Sid Port's Toasted, who ships in from California, figures to be the slight choice Saturday in the $200,000 Arlington Classic (gr. IIT) at suburban Chicago's Arlington Park.
The 1 1/16-mile grass race for 3-year-olds serves as the first leg of the Mid-America Triple which continues with the grade II $250,000 American Derby on July 24 and grade I Secretariat Stakes on Arlington Million day, Aug. 14.
Trained by Laura de Seroux, Toasted invades Arlington off a second-place finish in the grade III Will Rogers Stakes at Hollywood Park. In that one-mile grass race, the son of Hennessey was squeezed at the start but rallied four wide to get up for the place money. Previously, he was victorious in the $110,000 La Puente Stakes at Santa Anita Park.
Leading rider Rene Douglas, who won the last two renewals of the Arlington Classic, has the mount aboard Toasted, who breaks from the rail in the eight-horse field. Last year, Douglas was astride Lismore Knight while in 2002 he scored with Mr. Mellon.
Street Theatre will provide the most familiar competition to Toasted, having also come out of the Will Rogers where he finished third, only a length back of Toasted. The Eoin Harty-trained son of Theatrical
has made but three lifetime starts but he broke his maiden on turf at Santa Anita in
Cool Conductor also exits a graded stakes in his start. The son of Stravinsky ran third in the grade III Jefferson Cup at Churchill Downs on June 12. In that nine-furlong grass event, the Bill Mott trainee was bumped at the start, made the pace for more than three-quarters of a mile before giving way in the final furlong.
The field, in post position order with weights and jockeys:
1. Toasted, 121 pounds, Rene R. Douglas
2. Old Deuteronomy, 119, Eusebio Razo Jr.
3. Street Theatre, 119, Carlos H. Marquez Jr.
4. Cool Conductor, 119, Cornelio H. Velasquez
5. Exploited Storm, 119, Frank Lovato, Jr.
6. Caimon, 119, Larry J. Sterling, Jr.
7. Up Anchor, 119, Christopher A. Emigh
8. Count On the Tuna, 119, Jesse M. Campbell