Desormeaux gets Grade I ride atop Warning Glance


Kent Desormeaux will ride Warning Glance in the colt's first Grade I appearance, and Concern is bypassing a rematch with Cigar.

That's the news concerning two of the three Maryland-breds that were listed to race this weekend on Belmont Park's Super Saturday stakes card, which is a preview of the Oct. 28 Breeders' Cup.

The speedy Warning Glance gets the biggest test of his career when he faces at least a half-dozen European runners in the $400,000 Man o' War Stakes at 1 3/8 miles on the grass. A good performance by Stuart Janney III's local front-runner could mean a berth in the starting lineup of the $2 million Breeders' Cup Turf.

With Concern out, Cigar, the third part of what would have been a Maryland-bred Super Saturday stakes trio, could face as few as four other rivals -- Schossberg, Star Spangled, Malthus and Patsyprospect -- in the $500,000 Woodward Stakes. The Pimlico Special winner will be the odds-on choice to win his 10th consecutive race and to stay on track in a quest for Horse of the Year honors. The only other Maryland-bred to win the title was Challedon in 1939 and 1940.

Dick Small, the trainer of Concern, said that he was not satisfied with the way his colt worked a mile at Pimlico on Monday. Small said that the horse did not finish with his customary late kick. Preliminary tests indicate that he didn't bleed or injure his legs.

"I don't want to commit to a race right now because we're not sure what the problem is," Small said. "Whether he's past his peak or what, we don't know. I certainly don't want to run him if he's not perfect."

Desormeaux replaces the ailing Mark Johnston as the rider on Warning Glance. Johnston broke his collarbone in a spill at Pimlico last week and could be sidelined for five to six weeks.

Desormeaux, who normally competes on the Southern California circuit, is riding in New York while West Coast racing takes its annual fall break.

Warning Glance's trainer, Charlie Hadry, shipped the horse to Belmont on Monday and plans to blow him out for the Man o' War this morning. "I'll work him on the dirt, because I don't want him to go too fast," Hadry said about the son of Caveat, who excels on turf.

Other horses with Maryland connections that race Saturday are De Francis Dash winner Lite the Fuse, who starts in the Vosburgh Stakes, and Feather Box, the Buckland Farm-owned 2-year-old colt who broke his maiden in his first start at Laurel Park this summer.

Feather Box is now trained at Belmont Park by former jockey Angel Cordero Jr.

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