Bwana Bull, who is conditioned by Northern California kingpin Jerry Hollendorfer, has had nothing but problems with Zanjero in their last four meetings, finishing second to the Steve Asmussen trainee in the Indiana Derby (gr. II) and the West Virginia Derby (gr. III) and behind him in the Pennsylvania Derby (gr. 11) and Kentucky Derby (gr. I). Zanjero, nominated to the Pegasus as well, was not entered, much to Hollendorfer's relief.
There are only two graded stakes winners among the seven colts and geldings set to line up in the 1 1/8-mile Pegasus, and Bwana Bull, coming off a strong second in the Indiana Derby, is one of them. The son of Holy Bull won the El Camino Real Derby (gr. III) and the California Derby by five lengths on a track rated good in back-to-back Northern California efforts this year.
The other graded winner is Slew's Tizzy, who captured the Lexington (gr. II) at Keeneland and the Lone Star Derby (gr. III) in successive tries this spring for trainer Gregory Fox. The Tiznow colt has been off form, however, in his last four starts, most recently finishing eighth of nine in the Indiana Derby.
Bwana Bull, who breaks from the far outside under Rafael Bejarano, likes to rally from the back, and his style may be compromised in the Pegasus by a lack of pace.
Get Serious adds blinkers for local trainer Patrick McBurney, and he figures to vie for the early fractions along with Actin Good and Now a Victor, who comes off a three-length allowance win for trainer Michael Trombetta.
Helsinki, a deep closer, has finished third in his last two starts for Nick Zito -- Belmont's Brooklyn Handicap (gr. II) Sept. 22 and Saratoga's Travers (gr. I) a month earlier.
Stunt Man is the only starter in the field with a two-turn win at the Pegasus distance of nine furlongs. That came in a New York state-bred stakes at Saratoga in August. Trained by Gary Contessa, Stunt Man was most recently fifth, beaten 13 lengths in Belmont's Jerome Handicap (gr. II) three weeks ago.
$250,000 Pegasus Stakes (gr. III, Race 1, 11 a.m.), 3-Year-Olds, 1 1/8 Miles
PP. Horse, Jockey, Weight, ML Odds
1. Actin Good (FL), Cornelio H. Velasquez, 119, 10/1
2. Get Serious (NY), Charles C. Lopez, 119, 12/1
3. Slew's Tizzy (KY), Robby Albarado, 122, 9/2
4. Stunt Man (NY), Javier Castellano, 119, 4/1
5. Now a Victor (KY), Ramon A. Dominguez, 119, 5/1
6. Helsinki (KY), Julien R. Leparoux, 119, 7/2
7. Bwana Bull (KY), Rafael Bejarano, 122, 2/1