Maker’s 46 Mile Remains Target For Two-Time Horse of the Year Wise Dan
Trainer Charlie LoPresti remains hopeful that two-time reigning Horse of the Year Wise Dan can make his 2014 debut in the 26th running of the $300,000 Maker’s 46 Mile (G1) on Friday, April 11.
“He is doing well. He is an amazing horse,” LoPresti said of Wise Dan, who has had five works since returning to the barn at Keeneland last month. “Right now, I’d say he is 75 percent (to run), but it has to warm up and not have any hiccups.”
One of LoPresti’s concerns has been the effect of a cold winter and early spring on the turf course.
“The turf course needs some grass on it. It is not just here; I don’t have any grass in my front yard,” LoPresti said. “He is a year older and I am not going to do anything to jeopardize the year.”
A five-time graded stakes winner at Keeneland, Wise Dan started his 2013 championship campaign with a victory in the Maker’s 46 Mile. Only Kip Deville (2007-08) has won the Maker’s 46 Mile in consecutive years.
The 7-year-old Wise Dan is owned by his breeder, Morton Fink. Fink also owns and bred Successful Dan, the 8-year-old half-brother to Wise Dan.
Winner of the Ben Ali (G3) last year, Successful Dan also is nearing a return to the races.
“He is doing very well and has been training as good or better than Wise Dan,” LoPresti said of Successful Dan, who has not run since a third-place finish in the Woodward (G1) at Saratoga at the end of August.
“He gets inflammation in the ligament that has given him trouble and we have to watch it and that is why we stopped on him last year. I may have to back off a little,” LoPresti said of Successful Dan, who is fewer than $2,000 from becoming a millionaire. “He might run in the Ben Ali or the ($300,000-added) Alysheba (G2 on May 2 at Churchill Downs) or not until Saratoga.
“The better races for him are in the summer and fall.”
Judy the Beauty Sharpens Speed for Run in Madison
Judy the Beauty, winner of the Thoroughbred Club of America (G2) here last fall, worked five furlongs in :59.60 on the main track in preparation for the $300,000 Madison (G1) to be run Saturday, April 12. The work was the fastest of the morning at the distance.
Trained by owner Wesley Ward, Judy the Beauty has won all three of her starts at Keeneland. Saturday’s work was her first since winning the Las Flores (G3) at Santa Anita on March 9 in her 2014 debut.
Ward said Saturday that he is aiming for the $750,000 Toyota Blue Grass (G1) on April 12 with Pablo Del Monte.
“This is his track,” Ward said of Pablo Del Monte, who is unbeaten in two starts here.
Pablo Del Monte finished third in the Hutcheson (G3) in his most recent start at Gulfstream on Feb. 1 and has had two works here since shipping to Kentucky this month.
Catalano Eyes Central Bank Ashland with Room Service
Trainer Wayne Catalano already has one filly with enough points to earn a Kentucky Oaks (G1) berth with James Miller’s Aurelia’s Belle, the winner of last weekend’s Pure Romance Bourbonette Oaks (G3) at Turfway Park.
Next Saturday, Catalano will send out Room Service for Gary and Mary West in the $500,000 Central Bank Ashland (G1) that will reward the winner 100 points toward the Oaks.
“She has had two good works here and worked a bullet (1:01) five-eighths on Thursday,” Catalano said of the winner of the Herecomesthebride (G3) on March 2 at Gulfstream going 1 1//8 miles on turf. “All the races on turf down there have been speed, speed, speed and the day she won, she ran like Zenyatta.”
The Central Bank Ashland will represent the Polytrack debut for Room Service, who has not finished worse than third in five career starts on grass.
Catalano also said that Solitary Ranger and Poker Player, the ninth- and 10th-place finishers, respectively, in last Saturday’s Horseshoe Casino Cincinnati Spiral (G3) are not under consideration for the Toyota Blue Grass (G1).