Medaglia d'Oro to Run in Clark Handicap; Stays in Training Next Year
Updated: Thursday, November 6, 2003 11:10 AM
Posted: Tuesday, November 4, 2003 1:50 PM
Bobby Frankel, back after a nine-day honeymoon in Barbados, is regrouping his forces, and will likely run Breeders' Cup Classic (gr. I) runner-up Medaglia d'Oro in the $500,000-added Clark Handicap (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 28.
Frankel, who broke D. Wayne Lukas' record for earnings in a single year while he was away, said Medaglia d'Oro came out of the Classic in excellent shape, and likely will remain in training next year, with the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) as his first major objective.
"This morning is the first time I've seen him since the race," Frankel said. "He's still a fresh horse and I'll probably run him in the Clark. I thought he ran an excellent race in the Classic. Things might have been different had he drawn outside Congaree. He got squeezed at the start and was forced to withstand all the heat down on the rail the whole way."
As for remaining in training at five, Frankel said, "He hasn't had that many starts and should have a big year ahead of him. Mr. (Edmund) Gann is going to leave it up to me, and as of now he'll probably run next year. I think he showed he can get the mile and a quarter. He's a very good horse, and hopefully he'll show it next year. Look at Aldebaran last year. Somebody always seemed to run the race of his life to beat him. But look at the year he had this year. So, maybe next year will his (Medaglia d'Oro's) year."
Frankel said Sightseek, who finished fourth at 3-5 in the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I), bled in the race, but the others all came back in good shape. "She'd never bled before," Frankel said, "but the heat every day may have gotten to her. Whatever it was, she wasn't herself, that was obvious."
Frankel said, in retrospect, the Sprint (gr. I) was a tough spot for Aldebaran, who finished sixth as the 2-1 favorite, beaten 5 3/4 lengths. "I knew that going in," Frankel said. "Maybe at Belmont he could have gotten away with it. (Jerry) Bailey said he felt great under him and thought he ran a great race. If the race were 6 1/2 furlongs, there's a good chance he might have won it. He caught them all past the wire. That's why I didnt want to take a chance with a horse like Ghostzapper. I'm a realist, but with Aldebaran I felt I had to take a shot. I still think he should get sprinter of the year. He ran great all year, but one race was a little too short for him."
Frankel said of all his horses who ran Breeders' Cup Day, he felt the two who were bothered by the heat were Tates Creek and Peace Rules. "Both of them acted weird in the paddock," Frankel said. "Tates Creek has been retired, but Peace Rules will be back next year."
As for his day in general, Frankel said, "Hey, you live and learn in this game."
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