Route Likely for Crafty C.T., Zucker Says

(from track report).
Crafty C.T., second by three lengths to Smooth Jazz as the 9-10 favorite in Sunday's Commonwealth Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. II) at seven furlongs at Keeneland, is likely to stretch out in his next start.

"He was compromised by a really strong track bias," trainer Howard Zucker said on a spectacular Wednesday morning at Santa Anita's Clockers' Corner. "When that track is dry, the rail and the speed are just golden. The jocks and everybody knows it, but I couldn't take my horse out of his game. Plus I didn't think he could get the lead. The way he's been running, I think we've got to try him long one time."

Smooth Jazz got the early lead in the Commonwealth and Crafty C.T., about five lengths off the pace on the backstretch, was never able to get on even terms after switching to the outside in the stretch.

"He ran a distance very well as a 3-year-old so we might stretch out one time and see if that's what he wants, because he's not really showing the early speed that he can. We were trying to keep him closer (in the Commonwealth), but he's not showing the power away from the gate that he used to as a young horse."

Crafty C.T. won the one-mile San Rafael (gr. II) and finished second to Point Given in the 2001 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) at 1 1/8 mile.

Zucker said Crafty C.T. was cut up behind on his right knee in the Commonwealth. Zucker is considering a race at a mile or a mile and sixteenth for the 5-year-old son of Crafty Prospector's next start.

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