Declan's Moon, Rockport Harbor Work Toward Seasonal Debuts

Declan's Moon, Rockport Harbor Work Toward Seasonal Debuts
Photo: Benoit photo
Declan's Moon continues to prep for his 2005 debut.
Two undefeated colts, Declan's Moon and Rockport Harbor, worked Thursday morning at Santa Anita and Oaklawn Park, respectively, in preparation for their 3-year-old debuts. Declan's Moon turned in a sharp five furlongs in :59 4/5, while Rockport Harbor went the same distance in 1:02 1/5.

Two-year-old champ Declan's Moon, owned by Samantha and Mace Siegel, is being pointed for the Santa Catalina Stakes (gr. II) March 5, and trainer Ron Ellis said the son of Malibu Moon   actually is ahead of schedule.

"This wasn't even a sharp work for him, he's just amazingly talented," Ellis said. "He's just so gifted, it's unbelievable. I had my rider on the two-way radio, and if I didn't look down at my watch I would have told him to pick it up, because I thought he was going way too slow. He clipped off three-eighths in :35 3/5 and had his ears pricked the whole way and was just galloping.

"He actually is farther along than I would have anticipated him to be, with the amount of time he's had off. I originally had planned on giving him two weeks off and he wound up getting closer to three because of all the rain. But he just seems like he's much stronger, and he's come around a lot faster than I thought he would. He's been a piece of cake to train. With him, all I do is just cross my fingers and pray that he stays sound. He's not one of those horses you have to do anything fancy with to make him a runner; you just guide him in the right direction."

Declan's Moon has won all four of his starts, including victories in the Hollywood Futurity (gr. I), Del Mar Futurity (gr. II), and Hollywood Prevue (gr. III).

Rockport Harbor, owned by Fox Hill Farm, also has won all four of his starts, highlighted by victories in the nine-furlong Remsen (gr. II) and Nashua (gr. III) Stakes at Aqueduct.

The son of Unbridled's Song had exercise rider Bobby Velez aboard as he went in splits of :12 2/5, :24 2/5, :37, and :49 2/5 before galloping out six furlongs in 1:16 1/5 over the fast track. The workout of five furlongs in 1:02 1/5 was the fourth fastest of 42 works at the distance.

"I'm very happy with the work," trainer John Servis said. "It was just what I wanted, he went perfect, and galloped out very well. There is an outside chance he'll make the Southwest Stakes (Feb. 19)."

Rockport Harbor is scheduled to work six furlongs next Wednesday (Feb. 9) under jockey Willie Martinez, who was Smarty Jones' work rider last winter and spring. If Rockport Harbor does run in the Southwest, Stewart Elliott will ride.

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