Easy Drill for St Averil; Bound for San Felipe
Updated: Saturday, February 14, 2004 4:39 PM
Posted: Saturday, February 14, 2004 4:39 PM
Santa Catalina Stakes winner St Averil worked five furlongs in an easy 1:02 over Santa Anita's fast main track Sunday morning, after which trainer Rafael Becerra confirmed that the son of Saint Ballado's next start would be the March 13 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II).
"He's going to start one month from today," Becerra said. "That's why I gave him a nice, easy work. We still have four weeks to get him ready. The important thing today is that he finished strong. He went the last quarter in :23 and one and galloped out strong. It was exactly what I was looking for today and as the race gets closer we'll turn it up a bit on him."
Stan Fulton's St Averil stamped himself as a leading early candidate for the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) with his 1 ½-length Santa Catalina (gr. II) score. The lightly raced colt also finished second in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I) to the highly regarded Lion Heart in only his second career start. From three trips to post, St Averil owns two wins and a second for earnings of $188,000.
"I'm very happy with where he is right now. The main thing is to take it one day at a time and little by little. Hopefully, knock wood, we'll get him there in good shape."
Also working Saturday was Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) runner-up Minister Eric, who logged six furlongs in 1:14 4/5 for trainer Richard Mandella.
FREE! E-Newsletters from The Blood-Horse!...
Follow the top stories of major racing events, racing previews and results with FREE e-newsletters from bloodhorse.com. As news develops, we'll deliver updates to your inbox. Follow important events moment by moment, step by step!