It’s every trainer’s dream to win the Kentucky Derby, and Doug O’Neill
fulfilled that fantasy when he saddled I’ll Have Another to win the Run for the Roses in 2012. The beat goes on, but with the Breeders’ Cup drawing ever closer at Santa Anita next Friday and Saturday, O’Neill and his team are focused on their candidates for the championship events, which O’Neill equates to professional football’s Super Bowl.
“The Breeders’ Cup is a huge day for all of us in the business,” O’Neill said. “There’s only one Kentucky Derby, but the great thing about the Breeders’ Cup is there are more opportunities. A horse gets only one chance to run in the Derby and only 20 horses a year at most have a chance to get into the starting gate.
“The Breeders’ Cup is much more spread out and your chances are greater to hit one out of the park. It’s the Super Bowl and we’re pumped up with some live chances.”
Among O’Neill’s Breeders’ Cup workers Friday was Santa Anita Derby winner Goldencents
, who went five furlongs for the Dirt Mile in a bullet 58.40 under Rafael Bejarano.
“Goldencents actually ran into some (unexpected) company,” O’Neill said. “He was trying to go by himself but some company was in front of him and he caught them. He went a little quicker than we wanted, but he did it real easy and he’s spot-on, ready to go.”
FrontRunner winner Bond Holder
also worked five furlongs, going in 1:03.80. “He’s a solid horse,” O’Neill said. “The first eighth of a work’s going to make the final time, and they were just cruising early. He finished up good and galloped out strong and he’s ready to go.”
Other O’Neill workers included Clenor
(Juvenile Fillies Turf), four furlongs on grass in 48.40; Renee’s Titan
(Filly & Mare Sprint), five furlongs in 1:00.20; and Concave
(Juvenile Fillies), five furlongs on the main track in 59.40.
Defending Turf Sprint winner Mizdirection
went five furlongs on turf in 57.80 for Mike Puype, while likely Juvenile contender Diamond Bachelor
worked five furlongs on the main track in 1:00.60 for Patrick Biancone.
“We’re very happy with her,” Puype said of Mizdirection, who’s owned in-part by Jim Rome’s Jungle Racing. “She’s ready to go.”
The Breeders’ Cup wagering menu will include $2 win, place, show and daily double betting; $1 exactas and a $1 daily double from the Distaff to the Classic; 50-cent betting on Trifectas, Pick 3s, Pick 4s, Pick 5s and the Super Hi 5; and 10-cent Superfecta wagering. MIGLIORE BRINGS ENTHUSIASM AND EXPERTISE TO HRTV
Richard Migliore’s the kind of guy who could get excited watching a test pattern. Imagine how he feels about the Breeders’ Cup.
A perennial top rider in New York and a winner of Santa Anita’s George Woolf Memorial Jockey Award in 2008, “The Mig” now lends his valued and enthusiastic expertise for HRTV, and is on hand at Santa Anita for the Breeders’ Cup World Championships.
“I’ve been retired for 3 ½ years and been doing HRTV for three,” Migliore said while glad-handing his many friends at Clockers’ Corner Friday morning. “HRTV has given me an incredible opportunity.
“This is what I know about; this is what I love, so it’s easy to talk about it. It also gives me the chance to get out here and see everybody, all the friends I’ve made in the game.
“The Breeders’ Cup is really exciting and that’s what it’s supposed to be, horses getting together and settling it on the race track. I think the Distaff this year, although it’s not going to be a huge field (six were pre-entered), displays that more than any other race.
“You get Princess of Sylmar, Beholder, Royal Delta. They’re going to settle the championship on the race track.”