Alexis Barba, who trains Belmont contender Make Music For Me.

Alexis Barba, who trains Belmont contender Make Music For Me.

Anne M. Eberhardt

Make Music for Me, Drosselmeyer on Work Tab

Belmont Stakes contenders post slow times over a deep main track May 23.

Newly arrived Make Music for Me had his first breeze at Belmont Park May 23, covering a mile in 1:43.65 with trainer Alexis Barba looking on in preparation for the June 5 Belmont Stakes (gr. I).

The other Belmont hopeful on the work tab was Dwyer Stakes (gr. II) runner-up Drosselmeyer, who went six furlongs in 1:14.10 for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.

While the times appeared slow, both Barba and Mott felt the main track was somewhat deep and said they were satisfied with the moves. Make Music for Me’s breeze was the only one at a mile, while Drosselmeyer’s was the faster of two at six furlongs. Workmate Raging Wit covering the distance in 1:15.24.

“I’m not used to the times here, but he’s fine,” said Barba, who is more familiar with the synthetic surfaces in Southern California, where she is based. “The track is deep, and it’s what we needed to do. It’s a good time to get a good workout in him.”

The move was the third for Make Music for Me since he closed from last to finish fourth in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) May 1. The son of Bernstein--Miss Cheers, by Carson City, breezed a half-mile in :48 3/5 May 10 and five furlongs in 1:03 1/5 May 16, both over the synthetic surface at Keeneland.

Barba said the colt, owned by Peter and Ellen Johnson, would walk, jog and gallop until his next breeze on May 30. Make Music for Me has just one win in nine starts but was grade I-placed in both the Del Mar Futurity and the CashCall Futurity last year.

Mott, who will be saddling his fifth Belmont Stakes starter and his first since Vision and Versefinished second to Lemon Drop Kid  in 1999, said Drosselmeyer's work was “visually impressive.”
“By the stopwatch it was slow, but we thought it was a useful work, considering the track was quite slow,” said Mott. “It was a good, steady work, he went by his company when he was supposed to, and he galloped out well.”

WinStar Farm’s  Distorted Humor  colt, who has not been off the board in eight lifetime starts, will work again next weekend for the 1 1/2-mile Belmont, said Mott.