales end at midnight Thursday.
For access to the Infield only, admission on Friday is $5 and on Saturday $10, both available only via Gate 6 on Colorado Place. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and a wide variety of food trucks will also be available Saturday in the Infield.
In addition, City of Arcadia residents with ID and children under 14 are admitted free to the Infield only on Friday.
FLORES A FAMILIAR FACE AT CLOCKERS’ CORNER
With Breeders’ Cup week beginning in earnest, it was hard to tell the players without a scorecard at Clockers’ Corner on a spectacular Wednesday morning at Santa Anita, but one didn’t need any ID. He was jockey David Flores, a fixture on the Southern California circuit for three decades who has been riding the past 10 months in Singapore.
“It’s a good experience; it’s a new world, a different world,” the 46-year-old Flores said of his new venture. “The system is different, but horse racing is horse racing no matter where you go. You adapt.”
Asked if he planned to return to Southern California, Flores said, “Yes, eventually. But as long as we get licensed in Singapore, I’m very happy over there. I like it. The weather is the same all year. It rains pretty much every day.”
SMACK TALK BACK IN THE ‘VANN’ GUARD IN GOLDEN STATE JUVENILE
Smack Talk makes his first start in more than three months when he runs in the $200,000 Golden State Juvenile, one of the supporting features on Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup card.
“He had a little bit of a shin, nothing major,” trainer Vann Belvoir said of the California-bred son of Stormin Fever, who won his only start, a five furlong maiden allowance test at Del Mar on July 17, by 3 ¼ lengths.
“We backed off and jogged him for 30 days and have been getting him ready to run back here.”
Peradventure, now conditioned by Belvoir and also entered in the Golden State Juvenile, had been trained by Scott Rollins before Belvoir recently took over. “I just picked him up,” the trainer said. “He worked on the grass and we were pointing for a grass race, but he got excluded.
“Peradventure has speed and should be on the lead. Smack Talk should be tracking.”
The field for the seven furlong Golden State Juvenile, race two on a 12-race program that starts at 10:15 a.m.: Acceptance, Elvis Trujillo; Wake Up Nick, Mario Gutierrez; Peradventure, Alex Solis; Smack Talk, Joe Talamo; Comanche Ruler, Drayden Van Dyke; Mischief Clem, Kent Desormeaux; Pulmarack, Mike Smith; and Truely Quick, Edwin Maldonado.
TRAINER HOPES OCHO IS ENOUGH IN TURF SPRINT
Ocho Ocho Ocho jumps from a maiden allowance win to stakes company when he starts in Saturday’s $100,000 Juvenile Turf Sprint for 2-year-olds at about 6 ½ furlongs on the downhill course.
“He’s doing really well,” trainer Jim Cassidy said of the son of 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense. “I liked him (when he broke his maiden, coming from just off the pace to win by a length on Oct. 11), but I didn’t like him that much,” which could explain why he was 4-1 in his debut.
As to his name, which translates to eight, eight, eight in English, “That was his hip number (at the Ocala sale),” Cassidy explained.
FINISH LINES: John Sadler, third with a bullet in the trainers’ standings with ninewins,onthe French-bred colt Talco in Friday’s $200,000 Twilight Derby for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles on turf: “We were real happy with his race at Del Mar,” he said, referring to a rallying third in his U.S. debut after a slow start in the Grade II Del Mar Derby Aug. 31. “We hadn’t had him very long. He got here about two weeks before the race, so it was a good beginning.” . . Leading rider Rafael Bejarano has been suspended three days (Nov. 8, 9 and 13) for causing interference on Temeeku in the fourth race last Saturday resulting in a disqualification from first to second. With five racing days remaining, Bejarano holds a 23-18 lead over Joe Talamo in the race for riding honors . . . Daylight Saving Time begins Sunday, Nov. 2. Turn your clocks back one hour Saturday night. Accordingly, first post time on Sunday is early, at 12 noon.
|SANTA ANITA STATISTICS|
|(Current Through Sunday, Oct. 26)|
|Drayden Van Dyke||108||13||13||14||12%||$507,602|
|Robert Hess, Jr.||19||4||1||3||21%||$109,600|