Dan Ward worked with the late Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel for
22 years before joining forces with another Hall of Fame trainer, Jerry
It’s pure coincidence that Hollendorfer has entered City to City
in a race named for Frankel, Sunday’s Grade II, $150,000 Robert J.
Frankel Stakes for older fillies and mares at 1 1/8 miles on turf.
Ward says conditions are ideal for City to City, a Kentucky-bred
daughter of City Zip.
“She’s coming into the race perfect,” Ward said. “She likes this
turf, it’s a good distance, and we’re even in Frankel’s old barn (at
Santa Anita, No. 48), so we’re going to give it a try.”
Ward could write a book about his tenure with Frankel, who died 25 months ago, but he kept his remembrances relatively brief.
“Nearly 20 ago I had a horse at Hollywood Park and Bobby was at
Santa Anita,” Ward said. “The horse was two, turning three and came to
the states in November. Bobby told me the horse was pretty good and to
get him ready for the Baldwin, which was in late March.
“So the horse is training OK, but the day before the race, Bobby
gets the (Racing) Form and says to me, ‘Do you like the horse? He’s got
no bleeping chance.’ You know how he talked.
“So I said, ‘Yeah, he’s gonna win. Bet your money.’ So he wins
with (Kent) Desormeaux (at odds of nearly 6-1). The horse was Future
Storm in 1993. They interviewed Bobby on TV after the race and asked him
if he liked the horse.
“Bobby says, ‘It’s the first time I’ve ever seen him.’”
Ward could write a book on Frankel, but he closed with this chapter.
“We had a horse at Hollywood Bobby didn’t think was that good.
She was a 3-year-old maiden and was training on the dirt. The meet was
about to start and this really good horse came in from France and was
going to prep for a stakes race.
“Bobby wanted to work him in company so we put the maiden in
against him. The maiden drew away from the horse from France. Bobby
asked me how the horse worked, and I said, ‘He couldn’t catch the
“It turned out to be Possibly Perfect, who was a multiple Grade I
stakes winner and Eclipse Award winner as champion grass female of
The field for the Frankel: Bauble Queen, Garrett Gomez;
Celestial Kitten, Mike Smith; City to City, Rafael Bejarano; Turning
Top, David Flores; Whisper Louise, Victor Espinoza; and Miss Mittagong,