Wasserman is top local horse among 29 Mile nominees

For the Reporter

Wasserman, who ran third in last year’s Longacres Mile, figures to be one of the top local threats in this year’s race, and was on the preliminary list of 29 nominees released on Sunday.

The 73rd running of the $300,000, Grade III Mile is Aug. 17 at Emerald Downs, with weights to be announced this Saturday. Field size is limited to 12 starters with high weights preferred. The 29 nominations is an increase of two over last year.

Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandela, who won the race 30 years ago with Bad’N Big, nominated California-based runners, Perfect Drift and One Union. The former is a 9-year-old, multiple Grade I winner who would be the richest horse ever to run in the state. Perfect Drift has earnings of more than $4.7 million.

One Union is owned by Seattle sportsman Herman Sarkowsky and won the Wickerr Handicap on turf last month at Del Mar.

Tropic Storm, trained by Craig Dollase for West Point Thoroughbreds, would appear to have some of the best credentials on the list. The 4-year-old Florida-bred has run strong recent races at 7 ½ and 7 furlongs, finishing second in the Grade 3 Ack Ack and third in the Grade I Triple Bend, both at Hollywood Park.

Wasserman, a 6-year-old gelding has had a dream season for owner-trainer Howard Belvoir. Wasserman won the FSN and Governor’s handicaps in dramatic fashion, and just missed a third stakes victory in the Mt. Rainier Handicap.

Trainers Jerry Hollendorfer and Mike Chambers nominated the most horses at four apiece.

Hollendorfer, who saddled Adreamisborn to win the 2004 Mile, nominated Blue Exit, Our Partner, Putmeinyourwill and Saratoga’s Magic.

Chambers, whose older runners have been forces in the local handicap division this season, nominated Chhaya Dance, Lord Avalon, Maxey Boy and Nationhood.

A pair of 3-year-olds were nominated: Blue Exit and Texas Wildcatter. The latter of those is the first Todd Pletcher-trained horse nominated to an Emerald Downs race.

Trainer Ted H. West and owner Jeffrey Sengara teamed with Budroyale to win the 1999 Longacres Mile, and could return nine years later with Luhuk’s Dancer, a 5-year-old they claimed for $80,000 with an eye toward The Mile.

Flamethrowintexan, winner of the 2006 Mile, is the only former winner on the list and one of two horses nominated by Jim Penney, who owns a record five victories in The Mile. Penney also nominated Honour the West.

True Metropolitan, who has won 18 races and more than $1 million in a 37-race career, is among five Canada-based horses nominated to The Mile.

Below is the list of nominees (pending late mail, e-mail or fax) as of Sunday:

Horse (age) Trainer Owner

Assessment (4) Howard Belvoir Tice Ranch Stables LLC

B R Remark (6) Vince Gibson Mark Witts

Blue Exit (3) Jerry Hollendorfer Jerry Hollendorfer

Call On Carson (4) Dan Markle Cudahy/Sutherland/Schimke-Crist

Cheroot (7) Darrell Vienna Charlotte Wrather

Chhaya Dance (4) Mike Chambers Three Sisters Thoroughbreds

Diligent Prospect (6) Charles Essex K J Star Stable

Don’twritemeoff (6) H.R. Pat Mullens Ron Crockett Inc.

Flamethrowintexan (7) Jim Penney Grasshopper Stable Inc.

Fuhrever Dancing (6) Terry Jordan Bahadur Cheema

Honour the West (4) Jim Penney Michael & Amy Feuerborn

Lord Avalon (4) Mike Chambers Three Sisters Thoroughbreds

Luhuk’s Dancer (5) Ted H. West Jeffrey Sengara

Maxey Boy (4) Mike Chambers Three Sisters Thoroughbreds

Nationhood (6) Mike Chambers Cander Racing

One Union (5) Richard Mandella Herman Sarkowsky

Our Partner (4) Jerry Hollendorfer J. Hollendorfer & G. Todaro

Perfect Drift (9) Richard Mandella Stonecrest Farm

Putmeinyourwill (5) Jerry Hollendofer J. Hollendorfer & G. Todaro

Rosberg (7) Dino Condelinos Swift Thoroughbreds Inc.

Saratoga’s Magic (5) Jerry Hollendorfer Hollendorfer, Morrison & Todaro

Schoolin You (5) Vann Belvoir Ace Racing Stable Inc.

Southern Africa (6) Roy Lumm Al & Saundra Kirkwood

Texas Wildcatter (3) Todd Pletcher Stonerside Stable

Tropic Storm (4) Craig Dollase West Point Thoroughbreds

True Metropolitan (6) Terry Jordan Bahadur Cheema

Wasserman (6) Howard Belvoir Howard Belvoir

Winter Warning (5) Troy Taylor Glen Todd & Patrick Kinsella

Zounds (4) Terry Jordan Bahadur Cheema