Synthetic Prep Anyone?

by Ed Meyer

posted on September 19, 2008 in Breeders Cup, General Discussion, News | No Comments >>

Indian Blessing is maturing into a BEAST. She is coming along at the right time, and looks to be the real deal. But she has been changing her mind as of late. Or, at least Bob Baffert is doing it for her.

She was scheduled to run at Belmont and scratched out of the race. Good thing. The hurricane moved in and really made the track a mess. Then she was heading to Presque Isle. It looked like her prep was going to be synthetic, and from what I have seen, this seems to be a good decision (as runners usually need a race over the surface). But no, she changed her mind again. She is now scheduled to run in the Gallant Bloom at Belmont.

She is scheduled to face 4 other fillies in a 6 1/2 furlong race….. I know Baffert has said he wants to have her relax. Or is it he who needs to relax? This guy is Ginsu sharp. He knows that synthetic surfaces can be tricky. He moved most of his runners East to stay clear. What will she get out of this race? A big purse? Is that her goal? I am sure it will be nice, but if she is to prepare for the Breeders’ Cup, she needs to head on out at a leisurely pace. Here are a couple of suggestions that may have worked.

John Velasquez is going to ride Commentator at Suffolk, and she has Cory Nakatani in the saddle. No sweat there, but what will she get from this race?  I never question a top notch trainer, but in this case I will. Indian Blessing needs to be headed toward California. She could run at Turfway Park on Kentucky Cup Day, hit Keeneland to prep over the Poly track on Fall-Stars weekend, or just get out there and try to work into the Pro-Ride surface and be ready for the race of her life.

Did anyone tell Baffert? Proud Spell is probably headed out to California. Ask Bobby Frankel who may withdraw Sugar Swirl and head to Keeneland… Might be a good idea….