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STABLE NOTES BY ED GOLDEN
• TRAINER EYES GOLD CUP UPSET WITH MAJESTIC HARBOR
• STORY TO TELL MAKES HIS STAKES DEBUT ON SUNDAY
• MILLER’S NATURAL HAT TRICK CLOSES GAP ON O’NEILL
GOLD CUP DISTANCE SHOULD BENEFIT MAJESTIC HARBOR
It’s not easy to find an ideal spot after winning a stakes race at a mile and a half, but Sean McCarthy is hoping for the best with Majestic Harbor, who tackles Game On Dude, Fury Kapcori, Imperative, Clubhouse Ride and others in next Saturday’s Grade I, $500,000 Gold Cup at Santa Anita for 3-year-olds and up at a mile and a quarter.
Majestic Harbor was third behind Clubhouse Ride and Fury Kapcori in the Californian at a mile and an eighth on May 31. Prior to that, the 6-year-old Rockport Harbor horse won the mile and a half Tokyo City Cup by three lengths.
“The distance will certainly be more beneficial to him,” McCarthy said of the 10 furlongs of the Gold Cup. “He’s been running with these horses all winter and been right there with them, and this is the first time he gets to a go a mile and a quarter with them.”
Majestic Harbor is scheduled to have his final major workout for the Gold Cup Sunday, going five furlongs.
In other Gold Cup news:
Expected pacesetter Fury Kapcori, winner of four straight races before losing by a half-length to Clubhouse Ride in the Californian, worked six furlongs Saturday in 1:12.60 for Jerry Hollendorfer.
Charles Town Classic winner Imperative is scheduled to work four furlongs on Monday under regular rider Kent Desormeaux for trainer George Papaprodromou.
MATURE STORY TO TELL SET FOR SUNDAY’S SANTA ANITA JUVENILE
Story to Tell has had only one race, winning by a length and a quarter at 4 ½ furlongs on May 23, but the 2-year-old son of Bluegrass Cat is cool beyond his years.
“He’s been very mature since the day we got him out of the (Barretts) sale,” trainer Dan Hendricks said. “He’s gone straight forward, never been a problem.”
As for strategy in Sunday’s $125,000 Santa Anita Juvenile at 5 ½ furlongs, Hendricks said, “All the horses in there broke their maidens with speed, so it’s going to be a matter of the break, the first sixteenth of a mile, getting a position.
“There’s speed inside and outside of me, so if he breaks on top, fine; if not he can sit right behind them and hopefully pounce and make one move.”
The field for the Santa Anita Juvenile: Global Magician, Elvis Trujillo, 8-1; Kristi’s Copilot, Aaron Gryder, 4-1; Story to Tell, Joe Talamo, 3-1; Holiday Camp, Martin Garcia, 2-1; Wake Up Nick, Mario Gutierrez, 4-1; Homer Matt, Edwin Maldonado, 8-1; and Henry’s Holiday, Tyler Baze, 8-1.
FINISH LINES: Peter Miller saddled the first three winners yesterday at Santa Anita, narrowing Doug O’Neill’s lead in the race for Spring Meet training honors to 24-20 with six days remaining . . . Potrero Grande Stakes winner Big Macher worked five furlongs for Richard Baltas in 1:02.20, galloping out six furlongs in 1:15 3/5 . . . Blue Grass Stakes winner Dance With Fate worked six furlongs under Jose Aragon on Santa Anita’s main track Saturday in a bullet 1:11 flat in preparation for the Grade I, $1.25 million Belmont Derby Invitational at 1 ¼ miles on turf July 5. “It was a little quicker than I was looking for,” trainer Peter Eurton said, “but I needed to go quicker rather than slower. He’s still got two weeks (before the race).” . . . Trainer Jorge Gutierrez reports turf stakes winner Bright Thought is back galloping after removal of an undescended testicle following his fifth-place finish in the Grade II Charles Whittingham Stakes on May 24 . . . Unseated near the half-mile pole in Friday’s last race at a mile on grass, jockey Kayla Stra suffered a bruised tailbone . . . Carson Sullivan, a seven-pound apprentice rider who tacks 110 pounds and has been riding at Gulfstream Park, is scheduled to make his Santa Anita debut next Friday, June 27. Agent Mike Ciani, who represents Hall of Fame journeyman Kent Desormeaux, will have his book . . . Multiple graded stakes winner Jeranimo is ticketed for the Grade I Eddie Read Stakes at Del Mar on July 20, trainer Mike Pender reports . . . Jose Valdivia Jr. was named today on five horses at Gulfstream Park, where he has joined the Florida jockey colony . . . Gary Stute had to settle for a split pot when his 14-1 shot Flew Flicker finished in a dead-heat for first with favored Tenkiller Kid in yesterday’s seventh race. “I thought I won,” said the trainer, whose win payoff was cut more than 50 percent. “It kind of hurt because I was expecting $30, not $12, but it’s better than nothing.” Because of the dead-heat, Stute also received only 40 percent of the winner’s share of the purse, instead of 60 percent . . . Congratulations to Santa Anita morning line oddsmaker Jon White, who is 1-10 to celebrate his birthday today. White will present a trophy to the winning connections of today’s second race, the $40,000 Klondike Starter Handicap.