Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Sprint (gr. I) runner-up Force Freeze worked for the second-time in preparation for his 2012 campaign Jan. 14 at Gulfstream Park, breezing four furlongs in :49 3/5 to the complete satisfaction of trainer Peter Walder.
“He looked good. He was happy to be out there,” said Walder, who has scheduled the Gulfstream Park Sprint Championship (gr. II) on Feb. 18 as Force Freeze’s first race back.
Walder is looking forward to a successful 2012 campaign for Force Freeze with the Breeders’ Cup Sprint being the ultimate target. The 7-year-old gelding ended his 2011 season with a career best effort in the Sprint at Churchill Downs, in which Amazombie was fully extended to edge him by a neck.
The near-miss in the Breeders' Cup event has left Walder excited about Force Freeze’s upcoming campaign, as well as a bit anxious to get another shot at winning the Sprint with the son of Forest Camp.
“I wish the Breeders’ Cup was tomorrow. I think he was the best horse in the race. He was just a little rank and cut crazy fast fractions,” Walder said. “It’s a long year, but I wish it was tomorrow.”
Force Freeze won three of his first five starts in the U.S. before being sold to current owner Saeed Naser Al Romaithi in 2008. The Kentucky-bred raced 13 times in Dubai with moderate success before joining Walder’s stable last summer. He won at first asking in the Teddy Drone Stakes at Monmouth Park in July, before finishing second in the Vosburgh (gr. I) at Belmont in October.
“We’ll work every Saturday until the Gulfstream Park Sprint,” Walder said.
Force Freeze’s owner recently sent another promising horse, Marinous, to Walder. The 6-year-old French-bred turf performer is a group II stakes winner.
“He’s just galloping now. He’s about a month away from a work,” Walder said.
In other Gulfstream news, jockey Elvis Trujillo, tied for third in the rider standings, took off his mounts Jan. 14 for personal reasons, according to agent Cliff Collier.