Multiple grade I winner Blame worked a half mile in :48 over the Polytrack at Keeneland in Lexington on a cool, damp morning Sept. 27. The move was the fastest of six works at that distance. The 4-year-old son of Arch is scheduled to start in the Oct. 2 Jockey Club Gold Cup (gr. I) at Belmont Park.
Ridden by Casey Chavez, Blame breezed at approximately 7:45 a.m. (EDT).
.“He went :25 for the first quarter and :23 for the second quarter and cooled out just right, which is the most important thing,” said Blame’s trainer Al Stall Jr. “This was more of just a blowout type work. We weren’t trying to gain anything by it fitness-wise. This was just kind of a sharpener. It’s just very routine.”
The work was Blame’s fourth straight at Keeneland since returning to his home base Aug. 30 following a summer at Saratoga, where he won the Whitney Handicap (gr. I). On September 19, Blame worked six furlongs in 1:12. Prior to that, he breezed 6 furlongs in 1:11 4/5 Sept. 12 and five furlongs in 1:00 1/5 Sept. 5.
“He had a bunch of stiff works and I wanted to get a two-mile gallop into him; that’s why I (blew him out today),” Stall said. “That’s needed here or there.”
Owned and bred by Adele B. Dilschneider and Claiborne Farm, Blame will go into the Gold Cup with a five-race winning streak that includes victories in the Whitney, Stephen Foster (gr. I), Clark (gr. II), and Fayette (gr. II) Handicaps. In 11 career starts, Blame has an 8-1-2 record with career earnings of $1,518,214. The Gold Cup will serve as a prep for the Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 6.
During the rest of the week leading up to the Gold Cup, Blame will walk Sept. 28 morning, jog Sept. 29, and then lightly train Sept. 30 before boarding a plane for New York around 10 a.m.