Workouts That Could Work Out For You: Today’s Focus On Code of Honor, Whitmore, Thunder Snow, Mind Your Biscuits & Other BC Contenders

(Mind Your Biscuits winning at Churchill Downs / 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. Code of Honor, a talented 2YO son of Noble Mission and runner-up in the G1 Champagne Stakes last time out despite going to his knees leaving the gate, worked in preparation for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile this morning at Belmont Park. The colt, trained by Shug McGaughey for owner W.S. Farish, went 5 furlongs in 1:00.71. That was the bullet breeze out of the first 8 to record a time this morning. This one now has a win and a second in two career starts, and that is saying something for this barn — who always takes its’ time with youngsters. Special one here? Next week will tell.
  2. Qurbaan, a 5YO horse by Speightstown who won the G2 Bernard Baruch Handicap two starts back and then ran third in the G1 Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland, worked this morning in preparation for the BC Mile. This one, who now has a record of 6-1-3 in 15 career starts for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin and owner Shadwell Stable, went 5 furlongs on the dirt track at Belmont in a time of 1:01.84. That was the third fastest time out of the first 8 to go. Only raced twice this year. A win and a third. Watch out.
  3. Seeking the Soul, a 5YO son of Perfect Soul and a contender for the BC Classic, worked at Churchill Downs this morning. The 6-time winner, trained by Dallas Stewart for Charles Fipke, went a half mile in :47.60 — which was the 3rd fastest time out of 20 to make the distance. In his last two starts at Churchill Downs, Seeking the Soul has a win in the G3 Ack Ack Stakes on Sept. 29 and a win in the G1 Clark Handicap on Nov. 24, 2017. Horse for this course? Of course.
  4. Whitmore, a prime contender for this year’s BC Sprint for trainer Ron Moquett, worked a nice half mile in a blistering :46.20 this morning at Churchill Downs. That was the bullet move of the day, and one of the most eye-popping performances here in quite some time.  This son of Pleasantly Perfect has put up an impressive record of 11-6-2 in 23 lifetime starts, and has earned over $2 million in purses. Despite the fact that he broke his maiden at Churchill Downs on Nov. 6, 2015, he has not done his best racing over this track in the past. He ran 19th in the 2016 KY Derby. He ran fourth in the G2 Churchill Downs Stakes here on KY Derby Day this year. What to make of that?
  5. Mind Your Biscuits, another contender for this year’s BC Classic and trained by the young and personable Chad Summers, worked under the Twin Spires today, too. The 5YO Posse horse went 5 furlongs in 1:03.20. That was the 35th best time out of 36 in a pure maintenance move. The NY-bred will be making his last career start in the BC Classic before heading off to stud duty, but the trainer has done a magnificent job in converting this one from one of the world’s best and most talented sprinters into a real contender for the Classic at 11/4 miles. Amazing job, young man.
  6. Mr. Money, a 2YO son of Goldencents and a contender for the BC Juvenile, worked this morning for trainer W. Bret Calhoun. This one breezed 5 furlongs in :59.60 — which was the bullet move of the day out of 36 to go the distance. Wow time. And, despite the low publicity, I think this one has a shot to upset the apple cart a bit at a huge number. He has a win and 2 seconds in three career starts to date, but he really moved well over this track in winning on Sept. 28 and again this a.m. Whether it be in the BC Juvenile or another spot, this one has some real talent. And, bears watching in the future.
  7. Thunder Snow, who will return to Churchill Downs and the place of his most notable blunder in the 2017 KY Derby for this year’s BC Classic, worked 7 furlongs at Churchill Downs on Friday morn. He went the distance in 1:27 flat, which was the only time for that distance. This one, trained by Saeed bin Suroor for Godolphin Racing, ran a nice second in the G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup in his last out. But is he ready for his return? We shall see.

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 ...

    Full Bio >

More From Gene McLean