Southwestern Heat is entered today in an extremely competitive 6f allowance n1y race at Philly Park. His stablemate Suave Jazz looks the top pick, dropping down from graded stakes company in his last two outings, including finishing just a neck behind Starforaday in the G3 Maryland Sprint Handicap on Preakness day, followed with a sixth place finish in the G2 True North Handicap over 6 lengths behind Benny the Bull. Ramon Preciado sends Cherokee Country off a 9-month layoff—he defeated Southwestern Heat on three occasions last year. [UPDATE: Cherokee Country is an early scratch, as is Secret Time]
8-year-old Banjo Picker hasn’t been successful in three runs back since a layoff in late January, but you have to respect a home track horse that’s earned over half a million dollars and has finished in the money nearly 66% lifetime. I am dismissing claimer Secret Time—even Jayne Vaders’ legendary medicinal aids can’t help him here—but Power By Leigh may sneak in for a piece, coming in off a run on PID’s Tapeta last out. Southwestern Heat should love the return to dirt, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed for him.
Xtra Heat’s 2-year-old filly Elusive Heat—her first daughter—has been working at Saratoga, posting a relative pedestrian 52.07 workout for 4f (28/30) on Sunday. However, she previously posted a bullet 3f work (36.23) on July 5, and a solid 48.93 (7/21) on July 12, so hopefully we’ll see her sometime during the meet. She was a $750,000 purchase by Martin Schwartz at the February 2008 Fasig-Tipton 2-year-olds in training sale at Calder. Considering how much success Schwartz has enjoyed with his fillies (Gorella, Asi Siempre, Lady of Venice), here’s hoping Elusive Heat lives up to her mamma.
Anyone else notice that in Bloodhorse’s report on Big Brown’s work yesterday there was nary of mention of Rick Dutrow as IEAH’s Michael Iavarone did all the commenting on the work? Talk about becoming a persona non grata! How much on the outs is Dutrow at this point? Inquiring minds want to know.
Finally, on Thursday at Louisiana Downs, there’s a 3-year-old colt named Plantation Jig making his first start in race 5. What is interesting about him is not his poor workout record, but the fact that his sire Speedy Valdez and his dam Plantation Star share the same sire, Lone Star Bar. Does that sound healthy? I don’t know about horses, but in some parts, as they say, that just ain’t right.
[UPDATE: Plantation Jig survived his first race, but at 77-1 finished dead last in an 11-horse field. The winner World Wide Web went off at nearly 61-1, paying $123.40, $36.00, and $15.80. Only in Louisiana...]