Dortmund works seven furlongs in 1:25 4/5 in preparation for his 2017 debut

Dortmund works seven furlongs in 1:25 4/5 in preparation for his 2017 debut

Gary Tasich

Dortmund Returns in Kilroe Mile

New trainer, new surface for grade 1 winner.

A new trainer led to a new surface for Kaleem Shah's Dortmund .

Stabled with Art Sherman at Los Alamitos Race Course after Shah and Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert parted ways at the end of 2016, the 5-year-old will take his first steps onto the Santa Anita Park lawn March 11 in the $400,000 Frank E. Kilroe Mile (G1T).

"I think this will be an easier race for him than running seven-eighths in the (grade 1) Triple Bend (on the same day)," Sherman said. "Seven-eighths of a mile is a very demanding type of race and he hasn't run in almost six months. Breeding-wise, I always wondered why they never tried the grass with him."

Dortmund's sire Big Brown  won his debut on turf at Saratoga Race Course before shifting to dirt for his Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) and Preakness Stakes (G1) wins, and 11 of the stallion's 17 stakes winners have won stakes on the grass. Dortmund's dam, the Tale of the Cat  mare Our Josephina, finished fifth in her only turf try, but produced a two-time turf winner from five foals to race.

The towering Dortmund inhabits the double-wide stall left vacant by recently retired two-time Horse of the Year California Chrome , and while he doesn't boast quite the résumé of that dual classic winner, he earned respect of his own during his sophomore season with a six-race win streak, capped by his 2015 Santa Anita Derby (G1) score. His momentum was spoiled by the Kentucky Derby win of eventual Triple Crown winner American Pharoah , behind whom Dortmund ran third in the Derby and fourth in the Preakness. He ended that year with wins in the Big Bear Stakes and Native Diver Stakes (G3), both at Santa Anita.

BALAN: Dortmund Unrelenting in Santa Anita Derby

Dortmund's 2016 slate saw him hit the board in four stakes, although he was troubled by quarter cracks and ran a limited campaign in the second half of the year. The Kilroe will be his first start for Sherman and his first since running fourth in the Nov. 4 Las Vegas Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (G1). Victor Espinoza has the mount from post 4 and Dortmund will carry 120 pounds.

A familiar rival awaits—Golden Pegasus Racing and Earle Mack's Bolo. The 5-year-old son of Temple City  also has prior dirt form, with a third in the 2015 Santa Anita Derby and San Felipe Stakes (G2), both won by Dortmund. Trainer Carla Gaines made the successful shift to turf after a 12th-place run in the Kentucky Derby, and Bolo has picked up two high-level wins in the Arcadia Stakes (G2T) both last year and this season.

BALAN: Bolo Repeats in Arcadia Stakes

Bolo will carry 122 pounds, and shares that assignment with the three that came behind him in the Arcadia. What a View, winner of the Kilroe Mile in 2016, finished second by a head. Then came Mathis Brothers Mile (G2T) winner Conquest Enforcer, followed by 2015 Kilroe victor Ring Weekend.

Completing the field are Bal a Bali , who has not raced since a sixth in The Gold Cup at Santa Anita (G1) in June, and grade 2 winner Flamboyant, who cuts back in distance off a third in the 1 1/4-mile San Marcos Stakes (G2T) Feb. 4.

Entries: Frank E. Kilroe Mile S. (G1T)

Santa Anita Park, Saturday, March 11, 2017, Race 9

  • Grade IT
  • 1m
  • Turf
  • $400,000
  • 4 yo's & up
  • 4:11 PM (local)
11Bal a Bali (BRZ)Javier Castellano120Richard E. Mandella8/1
22Flamboyant (FR)Brice Blanc120Patrick Gallagher12/1
33Bolo (KY)Mike E. Smith122Carla Gaines3/1
44Dortmund (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateVictor Espinoza120Art Sherman4/1
55Ring Weekend (KY)Keeneland Sales GraduateRafael Bejarano122H. Graham Motion4/1
66Conquest Enforcer (ON)Keeneland Sales GraduateFlavien Prat122Philip D'Amato7/2
77What a View (CA)Tyler Baze122Kenneth D. Black7/2