The 2002 Experimental Free Handicap has been more an experiment in futility, as none of the Top 10 weighted horses even made it to the Kentucky Derby. But several of the heavy hitters are back in training, with the No. 9 ranked Zavata leading the comeback assault on Thursday.
The Thoroughbred Corp.'s grade I winner Johar, sidelined since suffering a hairline fracture to a shoulder in late January, is doing well at his owners' Bradbury, Calif., farm, trainer Richard Mandella reported, and isn't too far from a return to training.
Donald Dizney's homebred Apalachian Thunder defeated a promising field of 3-year-olds that included Atswhatimtalknbout and Listen Indy in Friday's $56,000 allowance feature at Santa Anita.
Bay colt, foaled Jan. 8, 2000
A.P. Indy--Ecoute, by Manila
Padua Stables' undefeated Vindication, preparing for his 3-year-old campaign, had his first workout Tuesday since winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) at Arlington Park Oct. 26, going three furlongs at Santa Anita in :36.60 under exercise rider Dana Barnes.
Preparing Kona Gold for the Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) is old hat for Bruce Headley, who is preparing the 8-year-old for his fifth run at the Sprint.
Yellow Ribbon winner Golden Apples worked four furlongs on the turf Sunday morning at Santa Anita in :50 2/5, according to her trainer, Ben Cecil.
Favored Kafwain and Bull Market, a pair of Bob Baffert-trained juveniles, battled through the stretch Saturday in the $200,000 Norfolk (gr. II) at Santa Anita, with the Thoroughbred Corporation's Kafwain scoring a nose victory over his stablemate.
Trainer A.C. Avila indicated Wednesday morning that Manhattan Express would be supplemented to Saturday's $200,000 Norfolk Stakes (gr. II) at a cost of $4,000.
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