Flightline Works at Santa Anita, To Ship to Kentucky Sunday

Flightline worked in 1:11.80 Saturday at Santa Anita | Ernie Belmonte

The brilliant and unbeaten MGISW Flightline (Tapit), who figures to be the prohibitive favorite for the GI Longines Breeders' Cup Classic at Keeneland Nov. 5, worked six furlongs in 1:11.80 Saturday morning at Santa Anita prior to a scheduled Sunday flight to Lexington. The work was his fifth consecutive on a Saturday morning dating back to Sept. 24. As per usual, Flightline was accompanied by a pony and ridden by his regular work partner, trainer John Sadler's assistant Juan Leyva, before sunrise. Leyva wears a light on his helmet to help Sadler's team keep sight of the work.

Set down at the five-furlong pole, Flightline clicked off splits of :12 flat, 23.80, 35.80, and 59.80, then galloped out seven furlongs in 1:24.20, a mile in 1:37.20, and nine furlongs in 1:51 flat.

“This was just like his last work at Del Mar (before the Sept. 3 GI Pacific Classic) when he went out a mile in 37 and change, which is what he did today,” said Sadler. “When I talked to Juan this morning, I essentially told him, we're not doing anything different. We're just going to breeze him like he's been breezing, which, sensational is the norm for him.”

Sadler continued, “He's always worked well. More people are watching now, but he's never worked anything other than really well. This was just what we wanted… We can do more or less and just hope he bounces out of it good.”

A triple Grade I winner owned by the partnership of Hronis Racing LLC, Siena Farm LLC, Summer Wind Equine LLC, West Point Thoroughbreds, and Woodford Racing LLC, Flightline is undefeated in five starts and has won each by large margins–a combined 62 3/4 lengths–in a manner which suggests he has much more to give. The 126 Beyer Speed Figure he earned in the Pacific Classic is the best number given a horse since 2004 and his negative 8 1/2 Thoro-Graph number is the fastest ever assigned to a horse.

“He ships tomorrow [Sunday], early, at two in the morning and flies out of Ontario,” said Sadler. “Rene Quinteros will accompany him on the van to Ontario and Cesar Aguilar will meet him in Louisville. He'll then van over to Keeneland tomorrow afternoon.

“He'll have one breeze at Keeneland, one week from today, pending weather. It would be a lesser work, five (furlongs) in a minute is usually what he does… Just kinda cruise around there. His groom, Adolfo Correa, and the other guys will fly back tonight and get there ahead of the horse.”

Flightline is scheduled to stand at Lane's End Farm upon retirement, but connections have not committed to retiring him after the Breeders' Cup. Sadler has alluded to a possible start in the Jan. 28 GI Pegasus World Cup Invitational at Gulfstream as a next target.

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