Southern Image Sizzles in Final Big 'Cap Drill

(from Santa Anita notess)
Southern Image worked five furlongs Sunday on Santa Anita's fast main track in :58 3/5 in his final major prep for Saturday's $1 million Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I). Afterward, trainer Mike Machowsky pronounced the winner of the Malibu Stakes (gr. I) and the Sunshine Millions Classic ready to go.

"I had :58 1/5," Machowsky said. "I don't know what the official clockers had. It was pretty much what I wanted. I figured he'd work quick, but he always does. He galloped out in 1:11 3/5 but it was all well within himself."

In other Big 'Cap developments, trainer Marcelo Polanco plans to enter the filly Island Fashion in the Big 'Cap and then decide whether she'll become the first filly to run in the 1 ΒΌ-mile race since Serena's Song in 1996. "I thought I'd get a little less weight than what I got (115 pounds) but I'll think about it. We'll probably enter and take a look."

San Fernando Breeders' Cup Stakes runner-up Toccet worked four furlongs Sunday in :47 3/5. "He's doing as fine as he did when he came here," trainer John Scanlan said. "He's had no luck this year and neither have I so we're hooked up together. We're looking to break the ice somewhere along the line."

Paddy Gallagher was waiting to speak with the owners of Domestic Dispute before deciding to run in the Big 'Cap or pass in favor of the Dubai World Cup on March 27.

The post position draw will be held at Clockers' Corner on Wednesday. Breakfast will be served at 10 a.m., with the draw at 10:30 a.m.

Probable for the Santa Anita Handicap: Buddy Gil, Gary Stevens, 117; Island Fashion, Kent Desormeaux, 115; Olmodavor, no rider, 119; Pleasantly Perfect, Alex Solis, 123; Royal Place, Jose Valdivia Jr., 111; Saint Buddy, Tyler Baze, 111; Southern Image, Victor Espinoza, 118; Star Cross, Corey Nakatani, 114; and Toccet, Emile Ramsammy, 113.

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