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Gulfstream News & Notes
McPeek ‘Leaning’ Toward Running Frac Daddy in Holy Bull
Trainer Ken McPeek has added Frac Daddy to the list of prospective candidates for the $400,000 Holy Bull (G3) at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 26.
"I’m leaning towards maybe running him in the Holy Bull,” said McPeek, who had originally targeted the Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream on Feb. 23 as his
3-year-old’s stakes debut. “We don’t have to decide today. We’ll just see how he does for the next week or two.”
Frac Daddy worked five furlongs in company with 2012 Travers Stakes winner Golden Ticket at Gulfstream on Saturday morning. The 3-year-old son of Scat Daddy and his 4-year-old stablemate were timed in 59 4/5 seconds.
“It was a good work, excellent. They pretty much worked together. He (Frac Daddy) got a little tired the last part of it, but we’re getting him ready,” said McPeek, whose colt was ridden by jockey David Cohen.
Frac Daddy concluded his 2-year-old campaign with a close second-place finish in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 24. The Kentucky-bred colt debuted with a second-place finish on turf at Belmont in October before breaking his maiden by nearly 10 lengths at Churchill on Nov. 3.
“I’ll either run him in an allowance or the stake (on Jan. 26). I can take that up to a few days before,” McPeek said.
Mucho Macho Man Preps for Florida Sunshine Millions Classic
Mucho Macho Man breezed a half-mile in 46 3/5 seconds Saturday morning before galloping out five furlongs in 59 3/5 seconds under exercise rider Nick Petro Jr. The 5-year-old son of Macho Uno is scheduled to defend his title in the $400,000 Florida Sunshine Millions Classic at Gulfstream Park on Jan. 19.
"He went good,” trainer Kathy Ritvo said. “He’s doing really well.”
Mucho Macho Man, who defeated Ron the Greek by 1 ½ lengths in last year’s Classic, is coming off a second-place finish in the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, in which he finished a half-length behind Fort Larned.
“I can’t describe the feeling,” said Petro when asked how it feels riding the long-striding multiple-stakes winner. “It’s like riding a train.”
Another horse on Gulfstream's main track Saturday morning was Breeders' Cup Turf (G1) and Arlington Million (G1) winner Little Mike, who worked for the first time this year, going a very easy half mile in :50. The gelding is getting ready for a trip to Dubai later this winter.
Bad Debt, Slews Answer on Target for Sunshine Millions Turf
Robert Leibner’s highly-consistent 6-year-old gelding Bad Debt ran a good third in the $150,000 Sunshine Millions Turf at Gulfstream Park a year ago behind Eclipse Award candidate Little Mike and Slews Answer, and will get another try in next Saturday’s renewal of the 1 1/8 miles turf test.
“We’re planning to run," said trainer Michael Trombetta from Laurel Park where he has his main division in action while having a small South Florida string.
“He had a little trouble at the start in the race last year, but nobody was going to beat Little Mike that day. He’s been a very reliable horse and fun to have over the past few years.” A son of Grand Reward, Bad Debt finished sixth last out in a bulky field of 13 behind Nikki’s Sandcastle in the one-mile El Prado Stakes here on Dec. 22, although beaten only 3 ½ lengths for it all.
The El Prado broke a streak of 19 races in which Bad Debt had finished one-two-three going back to November of 2010. Trombetta claimed Bad Debt for his Washington D.C. owner at Monmouth Park on June 18 for $35,000. His two biggest victories have both come in the $125,000 Bonnie Heath Turf Cup at Calder in 2011 defeating Picou and again last November by a neck over Speak Easy Gal.
Live Oak Plantation’s 6-year-old gelding Slews Answer, runner-up to Little Mike in the Sunshine Millions Turf last year, is also training at Palm Meadows, but trainer Graham Motion said Friday afternoon that his participation was “doubtful as of today. I was hoping for him to make the race, but we’ve cut it a little close and not sure he can be ready.”
A son of Ghostzapper, Slews Answer didn’t make his career debut until he was a 4-year-old here in early 2011, winning his debut on turf and finishing second in an allowance race before scoring in the Turf Classic at Tampa Bay Downs in his third start.
Following the Sunshine Millions last year he made only two more starts, finishing third defending his Turf Classic victory at Tampa Bay and a sixth-place finish last out in the Da Hoss Stakes at Colonial Downs on June 16.