Del Mar, CA
Colonel John, a multiple Grade I winner on dirt, will attempt the turf for the first time in Friday's featured Wickerr Handicap at Del Mar. The Wickerr carries a purse of $85,000 and is a steep class drop for Colonel John who has been installed as the 5/2 favorite in the morning line. A concern is that trainer Eoin Hardy is just 3 for 36 with horses making their first start on the grass.
This is Colonel John's first race of 2009 and on the surface, it looks like his connections are using this much easier spot to prep for the $1,000,000 Pacific Classic than taking on the competition in Sunday's San Diego Handicap. Garret Gomez will ride.