Every day, we scour the work tabs at racetracks all over North America to find horses that are preparing for their next race in the afternoon. Some of the horses we watch and report, you will know.  Some of them, you may not — yet.  The purpose is to keep you updated on who may be working well in the mornings and preparing for a big race in the afternoons.  Here is a closer look at today’s works:

  1. Totality, is a 3YO colt by Tapit who is owned the Winchell Family and trained by Steve Asmussen. After breaking his maiden at Churchill Downs last fall and running second in the Remington Springboard Mile Stakes as a 2YO, this one was expected to have a big year.  It has not materialized.  He has been missing from action since a dull fifth at Churchill in June, but he seems to be training quite nicely for his return.  He went 5Fs in 1:00.20 on the dirt surface at Churchill on Sunday, which was 4th best out of 47 to go the distance. Untapped came back to impress after a layup at Churchill with assistant Scott Blasi.  Don’t be surprised if this one comes back in similar fashion. Watch out.
  2. Practical Joke, who has been a model of consistency in a rather topsy turfy year for 3YO colts, was back on the track at Belmont Park on Saturday, working 4Fs in :48.25 for trainer Chad Brown.  The winner of the H. Allen Jerkens Stakes (formerly the King’s Bishop) in his last start posted the 10th best time out of 64 to go that far on the dirt track.  This one may train up to either the Breeders’ Cup Mile or another one of the championship races.  And, if he wins, he may be considered along with West Coast, the impressive winner of the Pennsylvania Derby, as the top 3YO colt in the country this year.
  3. Literary Critic, a well-bred 3YO filly by City Zip and out of the Storm Cat mare Ain’t She Sweet, worked 5Fs at the San Luis Rey Training Center on Saturday for trainer Clifford Sise.  She covered the distance in  a brisk :59.80, which was the 4th best time out of 42 to go over the dirt track.  This talented filly broke her maiden in her last out at Del Mar in her second career start, leading wire-to-wire in a 11/16-mile turf event.  Keep an eye out for this one’s return.  She looks to be a nice one for owners Pam and Martin Wygod.
  4. Paradise Woods, this year’s favorite to win the Kentucky Oaks, was at home at Santa Anita while some of the best 3YO fillies from the West Coast were dominating the Cotillion Stakes at Parx. But that didn’t mean she was getting a vacation.  The talented filly breezed 6Fs for trainer Richard Mandella in 1:11.80 handily and that was the bullet work out of 32 to go the distance on the dirt track.  This one had a tough start in the Torrey Pines Stakes at Del Mar in her first race since the disappointing Oaks, but she has a ton of speed and may be ready to rock in her next out.  Don’t give up on this one.
  5. Cowboy Culture, a 3YO colt trained by Brad Cox, may be one of the best kept secrets in all of racing.  All this one does is win. In 7 lifetime starts, this son of Quality Road has 5 victories — including 2 stakes in a row.  He won the G3 American Classic at Arlington Park and the Centaur Stakes at Indiana Grand in the last two.  This turf specialist went 4Fs on the dirt at Churchill Downs Saturday morning in :49 flat, which was good enough to be 45th out of 111. Maintenance move. Watch out for this one soon.