Super grass runner The Usual Q.T., winner of Del
Mar's Eddie Read Stakes on the season's opening weekend, has joined the list of
prospects for the Grade I, $1-million Pacific Classic on Saturday, August 28.
Following a 6-furlong workout on the main track,
trainer Jim Cassidy said he is considering the Pacific Classic as the
4-year-old gelding's next start. The Usual Q.T. handled the synthetic surface
well, Cassidy said, and went the distance in 1:13.80. "I thought it was a
great work," Cassidy said.
Regular rider Victor Espinoza was in the irons for
The Usual Q.T. scored his maiden victory at Del Mar in 2009 on the
turf to start a six-race win streak that included the Oak Tree Derby and the
Hollywood Derby, both on grass.
Another who appears on the road to the Pacific
Classic is the defending champion, Richard's Kid, who worked 4 furlongs in a
bullet 46 flat this morning. The Bob Baffert trainee finished third in the
Cougar II Handicap on July 30, a race Baffert used last year as a stepping
Three other potential Pacific Classic starters worked
in the past two days. Hollywood Gold Cup winner Awesome Gem drilled 5 furlongs
in 1:01.60 on Monday under exercise rider Jose Orozco. Of the 7-year-old son of
Awesome Again's second workout since the Gold Cup, trainer Craig Dollase said
he was pleased with the effort. "He came back in good shape, and he had a
light jog today [Wednesday]," Dollase said.
"He'll work again next Sunday or Monday."
Working on Tuesday toward the Pacific Classic were
Isle of Giant's and Crowded House for trainer Ben Cecil. The English-bred
Crowded House, who finished fourth in the Eddie Read in his American debut,
traveled 6 furlongs in 1:14.20 on the main track, and Isle of Giant's, fourth
in the San Diego Handicap, stopped the clock in 49.40 for a
On Sunday, San Diego winner Dakota Phone worked 4 furlongs in :49.40 for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer.