Edited From Breeder' Cup Notes Team Notes
Albert The Great--Trainer Nick Zito's Classic contender galloped 1 1/2 miles this morning under exercise rider Patty Krotenko. Albert The Great, winner of Belmont Park's The Jockey Club Gold Cup, drew post six for the Classic and will be ridden by last year's Eclipse-winning jockey Jorge Chavez.
"I'm okay with the draw," Zito said. "You don't want 14 and you don't want one, so I'm happy to be right in the middle."
Captain Steve--With a grin, trainer Bob Baffert formally thanked owner Mike Pegram for putting up the $290,000 to supplement Captain Steve to the Classic.
"The supplement was easy," said Pegram. "He's consistent, he's a fighter, he's proven he's a good horse ... when you got all that, you gotta dance the dance."
Captain Steve has compiled a record of three wins, two seconds and three thirds in 10 starts this year, with his only poor performance coming at Churchill Downs when he was eighth in the Kentucky Derby.
"He's doing super," said Baffert of the son of Fly So Free, who galloped Thursday morning. "He's been on a roll lately. He's been showing a different dimension. Then, everyone's been doing good, that's why we enter. That's why these races are so tough."
Cat Thief--Defending Breeders' Cup Classic hero Cat Thief galloped Thursday morning as he edged closer to the final race of his career.
Pat Day, who has ridden Cat Thief in 15 of his 29 career starts and to three of his four victories, was asked if he could tell what kind of effort he was going to get from the Overbrook Farm homebred on a given day.
"No, not for sure," Day said. "Obviously they have a little better indication in the barn with how they are training, how he is acting. He's a very temperamental individual and things pretty much have to go his way. When it does, as it showed in the Breeders' Cup last year, he can be terrific."
Dust On the Bottle--Sharon Hild's Hawthorne Gold Cup winner Dust On the Bottle walked the shedrow Thursday morning, a day after working a half-mile in 48 2/5 under jockey Tim Doocy who will ride Saturday.
"He went real well," said Doocy of Wednesday's work. "I was happy with the way he went. He has never been a real big work horse, but right now he is coming off those three wins and is a happy horse and doing real well."
Euchre--The Goodwood Breeders' Cup Handicap third-place finisher galloped 1 1/2 miles Thursday morning as he moved one day closer to Saturday's Breeders' Cup Classic for Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel. Euchre lost the Goodwood by two lengths to fellow Classic prospects Tiznow and Captain Steve.
Fusaichi Pegasus--The Kentucky Derby winner "trotted once around" Thursday morning under regular exercise rider Andy Durnin, according to trainer Neil Drysdale.
Asked about his thoughts on the 3-year-old colt being established as the 8-5 morning-line favorite in the Classic, Drysdale said, "Odds have no bearing on whether you win or not."
"Fusaichi Pegasus is not quite as rambunctious as he used to be," said Drysdale. "He is still playful, but not quite so unpredictable. When he was in New York, he didn't do anything wrong. He started playing again when he got here."
Gander--One of three horses to be supplemented to this year's Breeders' Cup Classic, Gander galloped 1 1/2 miles this morning under regular exercise rider Simon Harris. He and his stablemate, Sprint contender Shadow Caster, have been galloping all week in preparation for their respective races.
Giant's Causeway--Trainer Aidan O'Brien's Classic hopeful walked in the quarantine area Thursday morning after clearing quarantine on Wednesday. "He was a bit hyper yesterday so we didn't send him to the track," O'Brien said. "He's chilling down now."
O'Brien used a cricket metaphor to describe the challenge his multiple Group I winner faces on Saturday. "This is a different pitch and a new ball, but he is adaptable," he said. "The others have been trained for the race and know the style of racing here, but he did go to Southwell (in England) and went well. It's a slow sand surface and he handled it well.
Golden Missile--The Pimlico Special winner galloped 1 1/2 miles today under exercise rider Keith Ricks. Golden Missile will break from post 3 with Hall of Fame jockey Jerry Bailey.
"I thought he drew well," said trainer Joe Orseno. "He needs to be in the middle of things, and I know Jerry will be able to put him in the right spot to run at some horses."
Guided Tour--Following a 1 1/2-mile gallop by the 4-year-old gelded son of Hansel, trainer Niall O'Callaghan said he expects his Breeders' Cup Classic challenger to run in midpack in the early stages of the 1 1/4-mile race Saturday at Churchill Downs. "He has a good cruising speed," the native of Ireland said.
Though stabled at Churchill Downs, Guided Tour is a traveling man. His three most recent outings have resulted in victories in the Seagram Cup at Woodbine and the Hall of Fame Breeders' Cup at Thistledown and a runner-up effort to fellow Classic entrant Dust on the Bottle in the Hawthorne Gold Cup at Hawthorne.
Lemon Drop Kid--Following his 3 fur. workout Wednesday in 35 4/5, Lemon Drop Kid jogged one mile Thursday morning with F.S. "Scotty" Schulhofer seemingly encouraged more than ever over his chances Saturday.
"He's hot to handle right now," the trainer said. "As far as I'm concerned it's just a matter of luck. I can't imagine him doing anything other than galloping tomorrow.
Pine Dance--The 3-year-old colt, who raced just last Friday night when third in the Pegasus Handicap at the Meadowlands, had a half-speed breeze for 5 furlongs this morning just to keep him on his toes.
"It's what we would call a pipe-opener in Ireland," Dolan said. "We let him run the last furlong and a half to the wire, but he did it all in hand on his own."
TiznowThe 3-year-old colt galloped about 1 1/4 miles under exercise rider Ramon Arciga.
Trainer Jay Robbins said that post 13 should be no problem. "He should have time to angle over before the first turn," said Robbins. "It's better than being inside."
Robbins felt he was receiving a sort of second chance in the Classic since he was the original trainer of Budroyale, Tiznow's full brother who was claimed out of his 2yo debut for $32,000. Budroyale finished second in the Classic last year.
Vision and Verse--Trainer Bill Mott, who called preparing seven horses to run in the Breeders' Cup "a nice challenge," sent the 4-year-old Storm Cat colt out for a 1 1/8-mile gallop Thursday morning.
"He'll have to move forward again and it's possible he could -- he's been off all summer," said Mott of Vision and Verse, who has had but four starts this year, including a third to Albert The Great in The Jockey Club Gold Cup. "Trying to make a case he's better than Fusaichi Pegasus is quite a bit of a stretch. We're not trying to say that. But maybe there are some horses in there that aren't in peak form."