Siphonizer can breathe normally again, which is bad news for his rivals in the $150,000 Lazaro Barrera Memorial Stakes (gr. II) for 3-year-olds at Hollywood Park on Saturday. Siphonizer showed ample ability winning the Del Mar Futurity (gr. II) at Saturday's seven-furlong distance in September but after a pair of disappointing efforts in the Norfolk Stakes (gr. II) and Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), trainer Richard Mandella discovered the breathing problem."He was getting his soft palate stuck and was choking," said Mandella. "He underwent a type of throat surgery called a myectomy by (veterinarian) Rick Arthur, and we gave him a little rest."Siphonizer returned on April 24 with an impressive six-length victory in a six-furlong allowance race at Churchill Downs. "I thought the race was pretty good," said Mandella of the B. Wayne Hughes-owned son of Siphon. "I think it's too early to say that seven furlongs is his best distance. I think he can get two turns."Siphonizer has become Mandella's biggest hope in the 3-year-old division. Standout colts Action This Day and Minister Eric and champion filly Halfbridled have all been turned out.
A field of at least seven is shaping up for the Barrera: Siphonizer (Alex Solis), Don'tsellmeshort (David Flores), Evolution (Victor Espinoza), Twice As Bad (Corey Nakatani), Wimplestiltskin (Jose Valdivia, Jr.) and the Doug O'Neill-trained duo of Hosco and Skipaslew.