Updated with Quotes/Workouts That May Work Out For You: Today’s Focus On Lone Sailor, Whitmore, Mind Your Biscuits, Promises Fulfilled, Diversity

3-24-2018 – Noble Indy with John Velazquez aboard gets a head in front of Lone Sailor to win the 105th Grade II Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds. Hodges Photography / Lou Hodges, Jr.

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. Lone Sailor, one of the most enduring horses this Spring and Summer along the Triple Crown trail, worked at Churchill Downs this morning for trainer Tom Amoss. The 3YO Majestic Warrior colt went a nice half-mile over the dirt track in :48.40. That was the 5th best time out of 69 to go the distance today. In 8 starts this year, Lone Sailor has not won yet. But he has 4 seconds and a third against some of the best in the land. He is coming off a hard-fought second in the G3 Super Derby at Louisiana Downs, and was third in the G1 Haskell to Good Magic the time before that. What a nice horse. According to his trainer, Lone Sailor “went well,” and will now be pointed to the Remington Park Derby next weekend.
  2. Valadorna, a 4YO Curlin filly who ran a huge second in the KY Downs Ladies Turf Stakes in her grass debut last time out, worked this morning at Churchill Downs, as well. The filly went an easy half mile in :48 flat, which was the third best time out of the 69 to go. This one won the G3 Doubledogdare Stakes at Keeneland this April, and now has placed in Graded events on both the dirt and grass. She could get even better on the sod next time out, too. Watch for her return.
  3. Whitmore, a 5YO Pleasantly Perfect colt who ran a huge one to win the G1 Forego Stakes at Saratoga last time out for trainer Ron Moquett, has made six starts this year. He has 3 wins and 2 seconds, and is having a super season. This morning, he worked at Churchill Downs — going a half mile in a leisurely :49.20. that was the 31st best time of the day. Certainly, this one looks like he is a prime candidate for this year’s Breeders’ Cup Sprint. He broke his maiden under the Twin Spires way back in 2015, and despite a 19th in the Kentucky Derby the following Spring, he has cut back and made a tremendous sprinter.
  4. Mind Your Biscuits, another who could be considered a great sprinter, worked this morning under the Twin Spires. The 5YO NY-bred went 5 furlongs inn 1:02 flat. That was the 15th best time out of the 23. This year, trainer Chad Summers has done a masterful job of stretching this one out in distance, and the horse has proven that he is much more than one dimensional. He ran a huge second in the G1 Met Mile and then was second in the G1 Whitney. Mind Your Biscuits has now earned well over $4 million in purses, and before he is done, he could go down in history as the best NY-bred ever. Love watching this guy run, and close. Heart as big as Manhattan.
  5. Mr. Ankeny, a promising 2YO son of Into Mischief, is coming off a nice win in his last race at Ellis Park on Sept. 2. Before that, he resisted a second and a third for trainer Dale Romans. This morning, the colt breezed 5 furlongs in 1:00.20. That was the second fastest time out the 23 to go. Watch for this one to bounce back soon. He could be a force in some major Stakes events soon.
  6. Promises Fulfilled, who may be the best sprinter in the world right now, worked this morning for Romans, as well. the son of Shackledford went 5 furlongs in a brilliant :59.60. That was the bullet move of the day, and proof positive that this one continues to be razor sharp. In the last two starts, this 3YO has won both the G3 Amsterdam and the G1 H. Allen Jerkens. He must move up to face older ones soon, but he looks up to it. Ultra fast.
  7. On Leave, a 5YO War Front mare trained by Shug McGaughey, worked this morning at Belmont Park. The mare went 3 furlongs over the dirt track in :36.93, which was the bullet move of 11. This one has put together an impressive resume. In 19 career starts, she has 8 wins, 4 seconds and 3 thirds, and has earned over $1 million in purses for owner Stuart S. Janney III. Gives her all every time.
  8. Diversify, another talented NY-bred, worked this morning at Belmont Park. This one, who has earned nearly $2 million in purses, worked 5 furlongs in a spiffy :58.97 — which was the impressive work of the day and bullet move, without a doubt. The son of Bellamy Road has strung together three straight wins again for trainer Richard Violette, the last two coming in the G2 Suburban and the G1 Whitney. Top drawer.

What a stretch drive. My hats off to Analyze It, he ran super. It was a hell of a horse race. He really has an awful lot of heart. I didn’t expect him to fight back this time. I thought we were going to finish a really good second, somehow he got it done. He’s always been a real generous training horse. You never know how they will respond in that scenario because we never put them in that situation in the mornings. Between his heart and Javier’s ride what can you say? We had no instructions before the race. We just wanted him to ride him by gut instinct and do what he thought was best.”

Jonathan Thomas, Trainer of the winner Catholic Boy and winner of his first Grade 1 Stakes
  • 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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