Before Richard’s Kid began his final serious exercise preparatory to
the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic, trainer Doug O’Neill said he was
looking basically for a “steady, maintenance” work. But maybe with a
little more oomph than normal in places.
Then Richard’s Kid, working solo under jockey Joe Talamo, went the
first eighth of a mile in 13 seconds before proceeding through splits of
:25.6, :38.2, 1:02.2 and 1:13.60 for six furlongs before galloping out
seven furlongs in 1:26.00 and a mile in 1:39.20.
“That was nice,” O’Neill said. “I’ll be curious to see what Joe says,
but after going the first eighth of a mile in 13 (seconds) to finish up
the way he did just validates again his love of this racetrack and his
love of Del Mar.”
The observation of clocker Toby Turrell was: “It was a maintenance
work to the wire (6 furlongs), then they asked for a little more and he
responded. Which bodes well for the mile and a quarter (Pacific Classic
But what did Talamo have to say?
“If he runs the race the way he just worked ‘I got a Range Rover’,”
was the report from Talamo repeated by the O’Neill crew back at the
barn. “Joe said he finished strong, didn’t get tired and wanted to keep
Richard’s Kid, winner of the 2009 and 2010 Pacific Classics and third in last year’s 22nd
running of the event, would become the only three-time champion with a
victory. The 8-year-old son of Lemon Drop Kid won the 1 ½-mile Cougar II
Handicap on July 26, a race that was a stepping stone to his previous
O’Neill said Richard’s Kid would have an easy day on Saturday and then a series of gallops leading up to the race.
“He gallops strong every day, and after his win in the Cougar II he’s fit and ready,” O’Neill said.
Twenty-Two Nominated For TVG Pacific Classic
The names of twenty two horses were placed in nomination
for the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic before the Thursday night
deadline. A maximum of 14 can run in the track’s signature event and
that number has been reached only once, with Came Home prevailing over
13 rivals in 2002.
The nominated horses, in alphabetical order are:
Batti Man (trainer Dan Hendricks), Blueskiesnrainbows (Jerry
Hollendorfer), Byrama (Simon Callaghan), Delegation (Mark Casse),
Dullahan (Dale Romans), El Commodore (Mike Machowsky), Endorsement
(Hector Palma), Farraaj (Roger Varian), Game On Dude (Bob Baffert),
Grandeur (Jeremy Noseda), Hawk’s Eyes (A.C. Avila), Holding Glory (A.C.
Avila), Jeranimo (Mike Pender), Kettle Corn (John Sadler), Lady of
Fifty (Jerry Hollendorfer), Liaison (Bob Baffert), Paynter (Bob
Baffert), Richard’s Kid (Doug O’Neill), Sky Kingdom (Bob Baffert), Slim
Shadey (Simon Callaghan), Yomybato (Mike Pender) and You Know I Know