Good Journey a Solid Fit in Saturday's Citation

(Edited from track reports)
Good Journey, whose four-race victory began with last year's Citation Handicap and ended last month when narrowly beaten in the Breeders' Cup Mile (gr. IT), will be a solid favorite Saturday to repeat in Hollywood Park's $500,000 Citation (gr. IIT) at 1 1/16 miles on turf.

The Citation is joined on Saturday's card by the $200,000 Generous Stakes (gr. III) for 2-year-olds at one mile.

Good Journey, a 6-year-old son of noted grass sire Nureyev, will face nine opponents including arch-rival Decarchy when attempting to match trainer Charlie Whittingham's Forlitano, the only repeat winner of the Citation in 1988.

Wally Dollase, who trains Good Journey for Flaxman Holding Ltd., is in position to join the legendary Whittingham as a four-time winner of the stakes race named for racing's first millionaire by virtue of victory in the 1951 Hollywood Gold Cup (gr. I). Hall of Fame jockey Pat Day will fly here from Kentucky to ride the field's 123-pound high weight.

Dollase thinks a repeat victory by Good Journey in the $500,000 Citation Handicap on Saturday should put the 6-year-old horse in the thick of contention for an Eclipse Award as male turf horse.

"If Good Journey wins Saturday, I think it should be between us and With Anticipation," said Dollase, downplaying European one-time starters in North America.

With Anticipation, a 7-year-old gelding, won three Grade I stakes at distances from 1 3/8 to 1 l/2 miles on turf over three different courses before finishing second to High Chaparral in the Breeders' Cup Turf.

Decarchy will renew his rivalry with Good Journey in the Citation. The 5-year-old bay, trained by national earnings leader Bobby Frankel, lost by one-half length to Good Journey in the 2001 Citation after defeating the latter by 1 1/2 lengths in an allowance event at Santa Anita. Decarchy, whose 117-pound impost was two more than that of Good Journey one year ago, will get the benefit of a five-pound swing on Saturday.

Good Journey was leading into the stretch of the 2002 Breeders' Cup Mile at Arlington Park before grudgingly giving way to longshot winner Domedriver and runner-up Rock Of Gibraltar, Europe's Horse of the Year. Three-quarters of a length separated Good Journey from a fifth consecutive win and Breeders' Cup acclaim. He enters his second Citation with earnings of $1,353,004 from a 6-4-3 record in 14 lifetime starts.

"Rock of Gibraltar is supposed to be the best horse in Europe, and he beat us by a nose (for second) in the Breeders' Cup Mile," said Dollase.

Dollase said he would not mind seeing a light shower between now and post time although he does not seek the bog-like conditions of last year that followed a rainstorm that afternoon.

"I would like to see a little cut in the ground," said Dollase after walking the firm course.

Dollase said that Good Journey's career is nearing an end. "I'm trying to sell him as a stallion," said Dollase. A co-owner, he has had a lukewarm response so far in North America.

"If he is sold to a Southern Hemisphere farm, I could run him once more in Dubai," he said.

Decarchy could give Frankel a considerable lift in his quest to break the earnings record for a trainer of $17.8 million set by D. Wayne Lukas in 1988. Frankel began the week at $16.6 million, but had opportunities throughout the country over the weekend including a pair of entrants in both the $500,000 Matriarch and $500,000 Hollywood Derby at Hollywood Park on Sunday. Relatively lightly raced at 5, Decarchy has won six of 10 starts for earnings of $489,660.

Saturday's Citation field includes White Heart, winner of the Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap (gr. IT) at Hollywood Park in 2000; Capsized, impressive winner of the $100,000 Steinlen at Arlington Park in his last start on Oct. 26, and Kimberlite Pipe, who took the R. F. Carey Memorial Handicap (gr. III) at Hawthorne Park on Nov. 2.

$500,000 Citation Handicap (gr. IIT), 3 & up, 1 1/6 mile on turf
PP, Horse, Jockey, Wgt.
1. Investor's Dream, Alex Solis, 114
2. Nicobar, Laffit Pincay Jr., 116
3. Decarchy, Kent Desormeaux, 120
4. Night Patrol, Jose Valdivia Jr., 117
5. Good Journey, Pat Day, 123
6. Kachamandi, Goncalino Almeida, 115
7. Kimberlite Pipe, Tyler Baze, 11
8. White Heart, Victor Espinoza, 115
9. Seinne, Corey Nakatani, 114
10. Capsized, Mike Smith, 115