Curlin, racing’s $10 million horse, arrived at Santa Anita on Sunday, Sept. 28, and settled in at Barn 27. Sherwood Chillingworth, executive vice president of the Oak Tree Racing Association, was on hand to welcome Blasi and Curlin to Santa Anita.
“We’re glad you came out,” Chillingworth told Blasi. “We’re just happy to have you here.”
Flying from New York the day after he won the Jockey Club Gold Cup Invitational (gr. I), Curlin was on a plane that stopped in Louisville to pick up Student Council. Both horses are pointing toward a possible start in the Oct. 25 Breeders’ Cup Classic (gr. I).The pair calmly walked the shedrow at barn 27 as Scott Blasi, assistant to trainer Steve Asmussen, and crew prepared stalls.
“If he’s going to run in the Breeders’ Cup, we want Santa Anita to be home for him for the next 30 days,” Blasi said of Curlin.
Whether Curlin runs in the Classic will depend on how he takes to Santa Anita’s Pro-Ride synthetic track. Asmussen and majority owner Jess Jackson decided about a half-hour after the Gold Cup to send Curlin to California the next day so that he has plenty of time to acclimate.
“Curlin’s a horse that has always done really well when you’ve got him in and trained him wherever he was at,” Blasi said. “What Curlin thinks means everything. We know what we want to do. It’s just that Curlin has to tell us that he wants to do it.”
Blasi said that Curlin traveled extremely well.
“He does a lot of eating and drinking water—he’s a good traveler,” Blasi said. “He’s so smart.”
Another from the far-flung Asmussen barn, Kentucky Cup Classic (gr. II) winner Zanjero, is expected to ship to Santa Anita Sept. 29.
Blasi said that Curlin would walk Sept. 29-30 and probably make his first visit to the Santa Anita track Oct. 1.