March 19, 2019

Catalina Cruiser drills for Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile

Catalina Cruiser and jockey Drayden Van Dyke win the Pat O'Brien Stakes (G2) on August 25, 2018, at Del Mar © BENOIT PHOTO

Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1) threat Catalina Cruiser toured seven furlongs in 1:26.60 at Santa Anita Sunday. The only worker at that distance on the day, the unbeaten John Sadler colt posted splits of :25.40, :37.60, :49.40, 1:01.80 and 1:14 according to track clockers.

City of Light, possible for the Classic (G1) but liable to stick to the Dirt Mile, fired a five-furlong bullet in :59.00 over the same track Saturday. The Mike McCarthy trainee registered the fastest of 40 moves at the trip.

Promises Fulfilled breezed a half-mile in :48 at Churchill Downs on October 20, 2018 (c) Churchill Downs/Coady Photography

Promises Fulfilled, likelier for the TwinSpires Sprint (G1) than the Dirt Mile, sped a half-mile in :48 at Churchill Saturday. After quick fractions of :11.60 and :35.60, the Dale Romans sophomore galloped out five furlongs in 1:00.60.

“It was a great work after his last start,” Romans said of this first move since his Phoenix S. (G2) score. “We’re going to pre-enter both the Sprint and Dirt Mile but I’d lean to run him in the Sprint. We still have a shot to be Sprint champion with this horse and, even if we won the Dirt Mile, we may not be champion.”

Whitmore, also to be cross-entered to the Sprint and Dirt Mile, drilled a bullet half in :47 at Churchill Friday with stablemate Petrov. The Ron Moquett speedster posted splits of :11.60, :23 and :35 and galloping out five furlongs in 1:00.60.

“He’s a happy horse right now,” Moquett said. “It was a great breeze. He’s a naturally fast horse. Sometimes he can be tough to breeze because he can go that fast at the push of a button but when we try to get something easy into him it’s sometimes tough to hold him back.”

Limousine Liberal breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 at Keeneland on October 20, 2018 (c) Keeneland/Coady Photography

Another likely Sprint/Dirt Mile cross-entrant, Limousine Liberal, strode five furlongs in 1:00.40 on Saturday at Keeneland, quickening through a final quarter in :22.40.

“It got a little messed up at the start,” trainer Ben Colebrook said of two other horses going in front, “but he finished good. It’s fine.”

Turning to a few notable Filly & Mare Sprint (G1) workers, undefeated Dream Tree sizzled five-eighths in a bullet :58.80 from the Santa Anita gate, best of 43 at the distance on Friday.

Skye Diamonds went four panels in :48:20 Saturday over Santa Anita’s training track with Tiago Pereira.

“She’ll work again next Saturday, then ship Tuesday to Kentucky,” trainer Bill Spawr said.

Comebacker Selcourt exercised six furlongs in 1:13.80 Sunday, also at Santa Anita.

Churchill horse-for-the-course Finley’sluckycharm turned five furlongs in 1:00.20 Thursday beneath the Twin Spires.

Also at Churchill, Golden Mischief strode a half-mile Saturday in :50.60 on a good main track. Her Turf Sprint (G1)-bound stablemate Will Call stretched his legs too, clocking :49.80.

“It was just easy works for them since they just ran,” trainer Brad Cox said. “Golden Mischief is still targeting the Filly & Mare Sprint and Will Call could be pretty tough in the Turf Sprint. I didn’t want to do too much with them this morning so they went easy but looked good doing so.”

Bucchero breezed four furlongs in :48.60 at Churchill Downs on October 20, 2018 (c) Churchill Downs/Coady Photography

Turf Sprint contender Bucchero covered a half-mile the same day in :48.60, carving out splits of :12.20, :24.40 and :36.60 and galloping out five in 1:02.

“I was very pleased with how he worked this morning,” trainer Tim Glyshaw said. “It’ll be exciting running him out of his own backyard on Breeders’ Cup Day.”