Appealing Tale (right) finished second to Catch a Flight in the San Diego Handicap.

Appealing Tale (right) finished second to Catch a Flight in the San Diego Handicap.

Benoit Photo

Appealing Tale Dials Back for Pat O'Brien

Runner-up in last two graded races, Tale of the Cat gelding will try sprinting again.

Coming off arguably the best performance of his career, when he was just a head behind Catch a Flight in the San Diego Handicap (gr. II), Gary and Cecil Barber's Appealing Tale will dial back to seven furlongs in the $250,000 Pat O'Brien Stakes (gr. II) Aug. 22 at Del Mar instead of trying Catch a Flight again in the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic (gr. I).

Trained by Peter Miller, Appealing Tale led into the stretch of the 1 1/16-mile San Diego, but was caught in the final strides by Catch a Flight to just miss out on his first graded score. The Tale of the Cat  gelding also finished well head of Pacific Classic runners Bayern  and Hoppertunity.

BALAN: Catch a Flight Finds Just Enough in San Diego

Although the O'Brien field is short at only five horses, it features graded winners Kobe's Back  and Wild Dude, who punched his ticket to the Breeders' Cup Sprint (gr. I) with an impressive victory in the Bing Crosby Stakes (gr. I) at Del Mar last time out July 26.

BALAN: Wild Dude Stuns Masochistic in Bing Crosby

In the six-furlong Bing Crosby, Wild Dude caught heavily favored Masochistic late to win by 1 1/4 lengths. Masochistic defeated both Appealing Tale and Wild Dude, by 3 1/4 and 6 1/4 lengths, respectively, the last time they went seven furlongs in the Triple Bend Stakes (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park June 27.

Graded stakes-placed Indexical and allowance/optional claiming winner Turnover complete the field.

The O'Brien is a "Win and You're In" event for the Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (gr. I).

Entries: Pat O'Brien S. (G2)

Del Mar, Saturday, August 22, 2015, Race 4

  • Grade II
  • 7f
  • Dirt
  • $250,000
  • 3 yo's & up
  • 3:42 PM (local)
11Turnover (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateMartin Garcia119Bob Baffert-
22Appealing Tale (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateJoseph Talamo119Peter Miller-
33Wild Dude (FL)Flavien Prat123Jerry Hollendorfer-
44Indexical (KY)Mario Gutierrez119Ben D. A. Cecil-
55Kobe's Back (KY)Gary L. Stevens119Peter Eurton-