DRYSDALE: LABEEB "POSSIBLE" FOR HOLLYWOOD TURF HANDICAP Maktoum Al Maktoum's Labeeb drilled six furlongs in a deliberate 1:20 3/5, handily, on a firm turf course Thursday and remained a possible starter in Monday's $500,000 Hollywood Turf Handicap. Trainer Neil Drysdale expressed satisfaction with the work and said a reported foot problem, which he said amounted to little more than a small bruise, isn't a major concern. "The foot is fine," Drysdale said. "It's no concern, never has been. The concern is the spacing of the races. He raced two weeks ago (in a $54,000 allowance)." Entries for the Grade I race at 1 1/4 miles will be drawn Saturday, and Drysdale said he didn't anticipate making a decision before then. Here are the probables for the 28th running of the $500,000 Hollywood Turf Handicap: Northern Spur, Chris McCarron, 123; Sandpit, Corey Nakatani, 120; Awad, Pat Day, 118; Petit Poucet, no rider, 116; Earl Of Barking, Gary Stevens, 116, and The Key Rainbow, Alex Solis, 113. Possible: Labeeb, Eddie Delahoussaye, 118, and Wavy Run, no rider, 114.
CLAMOROSA TUNES UP FOR HONEYMOON HANDICAP
Jeffrey S. Sullivan's Clamorosa took her first spin over the Hollywood Park turf course Thursday, working a half-mile in :52 flat (dogs up), in a prep for Sunday's $125,000-added Honeymoon Handicap for 3-year-old fillies. Frank Castillo was up for trainer Elliott Walden.
Clamorosa, a Maryland-bred by Seattle Dancer, was claimed for $25,000 three months ago and has won two of three starts for her new owner, including two stakes. Most recently, she set a Keeneland track record for 1 1/8 miles on turf -- 1:46 4/5 -- while winning the $73,000 Palisades Stakes by 2 1/2 lengths. In other developments, Antespend, the 122-pound highweight, worked five furlongs in 1:00, handily, for trainer Ron McAnally. And Ian Jory, trainer of Hear The Music, said the filly's 12th place showing in the Grade III Senorita Stakes was a throwout. "She got nervous in the gate, reared up and banged her head on the side support," he said. "She came out of the race with big scrapes below her ear and her eye."
Hear The Music, a $40,000 purchase at the Newmarket Horses In Training Sale, has shown flashes of ability. Her best effort was in the restricted Opening Bid Stakes Feb. 28 at Santa Anita. She quickly opened four lengths on the field, carried a long lead into the stretch and was nipped at the wire by Pike Place Dancer. Pike Place Dancer has since gone on to win the Grade I Kentucky Oaks. Early probables for the 45th running of the Honeymoon Handicap, for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/8 miles on the turf course: Antespend, Chris Antley, 122; Gastronomical, Kent Desormeaux, 117; Ribot's Secret, Eddie Delahoussaye, 117; Clamorosa, Chris McCarron, 116; Hear The Music, Brice Blanc, 113; Staffin, Gary Stevens, 113; Rumpipumpy, Rene Douglas, 113, and Taxabale Deduction, no rider, 112.
JULIO CESAR CHAVEZ TO SPAR AT HOLLYWOOD PARK
Champion Julio Cesar Chavez, a boxing legend and national hero of his Mexican countrymen, makes his final Los Angeles appearance Saturday, May 25, at Hollywood Park as he spars in preparation for his 100th career fight -- a June 7 WBC super lightweight title bout against Oscar De La Hoya. Chavez, 33, will spar several rounds in front of the Hollywood fans from approximately 11:15 a.m. to 12 p.m. The ring will be situated on the apron in the general admission area. General admission is $6. Children 17 and under must be accompanied by adults and are admitted free. Chavez will have a race named in his honor. Afterwards, he will decorate the winner and address his legion of fans. The appearance will be the second by Chavez at Hollywood Park. He drew 33,009 fans in 1993 when he sparred and was honored by Hollywood Park.
SIMULCASTS ON TAP THIS WEEKEND
Hollywood Park will present simulcast wagering on a pair of out-of-town stakes races over the Memorial Day weekend. Saturday's simulcast is the $100,000-guaranteed Sheridan Stakes from Arlington Park. The Grade III event is for 3-year-olds at one mile. Monday's simulcast is the $400,000-guaranteed Metropolitan Handicap from Belmont Park. The one mile race features Unbridled's Song and Hollywood Park-based shipper Afternoon Deelites.
MILESTONES . . . Jockey Gary Stevens, 3,979 lifetime wins, needed 21 victories to reach 4,000.
Trainer Ron McAnally, 1,499 wins, needed one victory to reach 1,
Ben Cecil's record since taking out his trainers license March 4 -- 48 starts, 11 wins, eight seconds, five thirds, $887,515 in purses.
FINISH LINES: : Mel Stute once set a Hollywood Park record by winning at least one race for eight consecutive days. Things haven't gone quite as well for the veteran conditioner at the start of the current meet. He was 0-for-33, but retained his usual upbeat manner and said the tides will soon change. "I've had streaks like this in the past," he said. "One time at Golden Gate I lost 57 straight races. In this game, you have to learn to take the good with the bad." . . . Perhaps Bill M. Thomas' Klassy Kim will be the horse to change Stute's luck. The multiple stakes-winning mare blew out a half-mile in a quick :46 3/5 for Saturday's $100,000-added Hawthorne Handicap . . . Speaking of the Hawthorne, the Grade II event came up extremely tough with the likes of Jewel Princess, Borodislew, Urbane, Cat's Cradle and Sleep Easy all entering the 1 1/16-mile event. Said Urbane's trainer Randy Bradshaw: "It's a tougher field than some Grade I, $200,000 races." Brice Blanc rode his first winner as a journeyman, Pismo Bay ($6.40), in Wednesday's fourth race . . . Alex Campbell's Mr Purple, the only horse still eligible for the $1-million bonus that goes to any horse sweeping the MGM Grand Classic Crown, worked six furlongs in preparation for the $250,000 Californian on Sunday, June 2. The Santa Anita Handicap winner will have a new rider in the Californian, with Corey Nakatani taking the call for trainer Ron McAnally. Eddie Delahoussaye, who was aboard Mr Purple for the 18-1 upset in the Big 'Cap, has opted to ride Tinners Way for Bobby Frankel in the Californian. Other early probables for the Grade I event at 1 1/8 miles: Del Mar Dennis (Alex Solis), Helmsman (Chris McCarron), Siphon (Kent Desormeaux) and Score Quick (no rider) . . . Karakorum (Chris Antley), Toot Sweet (Blanc) and Call Shea (no rider) are among the 3-year-old Cal-bred fillies expected to run in Monday's $75,000-added Melair Stakes at 1 1/16 miles . . . The field for Monday's $50,000-added Westchester Stakes for 2-year-olds is expected to include Renteria (Martin Pedroza), Newsworthy (Gary Stevens) and All A Con (Delahoussaye).