With weather coast-to-coast wreaking havoc on firm shipping plans and workout schedules, Richard Mandella, known for running an ultra-tight ship, has matters pretty much under control for Beholder and her expected engagement in the Breeders' Cup Classic at Keeneland on Oct. 31.
Face it: Mandella's middle name is “Organized.”
Beholder, a winner of two Eclipse Awards and in prime pouncing position to earn her third, should work this week for a likely start in the $5 million Classic in what could be a showdown for Horse of the Year honors with Triple Crown winner American Pharoah.
“She came out of her race great,” Mandella said of the 3 ¼-length romp by Beholder in the Sept. 26 Zenyatta Stakes, which gave the 5-year-old mare a record three straight scores in the Grade I race.
“She's back galloping, doing great. She'll get a little work sometime this week. It could be Wednesday, Thursday, Friday; I just don't know. She'll have two breezes at Santa Anita, a shorter one and a longer one, and one at Keeneland before the Classic.
“Right now, we are surely thinking of the Classic, but by the time we ship (Oct. 19), and all of that, if we had a feeling that she had regressed at all, we would go the more conservative route and run her in the filly race ($2 million Distaff on Oct. 30).
“But right now we have no intention of that. We plan to run in the big one.”
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