Basmati is one of four rivals shooting for the moon in Sunday’s San
Antonio Stakes. The chestnut son of Borrego owned by Zillah Reddam and
trained by Doug O’Neill takes on 1-5 morning line favorite Game On Dude
in the Grade II race, a steppingstone to the Grade I, $750,000 Santa
Anita Handicap on March 2.
Basmati finished ninth and last in the Grade I Malibu at seven
furlongs last out, on Dec. 26, but Doug’s brother, Dennis, feels it’s
worth rolling the dice against Game On Dude.
“He came out of the Malibu really good and we knew it was going
to be a short field (in the San Antonio),” Dennis said. “Figuring Game
On Dude wasn’t totally cranked and looking ahead towards the Santa Anita
Handicap, that’s what went into the thinking in running.
“The horse is training really, really well and I would think
he’ll be close up. If he can run second or third, that would be huge.”
The San Antonio field: Clubhouse Ride, Aaron Gryder, 9-2; Game On
Dude, Mike Smith, 1-5; Make Music for Me, Martin Garcia, 10-1; Chosen
Miracle, Joe Talamo, 4-1; and Basmati, Mario Gutierrez, 8-1.