Breeders’ Cup Bulletin: Thursday, Oct. 25

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Oscar Performance | Coady

MGISW Oscar Performance (Kitten’s Joy) put in his final serious work for the GI Breeders’ Cup Mile Thursday at Keeneland with regular jockey Jose Ortiz in the irons. Starting a length behind stablemate Silver Ride (Candy Ride {Arg}), the ‘TDN Rising Star’ breezed five panels in 1:01.40 (4/17), covering his final quarter in :24 flat and galloping out six furlongs in 1:14 (video). “It was the work we needed going into the race,” conditioner Brian Lynch said of his 2016 GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf winner. “The gallop out and the whole work was a good work. He might have a little blowout at Churchill but nothing serious. This is what he needed, and Jose was thrilled with the work.”

GI Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies contender Restless Rider (Distorted Humor) breezed in company with Princesa Carolina (Tapit) at Keeneland Thursday. Grade I-winning ‘TDN Rising Star’ Restless Rider finished a length in front, clocking a half-mile in :48.40 (10/56), while her stablemate was clocked in :48.60 (15/56) (video). The pair were timed in splits of :11.80, :23.60 and :36 and galloped out in 1:00.80. “We just wanted to let [Restless Rider] stretch her legs again,” trainer Ken McPeek said. “She was coming back six days off her last breeze.” Princesa Carolina was pre-entered in the Juvenile Fillies Turf, but was not selected into the field. McPeek said she might run in Sunday’s Rags to Riches S. at Churchill Downs.

GII Jessamine S. winner Concrete Rose (Twirling Candy) turned in what trainer Rusty Arnold deemed a “perfect” work in her final preparations for the Juvenile Fillies Turf Thursday morning at Keeneland. Working in company with stablemate Macabre (Hard Spun) to her inside, the dark bay breezed a half-mile in :49 flat (22/56) with splits of :12.40, :24.40 and :36.60.

Juvenile Turf contender War of Will (War Front) and Juvenile Turf Sprint hopeful Strike Silver (Violence) breezed together Thursday, going a half-mile in :48.20 (7/56) at Keeneland (video). The Mark Casse pupils were clocked in fractions of :12.40, :24, :35.80 and :48.20 and galloped out in 1:00.80. “Very happy with them,” David Carroll, Casse’s Keeneland assistant, said. “Great surface here and nice, quiet track. Hopefully it’ll be a winning breeze.”

GSW and GI Preakness S. runner-up Bravazo (Awesome Again) hit the track at Churchill Downs bright and early Thursday in true D. Wayne Lukas fashion, working a best-of-20 five-panel bullet in :59.80. Breezing in company with Spire (Ghostzapper) (1:02), the Calumet Farm runner registered splits of :11.60, :23, :35 and :47 with a six-furlong gallop out in 1:15.60. “This horse has done nothing but improve following the [GI Kentucky] Derby,” Lukas said. “The last race wasn’t too much but this colt has danced in every dance and shows up each time. There’s not much more you can ask of him but I wish we could’ve gotten a little luckier in a couple of his starts.” The Hall of Famer pre-entered Bravazo as first preference for the GI Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile and second preference for the GI Breeders’ Cup Classic. The sophomore is one spot out of the Classic starting gate at No. 15.

GI Breeders’ Cup F/M Sprint runner Finley’sluckycharm (Twirling Candy) covered a half-mile in :47.80 (2/37) beneath the Twin Spires Thursday morning. With jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr., in the irons, the GI Madison S. victress clicked off fractions of :12, :24, 36 and :47.80 before galloping out five panels in 1:00.40. “That was her last work before the Breeders’ Cup,” said trainer Bret Calhoun. “I am happy to get that behind us.” “I feel better coming into this year’s Breeders’ Cup,” he said of Finley’sluckycharm, who finished ninth in last year’s running at Del Mar. “She had a long campaign last year and had lost some weight. This year we have spaced her races out more and she has actually gained weight.”

Tom Amoss sent out his Breeders’ Cup hopefuls Lone Sailor (Majestic Warrior) (Classic {1st}/Dirt Mile) and Serengeti Empress (Alternation) (Juvenile Fillies) for their final works in Louisville Thursday with both horses going a half-mile in :48.20 (8/37) under exercise rider Gilbert Concha. GIII Oklahoma Derby victor Lone Sailor was up first, clocking splits of :12.20 and :24.20 with a six-furlong gallop out in 1:14.60. “He had been running all year and today’s work nine days out from the race was by design for maintenance mentally and physically,” Amoss said. “He had done a lot of work previously.” Runaway GII Pocahontas S. winner Serengeti Empress registered splits of :12.60, :24.20 and :36.40, galloping out six furlongs in 1:14.20. “Her work was similar to his, just an easy half,” Amoss said. “Her preparation has been different from his. She worked in company last week and has done a lot more than Lone Sailor has. The takeaway from this morning was she rated kindly like she did last week in company. I know it is not a full field, but I think post position will be important. With Bellafina (Quality Road), Jaywalk (Cross Traffic), Restless Rider and us; something has to give and I want to know that she can rate.”

GI Breeders’ Cup Distaff contender Wonder Gadot (Medaglia d’Oro) and Dirt Mile runner Awesome Slew (Awesome Again) put in their final half-mile works at Churchill Thursday. ‘TDN Rising Star’ and Queen’s Plate victress Wonder Gadot covered the distance in a bullet :47 flat, the best of 37 breezers at the distance, going in fractions of :11.60 and :22.80 with a five-panel gallop-out on 1:01. Awesome Slew worked outside of stablemate Determinant (Tapit) (:48.40), completing the work in :48 flat (3/37) with splits of :12.20 and :24 and a five-furlong gallop-out in 1:01. “Both horses worked great this morning,” said trainer Mark Casse as he personally walked GI Kentucky Oaks runner-up Wonder Gadot around his Barn 36 shedrow. “We’re ready to go.” He added, “It’s interesting with Wonder Gadot’s pedigree how well she takes to this track. I think she absolutely loves this surface.”

Likely Juvenile Fillies favorite Bellafina (Quality Road) breezed four furlongs in :47.40 (2/21) at Santa Anita Thursday morning (video). “It was really good,” trainer Simon Callaghan said of his dual Grade I winner. “She galloped out in a minute and change and she looked like she wanted to keep going, so it was just what we were looking for. She will leave [for Kentucky] early [Friday] morning and we’ll just gallop her into the race. She’ll paddock school and go to the gate one of the days. She’s fit; she’s ready.”

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