Work Tab for Wednesday, May 29: Binoculars Focused On Master Fencer, Roadster & Others

(Master Fencer before this year’s 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. Master Fencer, the 3YO Japan-bred son of Just a Way and 6th-place finisher in this year’s KY Derby, worked at Belmont Park early this morning. The colt — who has 2 wins and 2 seconds in his native country before being shipped to the States — went a very nice 5 furlongs in 1:01.48. That was the bullet move early in today’s proceedings. This one looks to be getting more and more comfortable the longer that he stays in N.A. Don’t be shocked at his run in the Belmont Stakes. Improvement to come.
  2. Recruiting Ready, a 5YO son of Algorithms and trained by Stanley Hough for the Sagamore Farms, worked on Tuesday at Churchill Downs. This guy — who won the G3 Gulfstream Park Sprint Stakes this March — is coming off a second in the Runhappy Stakes at Belmont Park on May 11. Looks to be really, really good right now. In 20 lifetime starts, he has a 7-3-4 mark and earnings over $622,000. With any luck at all, this guy could end up a racing millionaire. He breezed a very nice half mile in :47.20 — which was 2nd best out of 26 to go that distance.
  3. Winter Sunset, a brilliant 3YO daughter of Tapit and out of the wonderful race mare Winter Memories, worked at Churchill Downs on Tuesday, as well. What a busy Spring for this gal, so far. Broke the maiden and then won a listed Stakes at the Fair Grounds in February. Came back to run a nice third in the G3 Florida Oaks, and, most recently, got up to be third in the G3 Edgewood Stakes at Churchill Downs. Wonderful talent. Breezed 5 furlongs over the sod on Tuesday, covering the distance in 1:01.60. That was the bullet move out of 4 to cover the distance.
  4. Midnight Bisou, winner of 8 of 14 races in her brilliant career, worked at Churchill Downs on Tuesday for trainer Steve Asmussen. The 4YO daughter of Midnight Lute is a perfect 3-for-3 this year with wins in three Graded Stakes events, went 5 furlongs in a brisk :59.80. That was the 9th best time out of 21 to go the distance. This may be the best older mare in the country right now.
  5. Roadster, the 3YO Quality Road colt who ran a disappointing 15th in this year’s KY Derby, has stayed behind in Kentucky for Team Baffert. Worked at Churchill Downs on Tuesday, too, going 5 furlongs in :59.60 — which was 5th best of the 21. Picked it up in his second published work since the Derby. Be interesting to see where he is spotted next. The only time he has missed hitting the board in the first 5 career starts was in the KY Derby. Better things to come for this guy.

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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