Keeneland Fall Meet Opens Friday

Keeneland's Fall Meet opens Friday and several racetrack stars are working toward weekend stakes races.

The meet opens with the $400,000 Walmac International Alcibiades Stakes (gr. II) and the $500,000 WinStar Galaxy Stakes (gr. I) on Friday. Saturday's card is highlighted by the $400,000 Lane's End Breeders Futurity (gr. II) and the $150,000 Phoenix Breeders' Cup Stakes (gr. III), with the $500,000 Overbrook Spinster Stakes (gr. I) and the $600,000 Shadwell Turf Mile (gr. IT) taking center stage on Sunday.

Working toward the Lane's End Breeders' Futurity was John and Deby Oxley's Sky Mesa. The bay son of Pulpit broke off at the five-eighths pole, cruising the first eighth of a mile in a shade over :14, idled around the clubhouse turn and picked it up from the quarter pole, while working out to the three-quarter pole. The John Ward-trainee was timed at 1:32.

Ward also sent out grade I winner Booklet, who skipped an easy five panels in 1:03, galloping out six furlongs in 1:16 and change.

Another Ward-trainee, Snow Dance, working toward the WinStar Galaxy, worked around the dogs in 1:05 for Ward.

Also working toward the WinStar Galaxy was Dahlia Handicap winner, Verruma, who breezed a half-mile in :48 flat for trainer Burk Kessinger, Jr.

In other WinStar Galaxy developments, trainer Ron McAnally has named Hall of Fame jockey Pat Day to pilot Affluent in the WinStar Galaxy. Affluent's regular rider, Eddie Delahoussaye, was injured during the Del Mar meet will miss the remainder of the year. Trainer Bobby Frankel has confirmed that Surya will start in the WinStar Galaxy.

In other Keeneland weekend stakes notes, trainer David Forster sent Phoenix Breeders' Cup hopeful Makor's Mark out on Monday. Markor's Mark breezed five furlongs in 1:02. Kent Desormeaux will have the mount on You for Sunday's Overbrook Spinster Stakes.