Turf Stars Get First Look at Grass Course

Turf Stars Get First Look at Grass Course
Photo: Lone Star Park
Kitten's Joy, on track at Lone Star Park.
The first Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships contenders to test the Lone Star Park turf course worked Saturday morning, with slow times the norm of the day.

Due to Friday rains that saturate the turf course, the rail was set out about 20 feet and there were orange cones, referred to as "dogs," set out about another 20 feet when Kitten's Joy, Wonder Again, and Magistretti stepped onto the track at mid-morning, The result was that the workout times were slower than they otherwise would have been.

"Today, we were trying to see how he would handle the track and he definitely handled it well," said trainer Patrick Biancone, whose John Deere Breeders' Cup Turf (gr. IT) contender Magistretti was timed in 1:20 for six furlongs. "The track is just lovely. The time is slow but I was in (audio) contact with the rider so he went in the time I wanted him to go in. For me, it was perfectly what I wanted."

A son of Diesis, Magistretti was a group II winner in Europe before returning to the U. S., where he won the Man o'War (gr. IT) in three starts.

Kitten's Joy, who is also going in the Turf, was timed in 1:06 2/5 for five-eighths of a mile.

A 3-year-old son of El Prado, Kitten's Joy has finished first or second in 10 of his 11 career starts and earned $1,305,911. His three-race win streak includes the Joe Hirsch Turf Classic and Secretariat Stakes, both grade I.

"He looked like he got over it pretty well," said trainer Dale Romans, noting that exercise rider Faustino Orantes said he could hear the sound of water underneath the grassy surface. "It was a slow time but he went good."

The best time of the turf workers was posted by VO5 Filly & Mare Turf (gr. IT) contender Wonder Again, who went five-eighths of a mile in 1:04 4/5.

The daughter of Silver Hawk trained by James Toner has won seven of 18 career starts, including the Diana Handicap (gr. I), and earned $956,582.

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