(Gulfstream Park notes)
The 2007 Breeders’ Cup Mile (gr. IT) winner and 2008 runner-up Kip Deville worked out Jan. 9 at Gulfstream Park for his IEAH Stables partners and trainer Rick Dutrow Jr. in preparation for his 2009 seasonal debut in the $300,000 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (gr. IT) Feb. 1.
“‘Kip’ was on his game this morning,” said Dutrow after the six-furlong breeze on the main track in 1:15 4/5 under regular jockey Cornelio Velasquez. The 6-year-old gray son of Kipling has worked twice since returning from a ninth-place finish in the Hong Kong Mile (HK-I) on Dec. 14.
“He didn’t have any kind of a problem coming back (from Hong Kong),” said Dutrow. “He came back in good shape and we gave him a strong breeze at Aqueduct and he came back today the same way. He hasn’t lost any of his weight from the trip. We’re very happy with him right now.”
The poor performance by Kip Deville in the Far East was in marked contrast to the success Dutrow had earlier last year in Dubai when IEAH’s Benny the Bull won the Dubai Golden Shaheen (UAE-I) and Four Roses Thoroughbreds’ Diamond Stripes won the Godolphin Mile (UAE-II). Dutrow had a simple answer for what he learned about finding success during and after long trips to international races.
“We have to stay the heck out of Hong Kong and spend more time in Dubai,” he said. “Kip didn’t like going the opposite way (right-hand turn) over there. We trained him going that way and it seemed like he was getting it, but in the race he just got in there and lost all interest.”
Back home on a left-handed course, Kip Deville is nearly cranked up for the top turf event of the South Florida season at the start of next month with Dutrow especially keen this year with the distance of the race shortening to 1 1/8 miles from 1 3/8 miles.
“We certainly have to look at that race,” said Dutrow. “I would say with the way he’s training right now, that would most likely be the way we would go, and if he runs big, we could go over to Dubai for the mile race (Dubai Duty Free at 1 1/8 miles) or go to Keeneland with him if we decide not to go over there.”
Dutrow will be busy over a nine-day span from Jan. 24 through Feb. 1, starting with the Sunshine Millions when he plans to send Zayat Stables’ Zee Zee in the $500,000 Filly and Mare Turf and Gilbert Campbell’s This Ones for Phil in the $250,000 Dash for 3-year-old sprinters.
The Eclipse Awards dinner will be presented Jan. 26 in Miami where Dutrow-trained Big Brown, last year’s Kentucky Derby (gr. I) and Florida Derby (gr. I) winner, is expected to pick up a trophy as 3-year-old champion; and Benny the Bull is among three finalists for champion sprinter.
Dutrow also said IEAH’s 4-year-old Acai, a nominee to the $1 million Classic, had been retired after suffering an injury in an allowance race at Aqueduct last month.
Hello Broadway Posts ‘Bullet’ Workout at Gulfstream
Elizabeth Valando’s leading 3-year-old prospect Hello Broadway breezed Jan. 9 at Gulfstream Park for trainer Barclay Tagg as the Nashua Stakes (gr. II) runner-up continues to progress toward his season debut in the $150,000 Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) at seven furlongs Jan. 30.
“He went right around the time I wanted from him today,” said Tagg after clockers registered a five-furlong ‘bullet’ drill in 1:00. “All the people I’ve asked who had watches out had about the same time. It was a pretty good work.”
Tagg hopes to have Hello Broadway register two more five-furlong works before Hutcheson. The plan from there would be to make the one-mile $250,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) Feb. 28 and the $750,000 Florida Derby (gr. I) at 1 1/8 miles Mar. 28.
“I can’t ramp him up too much,” said Tagg of Hello Broadway’s looming schedule. “He’s had a couple easy half-mile workouts. I think I can get two more five-furlong works before the next race. The ‘Hutch’ is a sprint, so I can let that race do some of the work for me. He’s a natural distance horse and there’s a grind coming up. It’s six major races in less than six months.”
The colt’s full brother, Nobiz Like Shobiz, won the 2007 Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream before taking the Wood Memorial (gr. I) at Aqueduct. He finished third in the Fountain of Youth between those wins and eventually finished 10th in the Kentucky Derby in the worst finish of his career. Tagg, with the help of the stakes schedule here this winter, has tweaked the outline for Hello Broadway.
“I never fully stopped on him. I just went awhile without giving him a breeze,” he said. “The schedule is nicer this year. The only drawback would be having to start in a sprint, but at least it lets us stretch him out leading up to the spring.”