Hoping to get Declan's Moon, the 2-year-old champion male of 2004, back on the winning path, Southern California trainer Ron Ellis has entered the gelding in a one-mile allowance event for older horses at Golden Gate Fields Saturday.
Declan's Moon, a Maryland-bred son of Malibu Moon , won the first five starts of his career and earned the Eclipse Award as the nation's outstanding male juvenile runner of 2004 when he went 4-for-4. The perfect campaign featured victories in the Del Mar Futurity (gr. II), Hollywood Prevue Stakes (gr. III) and Hollywood Futurity (gr. I).
After opening his 3-year-old season with a victory in the Santa Catalina Stakes (gr. II), Declan's Moon was being pointed to the Triple Crown events. Unfortunately, he was found to have a knee problem and the injury ended his 3-year-old campaign.
Declan's Moon has made only four starts since his Santa Catalina win on March 5, 2005. He was winless in three starts in 2006, including a third in the Vernon O. Underwood Stakes (gr. III) at Hollywood Park on Dec. 2. In his first race this year, the 1 1/16-mile San Pasqual Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita on Jan. 6, Declan's Moon battled for the lead to mid-stretch before tiring to finish last.
Jockey Jose Valdivia, Jr., who is based in Southern California, is making the trip to Golden Gate Fields Saturday to ride Declan's Moon. A 5-year-old gelding owned by Samantha Siegel and her father, Mace, Declan's Moon has earned $650,300.
Declan's Moon will face five horses in Saturday's $40,000 allowance feature, which goes as the second race at 1:15 p.m. His rivals are Dr. Einstein, My Creed, Passive Income, Raise the Bluff, and Real Temptation.