Work Tab for Tuesday, May 21: Binoculars Focused On Roadster, Hofburg & Others

(Roadster works at Churchill Downs prior to the KY Derby / Photo by Holly M. Smith)

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. Hofburg, a 4YO Tapit colt trained by Bill Mott, has not run since finishing 6th in the G2 Fayette Stakes at Keeneland last October. But he continues to pile up the works in his return efforts. He got his 5th published work since April 18 this morning at Churchill Downs. He went a nice half mile in :47.80 — which was the 3rd best time out of 41 to mark the distance. It was — by far — the most impressive morning performance in his comeback efforts. Should be getting closer now.
  2. Roadster, a 3YO Quality Road colt trained by Bob Baffert, got his first serious tour of duty since running 15th in the KY Derby. It was the first time in 5 career starts that he had not hit the board and snapped his modest 2-race win streak since returning this year from throat surgery. He went an easy half mile in :49.80, which was the 23rd best time out of the 41 to go that far. Don’t know what may be next for him, but interesting that Team Baffert has kept him in KY.
  3. Master Merion, a 5YO Quality Road expert on the grass, toured the lawn at Churchill Downs this morning with two other roommates in the barn of trainer Wesley Ward. This one went 5 furlongs over the grass course in 1:00.60 — which was the fastest of  the 3, along with Undrafted, a 9YO son of Purim. This one ran 4th in the Twin Spires Turf Sprint the last time out. Shang Shang Shang, a 3YO filly and undefeated in 2 career starts, went the same distance a couple of ticks slower. This gal has not started since winning a Group 1 event at Royal Ascot last Summer. Look for all 3 to be close to a race again soon.

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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