LEXINGTON, KY (Oct. 22) A day before their scheduled departure from Keeneland for Santa Anita and the Breeders’ Cup World Championships on Nov. 4-5, Mile (G1) hopeful Tourist and Turf Sprint (G1) contender Celestine each worked for trainer Bill Mott for the first time since finishing third in their respective races on Oct. 8 during on Keeneland’s Fall Stars Saturday.
Tourist, third in the Shadwell Turf Mile (G1) behind Miss Temple City and Ironicus, worked in company with Theophilia to his inside. (Click here for a video of the work.) With exercise rider Juan Quintero aboard, he covered four furlongs in :49 with an internal fraction of :24.40 and out time of 1:02.20.
“We just wanted to see a maintenance half,” said Elliott Walden, president, CEO and racing manager of WinStar Farm, which co-owns the 5-year-old Tourist with Wachtel Stable and Gary Barber. “He’s in peak form, so he doesn’t need to do a lot. We’re good.”
Walden was pleased with the effort by the millionaire and winner of the 2016 Fourstardave (G1) on Aug. 20 in the Shadwell Turf Mile. Last year, Tourist was third in the Shadwell Turf Mile before running eighth in the Breeders’ Cup Mile at Keeneland.
“He ran the best figure in the (2016 Shadwell Turf Mile) and was wide, just got beat (less than a length),” Walden said. “That’s kind of the nature of the beast with turf racing. You typically have close finishes, so he needs to catch a break in the Breeders’ Cup and get a good clean trip. He’s in with a big chance.”
With Quintero aboard in the next set, Celestine, third in the First Lady (G1), worked three furlongs in :36.40. Keeneland clockers caught her in :12.60, :36.40 and out in :48.80. (Click here for a video of the work.)
The 4-year-old Scat Daddy filly, who won the June 11 Just a Game (G1) at Belmont for owner Phaedrus Flights, is being pointed at the 6½-furlong Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, a race that marks a cut back in distance.
“(Last year) she won a seven-furlong race at Belmont and she showed a lot of speed at Gulfstream when she broke her maiden and won a little overnight stakes,” Mott assistant Rodolphe Brisset said. “We feel pretty comfortable shortening her up. She bounced back really, really good from the (First Lady). The breeze today was very good. We really didn’t want to do too much.”
Brisset said Tourist and Celestine would have another work at Santa Anita before the Breeders’ Cup.
Celestine is cataloged as a racing or broodmare prospect in the Nov. 8 opening session of Keeneland’s November Breeding Stock Sale.