Work Tab for Sunday, Jan. 20: Binoculars Focused On Cathedral Reader, Seeking the Soul & Seek N Justice

(Our very own Holly M. Smith — one of the greatest equine photographers in the land — caught up with Seek N Justice at the Fair Grounds this week)

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. Cathedral Reader, a very nice 4YO Shackleford filly trained by Dallas Stewart, now has 3 wins, a second and a third in 7 career starts and is coming off a 7th place finish in the G1 LaBrea Stakes on Dec. 26 at Santa Anita. She is back “home” in New Orleans now, though, and got her third published work since the California debacle. She went a half mile at the Fair Grounds on Saturday in :48.60 — which was 9th best of 89 to go the distance. Worth watching for her return. Classy one for sure.
  2. Seeking a Star, a 3YO Pioneerof the Nile filly trained by Mark Casse, has only 1 second in the first 4 career starts, but is entered for Jan. 25 at the Fair Grounds and she may be an interesting one to watch. She was second two starts back to Drinking Dixie — a nice Quality Road filly, in her own right — at Churchill Downs when running long on the turf. The last time out, when running at the Fair Grounds, the race was switched from the turf to the main track, and after setting the early fractions, she spit the bit. Now, she will drop drop back to a 5.5-furlong sprint over the sod. Drew the #12 hole and that doesn’t help, but she could be tough if she springs from the gate running. Worked a half on Saturday in :48.20 — which was the bullet move out of the 89 to go that far.
  3. Dream Maker, a 3YO son of Tapit and trained by Casse, has been moved to the Fair Grounds from the farm training center in Florida, and he worked in New Orleans on Saturday. Went 5 furlongs in 1:00 flat, and that was the 3rd fastest time out of 41 to go that far. This one was very impressive winning the debut race last year and then had difficulties in both the G1 Hopeful Stakes and the G1 Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity. Watch for a quick return soon. Could be a good one.
  4. Seeking the Soul, winner of over $1.7 million in his brilliant career to date and runner-up in the Breeders’ Cup Mile two starts back for trainer Dallas Stewart, trained at the Fair Grounds on Saturday. Went 5 furlongs in a meaningful :59.80, which was the 2nd best time out of the 41. Ran 5th in the Pegasus World Cup a year ago to the great Gun Runner. Should be in the field this year, if they want a runner.
  5. Seek N Justice, our very own 3YO colt by Caleb’s Posse, worked this morning at the Fair Grounds for trainer Buff Bradley. And, then we entered for a MCL event next Sunday in New Orleans. I bred this colt, who is out of Diamond Seeker. She ran at the Fair Grounds and looked to be a genuine runner before she busted a knee up and had to be retired. In her career debut, she ran fifth to Chanteline, but was beaten only about 4 lengths. Chanteline is now a 7YO mare, but is a Graded Stakes winner — having captured the G3 Buffalo Trace Franklin County Stakes at Keeneland last October. She ran 6th in the Breeders’ Cup Turf Spring at Churchill Downs in November. Wish us some luck. Always need it in this game.

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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