Photo: Eclipse Sportswire - Alex Evers
Dan Ward, assistant to Hall of Fame trainer Jerry Hollendorfer, issued an upbeat bulletin as Sahara Sky
schooled in the paddock on Friday, one day in advance of his scheduled
start as the 2-1 morning line favorite in the Grade 1, $500,000 Carter
Handicap."It takes two people to hold him," said Ward. "He's very happy.
He's very experienced shipping, settled right in, eats everything,
trains with a lot of gusto. He's a handful."
Sky, a 6-year-old four-time graded stakes winner owned by Hollendorfer
and Kim Lloyd, is taking another crack at the seven-furlong Carter
Handicap after finishing second by a nose to Swagger Jack in last year's
edition. In his following start, Sahara Sky returned to New York in May
and tagged Cross Traffic by a nose on the wire in Belmont Park's Grade 1
Met Mile was Sahara Sky's final start of 2013. He was fifth in his 2014
debut, the Grade 2 Palos Verdes in February, before employing a burst
of speed in the stretch to register a half-length repeat victory in the
Grade 2 San Carlos on March 8. Both starts came at Santa Anita, where he
might be sounder than last year," said Ward. "We've had a lot of
problems keeping him sound and keeping him going all year. This year,
he's training really, really sound, maybe because he's now training on
dirt. He's always been on synthetic at Hollywood Park, but since we've
been training at Santa Anita he seems to be a lot sounder. He's happy,
and he always tries hard."