A field of 12 has been drawn to face the starter Saturday in the 1 1/8-mile Fred W. Hooper Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Race Course. Headed by co-highweights A Huevo and Super Frolic, the race is the 12th on the "Grand Slam II" card featuring four stakes and $600,000 in purses.
Mark Hopkins' 8-year-old gelding A Huevo will carry 117 pounds and jockey Ramon Dominguez and break from the 10-hole. The 19 1/2-length victor in the West Virginia Breeders' Classic Oct. 9 at Charles Town ran an empty sixth in the Frank J. DeFrancis Memorial Handicap (gr. I) at Pimlico in his last start Nov. 12, but seems to be in fine form after a strong (5f, fast, 1:07.00, B) work last Thursday.
Trained by Michael Dickinson, the son of Cool Joe was bred in West Virginia by D Lopez. He set a track record of 1:50.10 in the slop at Charles Town in the 1999 running of the West Virginia Breeders' Classic and should be one to fear.
That foe will be tested by Stride Rite Racing Stable's early-running Super Frolic. Bred in Kentucky by Cherokee Farms, the 4-year-old chestnut son of Pine Bluff
was a winner last time out over the Calder track in the Mel's Hope Stakes Nov. 28.
Super Frolic will be looking for his first graded stakes win under rider "Jersey" Joe Bravo. A fine work (5f, fast, 59.80, H) at Calder Dec. 9 should make trainer Milt Wolfson confident in his colt's chances. Bravo and Super Frolic will leave from the ninth spot from the rail.
Experienced graded stakes winner Twilight Road, by Cahill Road, a victor in the Miami Mile Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. III) at Calder Sept. 11, will look to add to his resume with Phil Teator aboard.
The 7-year-old gelding has 46 starts under his girth and has hit the board in 24 of them--11 times a winner. He couldn't keep the pace against some of his Hooper rivals last time out in the Spend a Buck Handicap (gr. III) at Calder, but he also posted a sharp work (5f, fast, 59.80, H) over the track and appears ready to contend from the post 8.
Bred in Kentucky by Mira Ball and owned by Domamire Farm, Twilight Road is trained by David Fawkes and boasts career earnings of $647,557.
Pies Prospect (Crafty Prospector
) with Edgar Prado up; Bob's Proud Moment (Proud and True) with Jerry Baily in the irons; and Seattle Slew's son Gold Dollar are other entries of note.Fred W. Hooper Handicap, Grade III, 3-year-olds and upward, 1 1/8 miles, $100,000, Saturday, Dec. 11., Appx. Post Time 5:19 PM EDT.
PP--Horse, age, sex, weight, jockey
1--Dusty's Birthday, 5, H, 112, Cecilio Penalba
2--Scooter Roach, 5, G, 113, Cornelio Velasquez
3--Bob's Proud Moment, 3, C, 112 Jerry Bailey
4--Pies Prospect, 3, C, 113, Edgar Prado
5--The Judge Sez Who, 5, H, Jose Santos
6--Gold Dollar, 5, H, 113, Jose Lopez
7--Hear No Evil, 4, 112, Eddie Castro
8--Twilight Road, 7, G, 115, Phil Teato
9--Super Frolic, 4, C, 117, Joe Bravo
10--A Huevo, 8, G, 117, Ramon Dominguez
11--Caiman, 3, C, Eduardo Nunez
12--Uncivil, 3, C, 111, Jorge Chavez