Preachinatthebar Can Make Amends in Californian

(from Hollywood Park report)
Preachinatthebar, a disappointing eighth on a muddy track in the Lone Star Park Handicap (gr. III) in Texas most recently, will try to regain his winning ways in Saturday's $250,000 Californian (gr. II) at Hollywood Park.

The 5-year-old son of Silver Charm has won two of four 2006 starts, but was beaten 14 ΒΌ lengths in the Lone Star Park race on May 29 when compromised by the heavy going. Prior to that he posted back-to-back grade III victories in the Tokyo City Handicap at Santa Anita and the Texas Mile at Lone Star. A victory in the Californian would make Preachinatthebar a leading contender for the $750,000 Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I) on July 8.

"He ran horrible in Texas," said trainer Bob Baffert. "Sometimes they run, sometimes they don't. They aren't machines."

Preachinatthebar, who will be ridden by Victor Espinoza, has run winning races eight times in 24 career starts while earning $638,240. His biggest win came two years ago in the San Felipe Stakes (gr. II), briefing placing him among the nation's premier 3-year-olds.

The Californian, which will run as the sixth of ten races on Saturday's ten-race program at Hollywood Park, drew a field of eight.

Super Frolic, richest horse in the field with earnings of $1.1 million, won the Hawthorne Gold Cup (gr. II) last fall before finishing fourth at odds of 69-1 in the Breeders' Cup Classic Powered by Dodge (gr. I). The 6-year-old son of Pine Bluff has started twice in 2006, finishing eighth in the Donn Handicap (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park and ninth in the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I).

Spellbinder, second behind Surf Cat in the Mervyn LeRoy Handicap (gr. II) at Hollywood May 13, enters The Californian with five wins in 20 starts for earnings of $378,129.

Texas-bred Dixie Meister, third-place finisher in the Mervyn LeRoy, ran second in the New Orleans Handicap (gr. II) in January and second in the Santana Mile at Santa Anita in March. He has earned $346,210 with three wins in 19 starts.

$250,000 Californian Stakes (gr. II, Race 6, 3:50 p.m.), 3 & Up, 1 1/8 Miles
PP. Horse, Weight, Jockey
1. Yes He's a Pistol (FL), 116, Patrick A. Valenzuela
2. Dixie Meister (TX), 116, David R. Flores
3. Super Frolic (KY), 116, Jon K. Court
4. Preachinatthebar (KY), 120, Victor Espinoza
5. Melanyhasthepapers (WA), 116, Corey S. Nakatani
6. Spellbinder (KY), 120, Martin A. Pedroza
7. That's an Outrage (KY), 116, Tyler Baze
8. Ice Cole (FL), 116, David Cohen