C P West – C P West had the morning Monday after working 5f in 1:00 1/5 under Rafael Bejarano at Churchill Downs Sunday. Bejarano, who rode him in his debut victory at Saratoga, has the mount aboard the Nick Zito-trained colt.
Circular Quay – As was the case with 11 of his stablemates who also worked on Sunday, the 2yo Thunder Gulch colt walked the shedrow on Monday. Trained by Todd Pletcher, he went 5f in 1:01 3/5 on Sunday on Belmont Park’s fast training track.
Winner of Saratoga’s Hopeful, he ran second to Great Hunter in Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland on Oct. 7, where he was beaten a length and three-quarters in his first start beyond seven furlongs and his first start on the all-weather Polytrack.
“He got some education in that race, and we learned something about Polytrack, too,” Pletcher said. “There really isn’t a lot to go on, but from the races I’ve seen on Polytrack so far, you want to be back and make one, strong run.”
Pletcher will go with Garrett Gomez aboard Circular Quay, as he hopes to build on a record-shattering year. With the Breeders’ Cup in his crosshairs, Pletcher has already surpassed the 1987 single-season record for stakes wins held by his former mentor, Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas, and already shattered his own single-season earnings mark with $23 million and almost two months remaining.
Got the Last Laugh – With jockey Rene Douglas in the irons, the Distorted Humor colt breezed 5f at Churchill Downs Monday morning in 1:02.
Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott said he was satisfied with work.
“He went good,” Mott said. “He went from the three-eighths to the wire in 36 2/5. It looked like he went well. We were happy with him. He’s never been a big work horse.”
Mott said he wanted to take advantage of the ideal weather conditions Monday to work the colt owned by Zayat Stables. The work had tentatively been scheduled for Tuesday, but with rain in the forecast Mott decided to get the breeze in.
“We moved it up because we knew we would have a good day today,” Mott said.
Douglas rode Got the Last Laugh to a victory in a dead-heat with Officer Rocket in the Arlington-Washington Breeders’ Cup Futurity on Sept. 10 at Arlington Park.
Great Hunter – The 2yo son of Aptitude galloped 1 1/2m this morning at Churchill Downs as he went forward toward Saturday’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile.
Regular exercise rider Antonio Romero was in the irons as the juvenile covered the ground on a crisp, sunny morning in Louisville.
In his final serious move before the race, Great Hunter was clocked in 1:14 2/5 for 6f over Keeneland’s Polytrack on Friday. He moved, with all the other Doug O’Neill Breeders’ Cup trainees, from Keeneland to Churchill Downs on Saturday.
Great Hunter will have Corey Nakatani in the saddle for the Juvenile.
King of the Roxy – King of the Roxy walked the shedrow after working 5f in 1:01 on Sunday on the fast training track at Belmont Park. Edgar Prado picks up the mount on the Littleexpectations colt, who has never raced beyond seven furlongs.
“He’ll have to answer if he can handle distance and two turns,” said trainer Todd Pletcher. “But he came out of the Futurity well and has trained like he wants to go longer.”
Malt Magic – Zayat Stables’ colt walked Monday morning at trainer Bob Baffert’s barn at Santa Anita. Malt Magic worked 6f in 1:11 2/5 Sunday. The son of Cherokee Run is scheduled to be shipped to Churchill Downs on Tuesday.
Pegasus Wind – Robert C. Baker and William Mack’s Pegasus Wind galloped once around the main track at Churchill Downs and then galloped briefly in the mile chute under regular exercise rider Stacy Prior. Mike Luzzi will have the mount in the Juvenile.
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas indicated the major work may be done for Pegasus Wind.
“Everything we have done all summer has pretty much been pointed to this one,” Lukas said. “We feel comfortable where we are at. I think he is doing well enough to be a factor and I am eager to get a two-turn race for him.
“We are pretty much ready. I don’t know that I am going to work. I’m going to breeze through the lane maybe a little bit. I am coming off a one-turn mile at Belmont a few weeks ago and then I did something I normally don’t do; I worked a mile at Churchill Downs, so I don’t really need to do a lot.
“I am more interested now in the mental aspect rather than the physical. I think I’ve got plenty of physical. These babies, when they get in front of a big crowd and the adrenaline gets going, they get into these races, so I want to be sure I’ve got him right mentally. I think the mental in these big races is like three-to-one to the physical.”
Principle Secret – The handsome 2yo colt got his first feel for the Churchill Downs racing strip Monday morning when he went trackside at 8:50 for a 1 ½-mile gallop under exercise rider Jose Valcso. The son of the Storm Cat stallion Sea of Secrets had shipped in from his California base Sunday.
“He’s just going to stretch his legs today,” said Bonnie Paasch, the wife of trainer Christopher Paasch and the lady who flew on the plane with her “favorite horse of all time.”
“He handled the ship well, and so did I,” Bonnie Paasch said. A fine horsewoman in her own right, Paasch has a trainer’s license in Kentucky and an assistant trainer’s license in California. She indicated that Principle Secret would basically gallop up to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, though “he’ll get a strong gallop in the middle of the week – Wednesday or Thursday – where we’ll ask him to finish up strong.”
Bonnie Paasch said she grew up “in the big city” (Billings, Mont., but moved to the country (Laurel, Mont.) and her father got her and her sister horses.
