Earlier this morning, Kentucky Derby (gr. I) seventh-place finisher Keen Ice turned in his final workout in advance of the June 6th Belmont Stakes (gr. I), breezing four furlongs at Churchill Downs before embarking on a plane flight to New York.
Trained by Dale Romans, the son of Curlin worked the distance in :50 1/5, the 23rd-fastest of 25 morning workouts at that distance. With regular exercise rider Tammy Fox aboard, Keen Ice started off with fractions of :12 2/5, :25 flat, and :36 3/5 and galloped out five furlongs in 1:04 2/5.
According to the Churchill Downs Barn Notes for June 2nd, Romans is very happy with the way Keen Ice has been training: “I thought he looked great and he worked great; it looked perfect,” Romans said. “He’s doing so good that it’s scary. It’s all a matter of whether or not he’s good enough. There’s not another fear to have.”
“With a lack of pace he [Keen Ice] will be laying closer. This is a race that even though people think it’s for a deep closer, it’s not; you need to be in the race. Woody Stephens said years ago that it’s a speed horse race going a mile-and-a-half and so lack of pace will keep us in contact and I know that we have the endurance to keep going.”