Cal­houn hop­ing Mr. Money can start hot streak for stable

Daily Racing Form National Digital Edition - - News - By Mar­cus Hersh

Trainer Bret Cal­houn has won as many as 50 races dur­ing a Fair Grounds rac­ing sea­son. Right now, even a cou­ple would feel pretty good.

Cal­houn, through rac­ing of Jan. 10 at Fair Grounds, had a meet record of 52-3-7-4, which is not at all like his stable’s typ­i­cal pro­duc­tion level. “Due” may be just an empty con­cept, but re­ally, Cal­houn is due for a Fair Grounds hot streak.

“It’s been pretty rough, a slow meet for a num­ber of rea­sons,” Cal­houn said by phone Thurs­day. “I think I’ve got a hand­ful of nice young prospects com­ing to hand and the week­end of the 19th would be a good time to get things rolling.”

Road to the Derby Kick­off Day is Jan. 19 at Fair Grounds, and Cal­houn has one of the likely fa­vorites, Mr. Money, for the Grade 3, $200,000 Le­comte Stakes. Cal­houn also plans to run Cow­girls Like Us, win­ner of the Trapeze Stakes at Rem­ing­ton Park last out, in the $150,000 Sil­ver­bul­let­day on the same Fair Grounds card.

Mr. Money’s last start came un­der bright lights, a fourth­place fin­ish in the Breed­ers’ Cup Ju­ve­nile. Rac­ing just be­hind the lead­ers, Mr. Money loomed on the far turn as though he meant to do some­thing se­ri­ous. His run flat­tened out be­fore the eighth pole, but he still stayed on en­cour­ag­ingly to fin­ish fourth of 13.

“He ran well. At the three­eighths pole, he got us pretty ex­cited,” Cal­houn said.

The BC Ju­ve­nile was Mr. Money’s first try against other win­ners. He had grad­u­ated at third ask­ing Sept. 28 at Churchill when Cal­houn stretched him out to a route for the first time.

“I thought he got a lot of sea­son­ing his first cou­ple races, got a cou­ple dif­fi­cult trips, and he might have broke his maiden ear­lier with a bet­ter trip,” Cal­houn said. “Look­ing at the [Ju­ve­nile] field, I thought there was one stand­out and that the rest of us were pretty sim­i­lar, so we thought we’d give him a shot.”

The stand­out, Game Win­ner, won by over two lengths, but on es­tab­lished form there’s no horse of close to com­pa­ra­ble qual­ity in the Le­comte. Mr. Money, owned by Al­lied Rac­ing Stable, raced a lit­tle too keenly down the back­stretch of his two route races and has room to im­prove in that area, and Cal­houn said the colt, by Gold­en­cents and out of the Tiznow mare Plenty O’Toole, “has trained phe­nom­e­nally” since get­ting back to reg­u­lar ex­er­cise fol­low­ing a short fresh­en­ing af­ter ar­riv­ing at Fair Grounds.

As for Cow­girls Like Us, she got in six starts as a 2-yearold, but from her trainer’s per­spec­tive just now should be start­ing to come into her own. Cow­girls Like Us, a Dou­glas Schar­bauer home­bred by My Golden Song out of Noth in bet­ter to do, de­buted in late May in a 4 1/2-fur­long sprint at Lone Star but wasn’t re­ally a pre­co­cious type.

“She’s a filly that was a big­ger, good-look­ing, scopier filly early on. She wasn’t re­ally made to do what we asked her to do that early, and it took her a few races to get it to­gether. We thought longer would be bet­ter for her,” Cal­houn said.

Cow­girls Like Us won the off-the-turf Senorita Stakes in her two-turn de­but and was com­fort­ably best beat­ing seven ri­vals Dec. 16 in the $100,000 Trapeze, an­other route. She ap­pears to be com­ing into her 2019 cam­paign pointed in the right di­rec­tion, and her trainer hopes that might gen­er­ally be the case for his slum­ber­ing New Or­leans stable.

Al­lowances top Sun­day card

There are just eight races carded Sun­day at Fair Grounds, but the heart of the pro­gram has sub­stance.

Race 5 is a sec­ond-level turf sprint al­lowance with a $40,000 claim­ing op­tion for fil­lies and mares, while race 6 is a firstlevel, two-turn dirt al­lowance race for 3-year-old fil­lies – a softer spot for young tal­ent not quite ready for next week­end’s Sil­ver­bul­let­day Stakes.

Trainer Brad Cox might have the right horse for both.

In race 5, Cox tries Good Move on turf for the first time, and the 4-year-old filly stands a de­cent chance of tak­ing to the sur­face. She’s by Bro­ken Vow, a de­cent grass in­flu­ence, and her dam, Change Up, equaled her ca­reer-best Beyer Speed Fig­ure, a 96, win­ning the lone grass race of her ca­reer. Good Move won her de­but and a first-level al­lowance race last win­ter at Oak­lawn Park, but things went amiss there­after. She fin­ished up the track on a sloppy sur­face in the Miss Preak­ness Stakes in May, didn’t start again un­til Novem­ber, and again failed to fire on a wet dirt track, this time at Churchill Downs. Good Move has been post­ing fast works at Fair Grounds and with a de­cent break un­der Shaun Bridg­mo­han should be prom­i­nent from the start.

Cox en­tered two 3-year-old fil­lies in race 6 – Dora Maar was just claimed for $30,000 on Dec. 20 and looks like the B team be­hind Cox’s other filly, Cos­mic Code. Cos­mic Code, a Jud­dmonte Farms home­bred by Into Mis­chief out of Touch the Star, de­buted on grass, but won her maiden sec­ond out on dirt, eas­ily beat­ing 11 ri­vals in a Nov. 25 Churchill route. She re­turned at Fair Grounds on Dec. 21 in a first-level dirt-route al­lowance and af­ter slog­ging along on a con­tested pace was run down late by Gran­daria, a likely player in the Sil­ver­bul­let­day.

Broad­way Cat and Street Band look like the main com­pe­ti­tion, though the Louisiana-bred Fugi­tive Lady won a state­bred-re­stricted maiden race Dec. 1 at Fair Grounds by a star­tling 18 1/4 lengths.

BAR­BARA D. LIV­INGSTON

Mr. Money will en­ter Satur­day’s Le­comte Stakes at Fair Grounds off a fourth-place fin­ish in the Breed­ers’ Cup Ju­ve­nile.

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