Steeplechase Season Closes Sunday

Florida's Calder Race Course will again close the National Steeplechase Association season, with two races carded as part of Sunday's racing program. The jumpers will compete in a $25,000 allowance hurdle and the $50,000 Tropical Park Steeplechase Stakes (NSA-III).

The feature, set as the day's seventh race, attracted a field of eight including stakes winners P.C. Plod, Spring Salute, Hokan, Plumb Bob and Teb's Bend. The latter, coming off a $35,000 score at Callaway Gardens (Ga.) should rate a slight favorite for leading trainer Tom Voss. Jockey Roger
Horgan gets the call at 150 pounds. Teb's Bend has won five of nine career hurdle starts. The Maryland-bred, owned by Voss' wife Mimi, is also an accomplished flat horse (he finished fifth in the 2001 Maryland Million Turf and holds the rare distinction of winning on the flat and over hurdles at the 1997 Saratoga meeting).

An 8-year-old son of Whatever For, Teb's Bend faces a stiff challenge from recent novice stakes winner P.C. Plod. Based in Virginia with trainer Neil Morris, the son of Pleasant Tap opened his 2001 campaign with a win at Tampa Bay Downs and scored in the $75,000 U.S. Championship novice at Callaway
Gardens Nov. 3. Owned by Kinross Farm, P.C. Plod gets jockey Matt McCarron.

Landslide Farm's Spring Salute shoulders high weight of 154 pounds thanks to an impressive win in a similar race at Far Hills (N.J.) on Oct. 20. The 7-year-old races for top trainer Sanna Neilson, and also gets 2001 champion jockey Gus Brown. The field (with jockey) in post position order: P.C. Plod (McCarron), Feeling So Pretty (Michael Cooney), Ethical Actions (Robert Massey), Spring Salute (Brown), Hokan (Cyril Murphy), Plumb Bob (Toby Edwards), Teb's Bend (Roger Horgan) and Devil's Honor (David Bentley).

Calder hosted its first jump race in 2000, when Pompeyo scored in the inaugural running of the Tropical Park Steeplechase. Management expanded the steeplechase commitment to two races this year also carding a $25,000
allowance race (the day's third). Both races will be run at a distance of 2 1/4 miles.