“My sister and I were horse crazy from the start and we used to play games and have dreams about them,” she said. “And all our dreams were about black horses – from the Black Stallion on down. And now here I am living out a dream with Principle Secret. He’s my black horse and he’s my favorite horse of all time.”
Though technically the Kentucky-bred is not black – he’s actually listed as a dark bay or brown – anyone looking at him would be likely to argue that he’s as black a horse as you’re likely to see. And though his white markings – including a prominent star on his forehead – automatically make him ineligible to be called black, you can’t tell that to Bonnie Paasch.
“He’s my black horse and I am blessed to have him,” she stated.
Christopher Paasch, who has been married to Bonnie for six years, will fly in from California Monday and take over training duties Tuesday morning.
Victor Espinoza will ride the Best Pal Stakes winner in the $2 million Juvenile.
Scat Daddy – Scat Daddy worked 5f in 1:01 1/5 on Belmont Park’s fast training track Monday morning. The 2yo son of 2001 Juvenile winner Johannesburg, has won three of four career starts, his last coming in the one-turn mile Champagne at Belmont Park on Oct. 14.
“He’ll love two turns and he’ll love more distance,” said trainer Todd Pletcher, who will ship Scat Daddy with his other Breeders’ Cup-bound horses on Wednesday afternoon. “We have tried to give the young horses and education, and he got a lot out of the Champagne. He’s a good energy level horse who feels good, acts good, and seems sharp. But, like always, I would rather have more time. In a perfect world, we would have another week, but I wanted to keep him and Circular Quay separated, and that was the only way to do it.
“He’s a Grade I winner now, and won a stallion’s race in the Champagne, so it’s good in that regard. Now, they’re both Grade I winners. I think he is going to love going two turns; he’s dying for it. And he’s educated enough, and has been behind horses enough.”
John Velazquez has the mount.
Skip Code – Charles Laloggia’s Skip Code walked the shedrow at Barn 17 a day after working 5f in 1:03 1/5 at Churchill Downs.
Norman Casse, son of trainer Mark Casse, said Skip Code came out of the work in good order and would return to the track in the morning.
The elder Casse is due to return to Louisville from Woodbine tonight and be at the barn Tuesday morning.
Patrick Husbands has the riding assignment Saturday.
Stormello – A somewhat rambunctious Stormello galloped 1 ½ miles this morning at Churchill Downs following his arrival by air on Sunday from his Hollywood Park base.
According to assistant trainer Ignacio “Nacho” Correas, that sort of training isn’t par for Stormello’s course, but Correas said the colt took the travel so well he was ready to go to the track and do something this morning.
So Correas gave exercise rider Mundo Cedeno a leg up on the colt and he moved him effortlessly around the Louisville oval. Cedeno was subbing for the horse’s regular rider, Sandra Murphy, who was caught in a traffic jam caused by a three-car accident on Interstate 64 as she drove to Churchill Downs.
Both Correas and Cedeno expressed enthusiasm for the exercise.
Street Sense – Street Sense galloped about 1 1/8 miles under exercise rider Tracey Wilkes Monday, and trainer Carl Nafzger said he’ll have a “light half” work later in the week, though he declined to say when.
Calvin Borel, who has ridden him in all four of his career starts, will be aboard Street Sense again on Saturday.
Teuflesberg – Trainer Jamie Sanders, a former exercise rider for Nick Zito, was back in the saddle Monday for a 1 ½ m gallop aboard the colt that will be her first Breeders’ Cup starter as a trainer.
She plans to give him a blowout Wednesday and will school him in the paddock every day. “That’s one of the quirks he has,” she said, explaining that she did that before his last race, when he went out and broke his maiden in a Keeneland maiden special weight Oct. 22.
One of his other quirks is that he thrives on a lot of racing, Sanders said. The Breeders’ Cup will be his ninth start, a lot for a 2yo.
“He’s unlike any horse I’ve ever had,” she said. “He lives to train and he lives to run. That’s all he thinks about.” If he doesn’t race often enough, she explained, “he’ll start stall-walking. He frets and frets.”
U D Ghetto – Lucky Seven Stable’s U D Ghetto walked the shedrow at Barn 48 for the second consecutive day after working 5f in 1:01 on Saturday for trainer Tony Reinstedler.
“He will go back to the track in the morning,” said Reinstedler, a Louisville native who will be saddling his first Breeders’ Cup starter.
Corey Lanerie was aboard for the work, which was the second-fastest of 16 at the distance on Saturday. Mike Smith will pilot U D Ghetto in the Breeders’ Cup.
Reinstedler was asked when he knew how good the son of Honour and Glory was.
“When he won the Kentucky Cup Juvenile,” Reinstedler said with a laugh. “He had run in an A-other than at Turfway and I thought he got tired going a mile. I thought I’d take a shot back (in the Kentucky Cup Juvenile). He’s always had the talent, it was just a question of how much class.”
Zanjero – The Cherokee Run colt, which sits first on the preference list, had his final preparation on Monday, breezing 4f in 50 1/5, according to trainer Scott Blasi.
“It was a nice even work,” said Blasi. “Just what we wanted. He doesn’t need much because with the two-turn race at Keeneland under him, he’s done plenty.”
Shaun Bridgmohan has the mount.