A. P. Indian finds faster track in Phoenix; 14 in Alcibiades

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

October 5th, 2016

Wet weather and an off track last weekend in New York was enough for trainer Arnaud Delacour to scratch his two-time Grade 1 winner A. P. Indian from the Vosburgh (G1). Instead, the six-year-old has been re-routed to Keeneland for his final Breeders' Cup Sprint (G1) prep in Friday's $250,000 Phoenix (G2).

Won by such recent luminaries as Wise Dan, Work All Week, and Runhappy, North America's oldest stakes shares the Keeneland fall meet opener with the $400,000 Alcibiades (G1), a 1 1/16-mile Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies (G1) that's attracted a capacity field of 14.

Always a consistent, if lightly-campaigned horse, A. P. Indian has reached the peak of his powers this season. After being elevated to first in his first outing of the year on opening day at Monmouth Park, the son of Indiana Charlie has won another four stakes without aide, including the Alfred G. Vanderbilt (G1) and Forego (G1) at Saratoga.

Weighted at 124 pounds, A. P. Indian must concede four pounds to his six rivals. Among these are Ami's Flatter, who captured the seven-furlong Commonwealth (G3) during the spring meet for Josie Carroll. Other leading contenders include Aristides (G3) winner Alsvid, a distant third in the Bing Crosby (G1) at Del Mar last time, and Limousine Liberal, a four-time runner-up in graded company for Ben Colebrook.

The Alcibiades has the look of a contentious and difficult betting race considering the large field and short stretch run. Daddys Lil Darling, recent winner of the Pocahontas (G2) at Churchill Downs in the mud, is one of the more accomplished in the field but drew the widest post for trainer Ken McPeek. Also exiting the Pocahontas are Dream Dancing, fourth as the favorite in that 1 1/16-mile test, and also-rans Sully's Dream and I'mluckysgirl.

Diadora, who defeated Benner Island by 5 1/2 lengths in the Arlington-Washington Lassie, will make her first dirt start in the Alcibiades. Benner Island, however, registered a debut victory on dirt at Indiana Grand in early August.

A number of Alcibiades starters exit turf races, including the stakes-placed Caroline Test and Lady Hansen, and Saratoga maiden winner Price too High. Schuylerville (G3) runner-up Fun and debut winner For Honor also made their last starts at the Spa, while Dancing Rags adds Lasix after her recent graduation at Laurel for Graham Motion.

(Adam Coglianese Photography)