SARATOGA SPRINGS — Regal Glory has a new workout partner, but showed the same steady pattern on Sunday as she trains toward the Grade I Fourstardave on Aug. 13 at Saratoga Race Course.
The 6-year-old mare, who has been on a roll since winning the De La Rose at Saratoga last summer, breezed five furlongs in company with stablemate Virginia Joy in 1:02.12 on the Oklahoma Training Track.
The Chad Brown-trained Regal Glory had been working with In Italian, but In Italian just won the Grade I Diana last weekend, so Regal Glory needed a new partner.
Jockey Jose Ortiz was in the irons for Sunday’s breeze and liked the way Regal Glory went about her business while working to the outside of Virginia Joy.
“Very good. That’s what we were looking for, 1:01, that’s what Chad always looks for, so that’s what we did,” Ortiz said..
“We always go outside. She’s a horse who doesn’t like when you pull her too much. You’ve got to let her do whatever she wants, and that’s what I did, just sit there second and just follow the other horse.”
“Some horses prefer to have company and a target, so to speak, and some you rip along,” Brown said. “It just depends on the horse. She’s one that we’ve always preferred to have her looking at something.”
Regal Glory is still considered the top-ranked turf female in the country despite Brown’s horses going 1-2-3-4 in the Diana.
Regal Glory (11 photos)
She did not run in the Breeders’ Cup in November but has maintained a pretty regular race schedule since the De La Rose. Her only loss in that stretch was a second by a half-length to stablemate Blowout in the Grade I First Lady at Keeneland on Oct. 9.
Regal Glory is 3-for-3 in 2022, with victories in the Pegasus Filly and Mare Turf Invitational, Grade I Jenny Wiley at Keeneland and Grade I Just a Game on Belmont Stakes Day.
“She has a lot of natural ability, she continues to improve year to year and she’s in the best form of her life right now,” Brown said.
NO TRAVERS FOR JACK CHRISTOPHER
Brown didn’t get a victory in the big race at Monmouth Park on Saturday, but he did get an answer he was looking for out of it.
Otherwise, he won pretty much everything else.
Jack Christopher finished third by two lengths to Cyberknife in the nine-furlong $1 million Grade I Haskell for his first career loss from five starts, and that has convinced Brown that his colt is better suited for shorter distances. Jack Christopher had never run longer than a mile before the Haskell.
So he’ll be pointed toward the seven-furlong Grade I Allen Jerkens on Travers Day Aug. 27 instead of the main event. The Travers Stakes is a mile and a quarter.
“The horse ran really well,” Brown said. “I thought he got a good trip. It got a little quick on that final turn when they moved from 46 [seconds for a half-mile] into 1:09, it probably emptied him a little bit. But, all in all, it just looks like probably a little too far.
“I was a little disappointed that he couldn’t kick on through the lane, but we just shipped him up to Saratoga, so as long as he comes out of the race OK, I’ll cut him back and point to a race like the Allen Jerkens.”
It was the only disappointment on what was an otherwise spectacular day at Monmouth for Brown.
He and jockey Flavien Prat teamed up to win the other four graded stakes on the card, the Grade III monmouth Cup (Highly Motivated), Grade III Matchmaker (Lemista), Grade III Molly Pitcher (Search Results) and Grade I United Nations (Adhamo).
Adhamo could be pointed toward the Sword Dancer
“All the horses — and even with him [Jack Christopher], he did everything he’s supposed to do and just couldn’t get it done — but all the horses went down there and ran well,” Brown said. “I was really proud of all my horses and my team to have them all ready on a big day like that. There’s a lot of moving parts to get that done, and they did fabulous.”
Trainer Brad Cox said Cyberknife is in the Travers picture after his Haskell win.
NEST TO TRAVERS?
In the wake of Nest’s impressive win in Saturday’s Grade I Coaching Club American Oaks – and in light of her terrific showing against males in the Belmont Stakes – trainer Todd Pletcher said she’ll be pointed toward the Alabama on Aug. 20.
But running against males in the Travers is not out of the question.
“She showed she can hold her own against [males], and we know the mile and a quarter suits her,” Pletcher told the New York Racing Association. “So, we’ll keep it in the back of our mind. I’d say all things being equal, we’ll probably see her in the Alabama.”
AMERICA’S PASTIME WINS AGAIN
Let’s play two.
America’s Pastime Stables, whose front office includes Amsterdam Mohawks president Brian Spagnola and Albany Dutchmen general manager Jason Brinkman, split a doubleheader at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday when Stage Left won the eighth race at odds of 14-1 and Front Man finished seventh in the 11th race.
It was a third year in a row that America’s Pastime has won at least one race at the Saratoga meet, and it’s a measure of the ownership group’s success here that Spagnola, the stable’s managing partner, isn’t even sure anymore how many races they’ve won at the Spa.
“I think this is our tenth win here,” he said after Stage Left won the eighth race by 5 3-4 lengths. “This horse should’ve won his last start [at Belmont Park]. He got interfered with and there was a 15-minute inquiry, and we thought he was going up and he didn’t. So it kind of worked out. We got to come back here.”
Spagnola said that America’s Pastime, which owns horses in partnership with trainer Mertkan Kantarmaci’s Krakow Racing LLC, expects to start about 15 different horses at the Saratoga meet.
Stage Left carried the Krakow silks, and Front Man’s jockey, Trevor McCarthy, was wearing the distinctive America’s Pastime colors, with “AP” stitched inside the baseball logo. That logo is painted on the Mohawks’ dugout at Shuttleworth Park in Amsterdam.
“This [eighth] was a tough, tough race, so as good as he ran in his last start, we didn’t know what to expect,” Spagnola said. “But he raced huge. It’s exciting.”
SEVENTH RACE NO CONTEST
An on-track equipment failure led to the seventh race on Sunday’s card to be declared a No Contest.
The tractor that was supposed to pull the starting gate off the track malfunctioned, and as the field headed down the backstretch of the mile-and-a-sixteenth race on the Inner turf course and toward the second turn, an outrider waved off the jockeys.
A second tractor eventually was able to pull the other tractor and the gate off the track, but by then the jockeys had eased up their horses.
Because the race was declared a No Contest, all wagering involving the seventh race was affected.
There were refunds on all win, place, show, exacta, trifecta, superfecta and Triple Play wagers, as well any Daily Double, Pick 3 and Pick 4 bets that began with the seventh race.
There was a consolation payoff of $3.95 for Daily Doubles (4-ALL) that began in the sixth race and $9.20 consolation payoff for Pick 3 bets (4-4-ALL) that began in the fifth.
For Pick 4, Pick 5, Pick 6 and Grand Slam bets in which the seventh race fell in the middle of the sequence, all tickets remained live heading into the eighth race.
Each owner with an entry in race 7 will receive $3,150.