Contact: Graham Ross
(847) 255-4300
Monday, August 14, 2000
Festival Week (Mon.)


American favorite Manndar, and his European counterpart Slickly, the heavyweight contenders for Saturday's Grade 1 Arlington Million, are scheduled to complete their last serious moves Tuesday and Wednesday respectively in preparation for the main event of the Chicago thoroughbred racing season.

Columbine Stable, J. Merrick Jones & Tom Nicholls' Manndar, dominant winner of a pair of Grade 1 events in his last two starts, "will probably breeze a slow half-mile," trainer Beau Greely said of his colt's Tuesday turf course move at 8:15 a.m.

Godolphin's Slickly, a winner in Group 1 company at Longchamp in his only trip to the post this year, "will only have a blowout, not a real work," Godolphin assistant Brian Powell said of the European campaigner's Wednesday grass course tightener.

Aboard for Manndar's Tuesday work will be Andy Durnin, a talented free-lance exercise rider who accompanied Manndar on the equine flight from California. The Irishman, who was in the national spotlight last spring as the exercise rider for Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus, is a friend of Greely's as well as his temporary assistant.

Greely arrived in Chicago from his Southern California headquarters late Saturday afternoon. Manndar and Durnin were on the grounds Thursday morning.

"I would think he likes a touch of 'cut' in the ground," said Greely, when asked about Manndar's preferred turf conditions for Saturday's Million, "but he handles most surfaces. I wouldn't think he would like it if it was hard like a putting green like it can get in California."

Slickly, who arrived at Arlington in the wee hours of Friday morning after a flight from France to O'Hare Airport, galloped a mile and a quarter on the main track Monday, and will probably gallop about a mile and a half on Tuesday prior to Wednesday's move.

Astride Slickly since his Arlington arrival has been Powell, an Englishman who was born a short distance from Newmarket and now lives there when not in Dubai.

Godolphin Racing Manager Simon Crisford, trainer Saeed bin Suroor and jockey Frankie Dettori are scheduled to arrive at Arlington Thursday. "He's been lightly trained," said Powell of Slickly. "There is no specific reason he's only had one race this year, other than that there hasn't been a suitable race for him."

Nancy Vanier's Wade for Me, one of two supplementary nominations to Saturday's Grade 1 Beverly D., breezed five furlongs over the Arlington turf course in 1:03 2/5 Monday morning at 9:30 a.m., with regular rider Chris Emigh aboard.

"It was just what I wanted," said trainer Harvey Vanier as he scraped excess water from Wade for Me following the chestnut mare's bath shortly after the work. "It was just an easy thing - an 'around-the-town' kind of work.

"I hope she wins," said Vanier of Saturday's Beverly D., sister race to the Million. "She's an Illinois-bred, so it would be good for us, and good for Illinois racing."

Also on Monday's work tab was Grade 1 Secretariat candidate Hymn, owned by Richard Nip & Scott Goldsher. Hymn, who finished second beaten a length and a half in the Grade 2 American Derby here July 23, drilled six furlongs in 1:15 4/5 at 10 a.m.

"That's pretty much what I wanted," said trainer Richard Lundy, who worked the three-year-old Irish-bred colt in company with Modesty runner-up Candleinthedark. "I couldn't ask for more than that. They teach them to work in company over there. When she (Candleinthedark) put her head in front, he came back and got her again."

Pat Garvey's Sunshine Street has been withdrawn from Saturday's Arlington Million, reducing the prospective field to nine starters. Rich Meadow Farm's Dawn Of The Condor has been scratched from Saturday's Secretariat, but that ownership's Slew Valley is now expected to be supplemented.

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