De Seroux Excited about Azeri

Trainer Laura de Seroux is excited about the way reigning Horse of the Year Azeri is training up to the Oct. 25. Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships at Oak Tree at Santa Anita.

"I like to think I am an optimistic person but I knew I had to realistic after the Lady's Secret, and I was a little apprehensive if we were going to make it to the Breeders Cup," the trainer said Thursday during a National Thoroughbred Racing Association teleconference. "I have to say now it's been remarkable the way she has rebounded and I couldn't be happier."

The trainer said the Breeders' Cup Distaff (gr. I) has always been her goal, despite the fact that Azeri also is cross entered in the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge (gr. I). "Cross entering in the Classic was just a formality. The Distaff is my goal and my and it's always been my first choice," she said.

As far as repeating as Horse of the Year, de Seroux said she wasn't very preoccupied with thoughts of Eclipse Awards, but did say she felt like Azeri had a chance for repeat honors if she won the Distaff and if the Classic was won by a horse not considered in the running for Horse of the Year honors.

"She's been giving weight all year and with her high weight count in her last race, it's remarkable she's done so well this year," the trainer said. "I've never had the door to the Classic open and I've been saying all year that the Distaff is going to be tough. Going against the males is something I've never wanted."

De Seroux said Azeri has a lose to avenge, but her main concern is leading her to the track as close to 100% as possible. "We're taking it day by day and we're ready to move forward," she said.