(Edited Calder report)
Last year’s Eclipse Award winning sprint champions -- Benny the Bull and Indian Blessing -- are among the 96 horses nominated to the 10th annual Summit of Speed at Calder Race Course, to be held this year on Saturday, July 11.
Trained by Bob Baffert, Indian Blessing is one of 12 distaffers nominated to the grade I, $350,000 Princess Rooney Handicap. The 4-year-old daughter of Indian Charlie won or placed in all nine starts in 2008 as she was voted champion female sprinter.
A 6-year-old son of Lucky Lionel trained by Richard Dutrow, Benny the Bull is one of 11 horses nominated to the $350,000 Smile Sprint Handicap (gr. II), which he won last year en route to being named champion sprinter.
The seven sprint stakes that comprise the Summit offer a total of $1.45 million in purses.
The nominations and their Equibase past performance lines are available on the Calder web site at www.calderracecourse.com/horsemen. Entries will be taken on Monday, July 6.
The races are:
--$350,000 Princess Rooney Handicap, grade I, fillies & mares, six furlongs
--$350,000 Smile Sprint Handicap, grade II, 3-year-olds & up, six furlongs
--$200,000 Carry Back Stakes, grade II, 3-year-olds, six furlongs
--$200,000 Azalea Stakes, grade III, 3-year-old fillies, six furlongs
--$150,000 Bob Umphrey Turf Sprint, 3-year-olds & up,five furlongs, turf
--$100,000 Frank Gomez Memorial Stakes, 2-year-olds, six furlongs
--$100,000 J J’s Dream Stakes, 2-year-old fillies, six furlongs
The Princess Rooney Handicap and Smile Sprint Handicap are part of the Breeders’ Cup Challenge ‘Win and You’re In’ program, whereby the winner of each race automatically qualifies for her and his respective division at the $25.5 million 2009 Breeders' Cup World Championships, to be run Nov. 6-7 during the Oak Tree Meeting at Santa Anita.