(Edited press release)
World traveler Archipenko, projected favorite in the $1-million Arlington Million (gr. IT) Aug. 9, accomplished a pedestrian seven-furlong breeze over Arlington’s turf course Aug. 5, picking up the pace to get the last quarter in :27 with regular South African jockey Kevin Shea in the irons.
Owned by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Al Maktoum and Dr. A. H. Parker, Archipenko’s last two starts this year consisted of an impressive tally in Hong Kong’s Queen Elizabeth II Cup (HK-I) last April 27 and another strong victory in the Summer Mile Stakes (Eng-II) July 12 at Ascot.
In the Aug. 5 move, the 4-year-old Kentucky-bred son of Kingmambo breezed with the “dogs” well toward the outside fence, getting five-eighths in 1:13, three-quarters in 1:26, and seven-eighths in 1:39.
“Everything was good this morning,” said Shea following the dismount. “He’s not the greatest worker, and this morning I think the blinkers (on) gave him a little more, but he’s a different horse on race day. He always shows up then.
“The turf was riding soft this morning but I could feel his well being as he moved over it. I was very pleased with the way he felt under me.”
Midnight Cry Stable’s Einstein, winner of Churchill’s Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (gr. IT) on Kentucky Derby Day May 3, has arrived from Chicago for the Arlington Million and jogged over the local Polytrack Aug. 5 with trainer Helen Pitts astride.
Bred in South America, but campaigned in North America, Einstein is the projected favorite among those runners on this side of the Atlantic. He faces a strong challenge from not only Archipenko, but fellow European invaders Mount Nelson and Spirit One.
Einstein breezed a half-mile at Churchill Downs Aug. 3 in :49.80.
The rest of the Million field, which will be announced Aug. 6, could include Cosmonaut, Out of Control, Cloudy’s Knight, Silver Foot, Stream Cat, and Sudan.