With only one victory in his last six starts, Kona Gold appeared to be a horse that perhaps was beginning to show the wear and tear that comes with age. Well, the 8-year-old warrior showed Wednesday morning that he still has the pizzazz that helped him win the Breeders' Cup Sprint in 2000. With his regular rider Alex Solis in the saddle, the Bruce Headley-trained son of Java Gold stepped 5 furlongs in a snappy 57.40 workout that helped raise the early morning fog off the track. After the workout, Headley said, "That was a serious work. I wanted him to do that before he goes for his final workout. I didn't want him to have to do that then."
Headley, who has said he would train Kona Gold up to this year's Breeders' Cup Sprint, said Wednesday that he will nominate the gelding to the Ancient Title Handicap (gr. I) at Oak Tree as a possible prep for the Sprint. He had earlier expressed concern that the Ancient Title, which is three weeks before the Oct. 26 Breeders' Cup Sprint, had taken too much out of Kona Gold last year. Kona Gold ran seventh as the favorite at Belmont Park after finishing second in the Ancient Title.