Work Tab for Sunday, Dec. 23 / Binoculars Focused On Philosophy, Nitrous, Telekinesis, War of Will & the Impressive Tight Ten

(Tight Ten winning at Churchill Downs earlier this year. He may be a top contender for the Lecomte Stakes at the Fair Grounds in 2019. Photo Courtesy of Churchill Downs)

Every day, we scour the work tabs at racetracks all over the country.  We are looking for workouts that may be of interest and helpful to you — as both race fans and handicappers.  Some of the horses we will be tracking, you will know.  Some of them, you may not know — as of yet.  We will keep a keen eye and stopwatch to see who may be working well:

  1. Guacamole, a 2YO filly by Flat Out and trained by Todd Pletcher, won on debut at Saratoga on July 26 and came right back to run a nice third in the G2 Adirondack Stakes at “The Spa” in August. Since, she has not fared as well, but did have a nice work at Belmont Park this morning. She went a half-mile over the dirt training track there in :48.75 — which was the 32nd best time out of 89 to go that far this morning. Worth watching this one to see if she can recapture her previous glory.
  2. Cool Beans, a 3YO Candy Ride filly trained by Brad Cox, worked this morning at the Fair Grounds in New Orleans. This one is coming off back-to-back third place finishes in the G3 Pin Oak Valley View at Keeneland and the G2 Mrs. Revere Stakes at Churchill Downs. In 8 lifetime starts now, she has a 2-3-3 record. Not bad. This a.m., she worked very well, going a half mile in :47.60 — which was the third best time out of 84 to go that distance. This one is already entered for the Pago Hop Stakes at the Fair Grounds this coming Saturday — Dec. 29.
  3. Limari, a 3YO Medaglia d’Oro filly trained by Cox, worked this morning at the Fair Grounds, as well. This well-bred home-bred broke her maiden last time out at the Fair Grounds on Nov. 29. In three career starts now, she has a win and a second. This morning, she went a half mile in :49 flat. That was the 15th best time of the day.
  4. Philosophy, a 2YO son of Speightstown and trained by Mark Casse, was super impressive in his MSW victory over the grass at the Fair Grounds in his last start on Dec. 6. Ran away from that crowd over this sod, and he came back today for his first published work since the trip to the winner’s circle. He went a half in :48.40 — which was the 4th best time out of the 84. Looks really sharp right now.
  5. Upset Brewing, a 3YO Justin Phillip filly trained by Buff Bradley, was super impressive in running off to a nice allowance win last time out at the Fair Grounds on Dec. 9. That was the 2nd win in 17 career starts for the filly, who is already a multiple Graded Stakes-placed winner. She went an easy half this morning in :51 flat. That was 62nd out of the 84. Pure maintenance move. Sharp right now, and may be able to wheel right back in New Orleans. Bears watching.
  6. Nitrous, a 2YO son of Tapit and trained by Steve Asmussen for the tandem of Winchell Thoroughbreds and Stonestreet Stables, got his fifth published work since his last race this morning. He went 5 furlongs in 1:02.20. That was 22nd out of 50 to go that far over the dirt track at the Fair Grounds. This one ran third in the G1 Hopeful Stakes at Saratoga back in September. Can toss the grass try. Look for this one to improve with age and experience. Talented. For. Sure.
  7. Telekinesis, runner-up to My Boy Jack in the G3 Lexington Stakes before  winning the Plate Trial Stakes earlier this year, worked for trainer Mark Casse at the Fair Grounds this Sunday morning. This 3YO son of Ghostzapper went 5 furlongs in 1:00 flat — which was the bullet move out of the 50. This speedster can run and this was the fifth published work since he ran 6th in the Runhappy H. Allen Jerkens Stakes at Saratoga in late August. Watch for his return soon.
  8. Tight Ten, a 2YO son of Tapit and another trained by Asmussen for Winchell Thoroughbreds, worked this morning at the Fair Grounds, as well. This one — who has a win and two seconds in the first 4 starts — went 5 furlongs in an impressive 1:01.20. That was the 9th best time out the 50. The only time this one missed the scoring board was when he ran 9th in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. But he has the look of a youngster that may resurface in the Lecomte Stakes in New Orleans soon. Watch out for this one. Talented.
  9. War of Will, a 2YO son of War Front and trained by Mark Casse, may have gotten his light-bulb moment at Churchill Downs on Nov. 24, when he won to break his maiden. Before that, he did run 5th in the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf; 4th in the G3 Bourbon Stakes at Keeneland; and 2nd in the G1 Summer Stakes at Woodbine. This one worked 5 furlongs in 1:00.20. That was the 2nd best time out of the 50. This one sold for $298,550 as a 2YO earlier this year in the Arqana May Sale. Watch out here.

The horse broke well today,” Gaffalione said. “I had the horse inside, Dunph, going to the lead and then (Gun It) showed a little bit of speed. When I saw they were intent on going I just tried to get him back and got him to relax. He came back to me nicely and settled well down the backside. Got a little keen going into the far turn and wanted to move a little early. But I didn’t want to take too much away from him so I tried to sit as long as I could. He was waiting on horses down the lane but I kept him at task and there was plenty of horse there.”

“Mark (Casse, the trainer) and his team have done a great job,” Gaffalione said. “They’ve had a ton of confidence in this horse the whole way. It’s just an honor to be able to ride the horse. He’s just so professional, trains great and he’s a pleasure to be around.”

Tyler Gaffalione, Rode of War of Will to victory in the G2 Risen Star Stakes at the Fair Grounds
  • Gene McLean

    Gene McLean

    Gene McLean began his professional career in 1977 as a sportswriter and columnist for the Lexington Herald-Leader in Lexington, Ky., and was recognized as one of the state’s best writers, winning the prestigious “Sportswriter of the Year” honor in 1985. Now the President and Publisher of The Pressbox, McLean sets ...

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