Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Madaket Stables’ GI Ashland S. victress Speech (Mr Speaker)–third in the TDN Kentucky Oaks Top 10–drilled a half-mile in :47.60 (XBTV video) beneath exercise rider Osman Cedeno over the Churchill Downs main track Friday morning, her final major work ahead of the GI Longines Kentucky Oaks Sept. 4.
Working by her lonesome in the 7:30-7:45 a.m. window reserved for Kentucky Derby and Oaks horses, the Mike McCarthy trainee galloped through an opening quarter-mile in :24 flat and pulled up five furlongs in 1:00.20. It was the eighth-fastest of 94 half-mile breezes.
“She’s a very spirited horse and she got over the track well,” McCarthy said. “She always keeps herself plenty fit.”
Trainer Brad Cox sent out his two Oaks hopefuls in separate workouts Friday morning.
Juddmonte Farms’ Bonny South (Munnings, #5), the distant runner-up to likely second choice Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil) in the GI Alabama S. at Saratoga Aug. 15, went a half-mile in :48.20 (XBTV video) inside of her GIII Indiana Derby-winning stablemate Shared Sense (Street Sense). She was caught in splits of :12.20 and :24 and galloped out five panels in 1:01.40.
“I thought it was a really strong work,” said Shaun Bridgmohan, who put Bonny South through her paces. “Shared Sense is a nice colt and she worked right with him.”
The Cox-conditioned GIII Indiana Oaks heroine Shedaresthedevil (Daredevil, #6) worked five furlongs in 1:01.40 underneath exercise rider Edgar Vargas.
“She’s really picked up her training over the last several weeks,” Cox said. “I’ve seen her really come into her own since winning the Indiana Oaks.”
Florent Geroux has the call next Friday.
At Del Mar Friday morning, ‘TDN Rising Star‘ Donna Veloce (Uncle Mo, #4) went five furlongs in 1:00.80 (XBTV video). Trainer Simon Callaghan told the Churchill press office via text that Ricardo Santana, Jr. would take the Oaks ride.
Hopeful Growth (Tapiture, #8), who was entered in Friday night’s GIII Charles Town Oaks as a Kentucky Oaks backup, worked five furlongs in 1:01.80 over the Monmouth Park main track.
“I moved the work up a day because we are supposed to get rain tomorrow,” trainer Anthony Margotta said via text. “I was very pleased with her breeze.”