Smarty Likely Will Arrive Fashionably Late For Date With Destiny
Updated: Saturday, May 22, 2004 4:28 PM
Posted: Friday, May 21, 2004 1:32 PM
Photo: Equi-Photo/Bill Denver
Smarty Jones, on the track Friday at Philadelphia Park, where he likely will remain until just before the Belmont Stakes.
The more trainer John Servis has thought about it the more he's leaning toward shipping Smarty Jones to Belmont Park as close to the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) as possible. It had been reported that the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Preakness (gr. I) winner would van up next Wednesday, but those plans have changed.
"Right now, I have no plans, whatsoever," Servis said. "He's doing really good here, he's happy, and as long as he's doing the way he's doing I'm gonna wait until we get closer to the race and then make a decision. I can't see myself shipping him up the day of the race, but I honestly can't say that I might not ship in the day before the race."
Servis said, as of now, he's planning on working Smarty Jones either next Friday or Saturday at Philadelphia Park, and that will be his only work between the Preakness and Belmont.
The son of Elusive Quality
had a strong gallop by himself this morning, as he prepares for his second big open-house Saturday morning, when he'll gallop before the fans at 8:30.
"He galloped a mile and-a-half this morning and he went very well," Servis said. "He was full of himself this morning. As a matter of fact, when he came out under tack, I'm watching him walk up the shed row, just checking him out to make sure everything's good, and he kind of threw his head a bit and gave a couple of squeals. I just kind of shook my head . . . he amazes me. He went around the corner, and I'm putting the bridle on the pony, and I can hear on the other side another squeal, and then 'bam,' the feed tub goes bouncing down the shed row. He nailed the feed tub. So I took him away from the pony and let him gallop by himself.
"Right now he's so full of himself, and the one thing I don't want is for him to go into a mile and-a-half race being too sharp. He'll gallop by himself today and Saturday and then I'll probably start going a little farther with him in his gallops next week."
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