Shermanesque Looks To Make It 'Special' For Reinstedler

Edited press release
Trainer Tony Reinstedler, who has worked with such champions as Personal Ensign, Easy Goer, Prairie Bayou, and Saint Liam, clearly knows a good horse when he sees one. He is hoping to see one Aug. 17 when Willmott Stable's Shermanesque runs in the $200,000 Saratoga Special Breeders' Cup (gr. II)at Saratoga Race Course, where he will face six 2-year-old rivals at 6 1/2 furlongs.

Shermanesque has shown a lot of potential for owner Paul Willmott and Reinstedler. After winning his debut against a 12-horse field at Churchill Downs, Shermanesque was second to Circular Quay in the grade II Bashford Manor Stakes, also at Churchill Downs.

"I've been around good horses," Reinstedler said. "I can tell you what a good horse looks like. He's got a lot of natural ability. He's got a lot of tools you would see in a good horse."

One of those tools is Shermanesque's pedigree. His sire is Fusaichi Pegasus , winner of the 2000 Kentucky Derby (gr. I). Shermanesque is out of the stakes-winning mare T.V. Countess, who produced Countess Diana, the 1997 2-year-old champion filly who won Saratoga's grade I Spinaway and grade II Schuylerville, as well as the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I).

Despite Shermanesque's second-place finish in the Bashford Manor, Reinstedler was impressed with how his colt handled the race.

"The Bashford Manor was such a strong race," Reinstedler said. "It was also a typical 2-year-old race. It was wild and furious for the first part. He had to run hard throughout the race. Todd's horse had the perfect trip, and we were second best."

As much as Reinstedler doesn't want to look too far ahead, he plans to map out a fall campaign for Shermanesque leading up to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) at Churchill Downs Nov. 4.

"The challenge is going to be finding a last prep race before the Breeders' Cup," Reinstedler said. "Most of the 2-year-old races we are looking at are on polytracks like Woodbine and Turfway Park. I'm not saying we wouldn't come back to New York, but I'd like to keep him close to his home base at Churchill Downs."

Jockey Javier Castellano replaces Brice Blanc on Shermanesque for the Saratoga Special.

Trainer Jamie Sanders made a surprising last-minute decision, entering Teuflesberg along with Fast N Ready in the race for owner Gary Logsdon, though it's uncertain if both horses will run.

Teuflesberg nearly pulled off an upset win in his first race, the grade II Sanford Stakes at Saratoga July 27. After leading throughout, however, he was caught by Scat Daddy within the last three lengths of the stretch. Sanders is also considering the grade 1, $250,000 Hopeful Stakes Sept. 4 as the next start for Teuflesberg.

Fast N Ready won his first race in three starts for a $75,000 maiden claiming price earlier this month at Saratoga.

Gold Square Stable's Chace City is the lone stakes winner in the Saratoga Special field, with a victory in the Victoria at Woodbine. Chace City suffered his first loss in the Bashford Manor after jumping in the air within the first few strides from the starting gate.

"He was in the number one post, and he over-rated when the number two horse (Shermanesque) came in on him," said assistant trainer Scott Blasi, who is running the barn for Steve Asmussen. "I think he found himself in a position where he didn't know where he was at. I don't think it was his fault. He's a two-year-old, and it was a new experience for him being in that position."

Blasi is hoping Chace City, who had put in three solid workouts off that race, can rebound with Shaun Bridgmohan aboard.

"Anytime you bring a horse into a stakes race at Saratoga, that horse better be ready," Blasi said. "He has done everything right since being here. He's a good horse, and he has to be a good horse to win this."

Of the 24 colts and geldings on the Saratoga Special nomination list, seven colts were nominated by Pletcher. Stepping up for Pletcher is King of the Roxy, who was purchased by Team Valor Stables after he graduated from the maiden ranks in his second start at Hollywood Park July 2.

"It's an ambitious spot, but he's training well," Pletcher said. "He runs in blinkers, and we haven't been working him in blinkers. Apparently, that makes a big difference. Basically, an allowance race could come up tougher than a stakes. We'll give it a shot and see how he does."

The Saratoga Special Breeders' Cup:
Post position -- horse, trainer, jockey, weight
1 -- Shermanesque, Tony Reinstedler, Javier Castellano, 118
2 -- Actin Good, Robert Dibona, Cornelio Velasquez, 118
3 -- Cash Rich, Anthony Dutrow, Jeremy Rose, 118
4 -- Teuflesberg, Jamie Sanders, Rafael Bejarano, 118
5 -- Fast N Ready, Jamie Sanders, Julien Leparoux, 118
6 -- Chace City, Scott Blasi, Edgar Prado, 122
7 -- King of the Roxy, Todd Pletcher, John Velazquez, 118