Breeders’ Cup Workouts Report: 10-29-16 (Keeneland Edition)

Breeders’ Cup Workouts Report: 10-29-16 (Keeneland Edition)

I’m a Chatterbox breezing at Keeneland on October 29th – Keeneland/Coady Photography

On Saturday morning, with the Breeders’ Cup just a week away, four prominent Breeders’ Cup contenders turned in pre-race workouts at Keeneland. Here are my thoughts on how each horse looked, along with videos of the breezes and quotes from their trainers! All videos courtesy of Keeneland.

I’m a Chatterbox: Made a powerful impression with a fast five-furlong workout on the Keeneland main track, cruising through fractions of :12, :23, and :35.60 before throwing in a :23.40 final quarter to reach the wire in :59 flat. Remarkably, she did this under no urging and with her ears up before galloping-out six furlongs in 1:12.60 to complete her eye-catching breeze.

“She went good,” trainer Larry Jones was quoted as saying in an article on the Keeneland website. “And with it being the only work between the (Juddmonte) Spinster and (the Breeders’ Cup), we needed to make sure it was a decent work. We’re going into it the way I like to. As I told [rider Florent Geroux] when we started, ‘Give her one of those Oaks works and let her go ahead and do something.’ We’re shooting for the Breeders’ Cup.

“We’re where we want to be. If we get beat, we get beat.”

Ring Weekend: Breeders’ Cup Mile contender worked five furlongs on the main track in a much slower time than I’m a Chatterbox, but couldn’t have gone much easier. After being urged early in the work to get up to speed, Ring Weekend cruised around the track, and although he seemed just a bit slow switching leads, he finished nicely under no urging with his ears not only up, but pointed forward — he appeared to be well within himself and running very easily while getting five furlongs in 1:02.80 off fractions of :12.40, :24.60, and :37. He galloped-out six furlongs in 1:17.20.

Undrafted: Strolled around the Keeneland turf course in solid fashion, posting fractions of :12.80, :24.40, and :37.80 on his way to a five-furlong time of 1:01 per Keeneland clockers. He did it easily, with his ears pricked and without urging from his rider, and he continued past the wire for another furlong in :14 2/5.

“It was a nice little cruiser, all by himself,” trainer Wesley Ward. “He did everything right. This is his home, so he feels very, very comfortable here. We’re getting him on the last plane out on Nov. 1 to keep him right here at home until he’s gotta go. We’re all set.”

Undrafted will enter the Breeders’ Cup off a sixth-place finish in the Woodford Stakes (gr. III) at Keeneland. “He kinda got way back on a slow pace and couldn’t catch them,” Ward said. “He made a big run at them, but he only got to run down the stretch. He came back like he didn’t even run, so I think he’s going to run a big, big race (in the Breeders’ Cup).”

Zipessa: Like Undrafted, she breezed five furlongs on the turf course and looked eager to begin, with her ears pricked and her head held high as she seemed poised to take a jump early in the work. She kept her ears up throughout the work and finished nicely under just a little bit of urging, posting fractions of :13.20, :25.40, and :38.80 on her way to a final time of 1:02.60. Her time was slower than Undrafted’s, but she was powerful on the gallop-out, going another furlong in :13.60.

“She is fit and ready to go,” trainer Mike Stidham said. “She always gallops out big. She did just what we were looking for.”

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Follow J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman"):

J. Keeler Johnson is a writer, blogger, videographer, and all-around horse racing enthusiast who was drawn to the sport by Curlin's quest to become North America's richest racehorse. A great fan of racing history, he considers Dr. Fager to be the greatest racehorse ever produced in America, but counts Zenyatta as his all-time favorite. He lives in Wisconsin and also writes for the blog Unlocking Winners.

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