C R K Stable’s Royal Act (American Pharoah), a gritty second to undefeated Thousand Words (Pioneerof the Nile) in the GIII Robert B. Lewis S. Feb. 1 and fellow Lee Searing colorbearer Honor A. P. (Honor Code), an exceptionally impressive maiden winner when last seen over a mile last October, were each out for Saturday morning breezes over the Santa Anita main track.
A $500,000 Keeneland September yearling purchase, Royal Act was making his dirt debut in the Lewis and sat a very wide trip, but plugged on gamely to drop a 3/4-length decision. The bay went five-eighths of a mile in 1:01.20 (15/58) Saturday morning.
“This was his first work since the Lewis, so he’ll let us know (where and when to run next),” trainer Peter Eurton said. “We’ll have him nominated everywhere so we have several options. The more distance the better for him.”
Options include the GII TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby Mar. 21, the GI Curlin Florida Derby Mar. 28 and the GI Santa Anita Derby Apr. 4.
Honor A. P. was a from-the-clouds second to recent GII San Vicente S. runner-up Ginobili (Munnings) on his six-furlong debut at Del Mar Aug. 17 and made many sit up and take notice with a 5 1/4-length graduation when stretched to a route of ground at Santa Anita Oct. 10. The $850,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga yearling tuned up for his much-anticipated sophomore debut with a stamina-building seven-furlong move that was clocked in 1:27 Saturday morning (XBTV video).