‘TDN Rising Star’ Irish War Cry (Curlin), winner of last term’s GII Wood Memorial S. and unraced since finishing eighth in the GI Pennsylvania Derby Sept. 23, continues to gear up for his 4-year-old debut.
The New Jersey-bred, also second in the 2017 GI Belmont S., has breezed twice at Palm Meadows this winter, most recently covering four furlongs in :48.65 (17/83) Jan. 6.
“I’m very happy with him,” trainer Graham Motion said of the Isabelle de Tomaso homebred. “I think he’s grown up and filled out, all the things I hoped for. [Grade III winner] Irish Straight (English Channel), his brother, was a different horse from four to three. He made leaps and bounds, so I’m hoping that might be the case with this guy. He really physically has improved a lot.”
Motion added, “He’s really filled out in his shoulder and his girth and his chest. Fingers crossed we’ll have a good year with him. He’ll probably be ready to start at the end of February, beginning of March. My inclination is to start him at Gulfstream where he’s run well before.”