Toccet Tackles Elders in Goodwood

John Scanlan says Toccet is at his best for Saturday's $500,000 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II) at Santa Anita at 1 1/8 miles. If the trainer has any reservations as to how the well-traveled 3-year-old will fare, it's because the son of Awesome Again is making his debut against his elders.

"He's going to face older horses for the first time and if he can beat these horses, then he can go on (to the Breeders' Cup Classic)," Scanlan said. "Right about now, it shouldn't make quite as much difference as it would two months ago. Toccet's a late foal (May), so I don't expect him to be as good as he can be until he's four.

"Facing older horses for the first time definitely is a tougher task, but he's got to face them at the end of the month, so why not now?

"He walked today, he's doing super and at this point in time he's about as good as he's going to get. I'm sure he's going to get better after this race. He was feeling great today, he ate everything and everything's fine. He likes it out here."

Toccet, 7-2 on the morning line, breaks from the outside post in the field of eight with Julie Krone in the irons.

Defending Goodwood champion Pleasantly Perfect, who breaks from the two post with Alex Solis aboard, is the 5-2 early favorite. The Richard Mandella-trained 5-year-old has not been postward since a fourth-place finish in the Santa Anita Handicap (gr. I) on March 1. The son of Pleasant Colony has been working tremendously at Santa Anita for his return. He recorded bullet works of 1:23 2/5 for seven furlongs on Sept. 27 and :34 handily going three furlongs Thursday.

$500,000 Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap (gr. II), 3 & up, 1 1/8 mile
PP. Horse, Rider, Wgt., ML Odds
1. Reba's Gold, Mike Smith, 115, 4-1
2. Pleasantly Perfect, Alex Solis, 116, 5-2
3. Joey Franco, Victor Espinoza, 117, 4-1
4. Taste of Paradise, Jose Valdivia Jr., 113, 15-1
5. Star Cross, Ryan Fogelsonger, 110, 30-1
6. Grey Memo, Gary Stevens, 116, 5-1
7. Fleetstreet Dancer, Tyler Baze, 113, 8-1
8. Toccet, Julie Krone, 113, 7-2