Haskin's derby Watch--Week 7 (Cont.)

19 -- Perfect Drift/Murray Johnson; Dynaformer-Nice Gal, by Naskra

Saw a lot of things to like in his nose defeat to Request for Parole. Hard to separate the two, but this colt looks to have more stamina and a bit more room for improvement. He also had a worse trip in the Battaglia, and showed a good burst of speed, maneuverability, and a nice way of going. Needs to step it up a notch or two in the Spiral Stakes.

20 -- Request for Parole/ Steve Margolis; Judge T C-Madison's Quest, by Deputy Minister

Hard to fault him, as he's always there at the finish and runs his heart out every time. You had to like the way he and Perfect Drift drew off to finish nearly 14 lengths ahead of the third horse. If anyone thinks they're going to waltz into Turfway for the Spiral and have their way with the locals, they may be in for a rude awakening.

21 -- Easy Grades/Ted West; Honor Grades-Itsoeasy, by Easy Goer

Encouraging to see this gelding run such a bang-up race in the San Rafael with no stakes experience and coming off a maiden and optional claiming race on the grass. The question is, did he merely finish second because someone had to? Pelirrojo and Werblin had their problems, and the runner-up spot was ripe for the picking. But he does have the pedigree and looks to be an improving horse, so we'll keep an eye on him, especially since he did come home his last quarter in :24 2/5.


22 -- Publication/Terry Knight; Petionville-Cat News, by Storm Cat

Curious to see which Publication shows up in the Louisiana Derby -- the stalking winner of the Arlington Futurity, the come-from-the-clouds closer in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile, or the horse who showed nothing in the Hollywood Futurity. Don't like the two-race scenario for the Derby, but wouldn't be surprised at all to see him run a huge race first crack out.

23 -- Azillion/Bob Hess; Alzao-Olivia, by Ela-Mana-Mou

Hess is realistic about this colt, and was hoping for a breakout race against Sunday Break. He wasn't thrilled about the way he kept making spotty runs at the leader, but he's still on the improve, and it would probably benefit him to take him farther back off the pace and just try for the one run.

24 -- Bob's Image/ Dallas Stewart; Halo's Image-Gray Flannel, by Darn That Alarm

Now that his opponents know he is a horse you don't want to tangle with on the lead, he might have it all to himself in the Louisiana Derby; at least long enough for him to be even harder to catch than he was in the Risen Star. Don't know how far his speed will carry him, but no doubt will be a force to reckon with next Sunday.

25 -- Easyfromthegitgo/Steve Asmussen; Dehere-Montera, by Easy Goer

You have to give him another chance in the Lousiana Derby. May be closer to the pace this time. Trying to lay back again and outclose Repent is not the best strategy. He was moving well enough in the final furlong of the Risen Star to suggest he's capable of rebounding on Sunday.

26 -- Changeintheweather/Dave Bell; Gone West-Meteor Colony, by Pleasant Colony

Could very well show up in Gulfstream allowance race this Saturday. If he's ridden to his best style this time, he should turn in a big effort. We still feel this is a talented colt who is going to get better the farther he goes.

27 -- Cappuchino/Jerry Hollendorfer; Capote-Tara Roma, by Lyphard

If Danthebluegrassman stays in Southern Cal, he should have the El Camino Real Derby at his mercy. Should be very effective up to 1 1/8 miles. After that there's a question mark. He's fast and consistent, and has excellent tactical speed to adapt to any circumstances.

28 -- Straight Gin/Nick Zito; Go for Gin-Valeta, by Procida

Now that he's scored back-to-back victories, you have to think he's a colt on the improve. Still has a way to go to prove he belongs with the best horses, but he's on the right path. Showed a lot of determination and professionalism after being headed at the quarter pole. Spiral Stakes might fit his schedule.

29 -- Windward Passage/Steve Asmussen; Captain Bodgit-Storm Runner, by Miswaki

Of all the horses in the spilt Southwest Stakes, he was the only one who looked like he wanted to keep going, despite finishing third in the slower division. The track was a mess, and he dropped back after being stuck in behind horses. When he found clear sailing, he picked it up and was moving well in the final furlong. This race should set him up nicely for the Rebel Stakes.

30 -- Charioteer/Todd Pletcher; Silver Deputy-New Wave, by Dynaformer

Breezed 5 furlongs in 1:02 1/5 Tuesday. Will run in the Louisiana Derby. Pletcher says he doesn't have to win, going up against Repent and Co., but they need a pair of two-turn races in him and it's time to see just what they have.

KNOCKING ON THE DOOR: Look for much-improved effort from FRENCH ASSAULT in Louisiana Derby if taken back and allowed to make one run. CRITTENDEN and FORTY NINE DEEDS were coming fast at the end of Fair Grounds allowance race Monday. Winner ONE TUFF FOX held on after opening big lead; had previously finished 6 1/2 lengths behind D'Coach in Big A allowance race. The hot horse in Maryland right now looks to be MAGIC WEISNER, winner of the Deputed Testamony Stakes for his third straight stakes victory. In the first division of the Southwest Stakes, run in the mud, PRIVATE EMBLEM turned in a professional effort to win by three-quarters of a length. PALOMA PARILLA scored in the much slower second division for his second straight win. MARASCA ran a solid race to finish second to Straight Gin in a Gulfstream allowance race. BLUEFORMER broke his maiden smartly at Gulfstream and looks to have a bright future. CASHEL CASTLE got snowed out of 3-year-old debut at Sportsman's Park. Two exciting colts, MAYAKOVSKY and MEDAGLIA D'ORO, likely headed for Gotham. WARNERS continues to work sharply; one work away from 3-year-old debut.

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