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Conniption Readies for American Oaks

Hollywood Park logo.
Photo: Hollywood Park
Trainer Simon Callaghan, fresh off his first graded stakes victory in the United States with Turning Top in the $100,000 Grade III Beverly Hills Handicap Saturday, hopes to write the same winning formula with Conniption in the $250,000 Grade I American Oaks next Saturday.

Like Turning Top, Conniption is an Irish-bred filly owned by Michael Tabor attempting to stretch out to 1 ¼ miles on turf off a victory at one mile on the lawn here. Both began their careers in England before being shipped to California this year.

“Conniption just breezed five-eighths this morning in 1:01 with Brice Blanc,” said Callaghan from his Santa Anita training base Sunday. “It was a nice maintenance work.”

Conniption, by Danehill Dancer out of the Sadler’s Wells mare Showbiz, comes off an allowance score here May 20, her second win in six starts. “I’m optimistic she will get the trip,” said Callaghan of the added distance.

Other probable starters starters include Senorita Stakes winner Cozi Rosie (Mike Smith), Providencia Stakes winner City to City (Joel Rosario), Harmonious (Martin Garcia) and Andina (Rafael Bejarano). Andina worked six furlongs on turf in 1:17 for trainer Ben Cecil. Weekend Magic, a nominee from the Myung Kwon Cho barn, worked four furlongs on turf in 51.60.

Callaghan said that Turning Top, a 4-year-old filly, returned in good shape following her fourth straight victory and would be nominated to both the Beverly D. at Arlington Park and the John Mabee Stakes at Del Mar for her next start.

Callaghan, 27, was born in England, the son of retired trainer Neville Callaghan. He moved to California before Christmas and has eight horses at Santa Anita. “It’s very different here but I worked for Todd Pletcher six or seven years ago, so I knew what to expect,” said Callaghan.


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