Managing partner Jack Knowlton of Sackatoga Stable said Funny Cide will accept the 123 pounds assigned Friday for the $1 million Haskell Invitational (gr. I) on Aug. 3 at Monmouth Park."The weight sounds good to us," Knowlton said. "I know the last two years the top weight was 124 (Haskell winners Point Given and War Emblem). So 123 will be just fine with us." The Sackatoga partners, who all hail from Sacketts Harbor, NY, became highly visible on the Triple Crown trail, and a big part of that was their mode of transportation. The big yellow school bus will be making it way to Oceanport for the first Sunday in August, and Knowlton says he can't wait. "The Haskell looks like a great race," Knowlton said. "God willing, we'll be there. Funny Cide worked great the other day, and we're really looking forward to the race." The New York-bred gelding has won the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes and has earned just $615 shy of $2 million. In his last start, the Belmont Stakes June 7, he finished third."The horse will probably ship in on race day," Knowlton said. "It's up to Barclay (trainer Barclay Tagg), but that's what I expect him to do." Tagg has indicated Funny Cide will be on a van leaving Saratoga early (1 or 2 a.m.) on Sunday morning, Aug. 3. After traveling through the cool of the night, the horse will arrive at the Monmouth stable area around 6 a.m. A field of seven is in prospect for the Haskell, racing secretary Mike Dempsey said Saturday.
Funny Cide will likely be joined in the gate by second high weight Peace Rules (121). The others expected to participate are Sky Mesa, 118; Wild and Wicked, 118; Excessivepleasure, 117; Mobil, 117 and Kool Humor, 115. Trainer Manny Tortora said Supah Blitz, pegged at 115, would not start in the Haskell and would instead race on the grass at Calder July 26.Others listed as possibles to make the Haskell are Midway Road, 117; Scrimshaw, 117, and El Ruller, 115.