Breeders’ Cup Mile - Thurs. notes

December 10, 2019

Anodin – see European report

Kaigun – Trainer Mark Casse, who has four entrants including Mile contender Kaigun in this year’s Breeders’ Cup, likened Thursday’s waiting game before the two-day event on Friday and Saturday to being stopped in traffic at a yellow light.

“You can’t go on green or stay stuck on red. It’s like we’re just idling now,” he said. “It’s not like being a couple of weeks out from a race where if one of your horses spikes a temperature or something you can fix it. All systems are go now and we’re waiting for the launching pad.”

Quintessential & Horsen Around and Gary Barber’s Kaigun, whom Casse transformed from an optional claiming horse into a Grade 2 winner by gelding him to cure his mental meltdowns, went to the track Thursday morning for a 1 1/2m gallop.

Karakontie – see European report

Mustajeeb – see European report

Obviously – Jockey Joe Talamo is never short of enthusiasm. But the level, even for him, amps up a notch when he talks about the 6yo Irish-bred Obviously, whom he'll ride for the third straight year in the Mile.

“He's a tremendous horse and it's a real pleasure to ride him and I'm fortunate to be able to ride him just about every time for the last two or three years,” Talamo said. “One thing about him, he tries hard every time. He's a real gentlemen and a real pro. He knows when it's race day.”

Talamo knows he might not be first out of the gate with Obviously, but he knows it won't be long before he's out in front of the field.

“He's not a quick horse out of the gate, he's been a step slow a time or two. But then he really gets going quickly,” Talamo said. “People don't realize he came from Europe and they're not taught to haul out of there early on.”

Obviously and fellow 6yo Trade Storm are the seniors in the Mile field. But in Obviously's case, Talamo said, age is just a number.

“I tell everybody he's ageless. You look at his form and every year he'll run 100-105-107 Beyer (speed figures). “He's training good and feeling great. I just hope he breaks well because if he does, the rest of it will take care of itself.”

Obviously jogged 1 1/2 m on the training track Thursday morning.

Sayaad – Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin is well aware that even with the defection of two-time Horse of the Year and 2012-13 Mile winner Wise Dan the race is still incredibly competitive.

Jockey Julien Leparoux, who rode the Shadwell Stable’s color bearer in the Shadwell Turf Mile when he was third behind Wise Dan, will receive the following instructions, “The ideal trip will be to break well and lay third or fourth and get the jump on the ones behind us who are closing. Tourist and Obviously go really fast, so we’d like to stay behind them,” said McLaughlin, who won the 2006 Classic with Invasor for Shadwell.

On Thursday Sayyad, a son of 2006 Juvenile winner Street Sense, galloped 1½m over the main track.

Seek Again/Tourist – Thursday was routine morning for trainer Bill Mott’s Tourist and Seek Again, who both galloped. The stablemates drew to the outside in the 14-horse field that has six European-based runners.

Tourist is making his first start since running second to Adelaide in the Secretariat, a 1 1/4m race at Arlington International Racecourse on Aug. 16. Mott scratched him from the Hill Prince at Belmont because he wanted to avoid the soft conditions.

Mott said the Tiznow colt fits in the Mile.

“He had been at a mile for two of his wins. That’s what we think his best distance is.” Mott said.

“Naturally, we tried the mile and a quarter. We thought that he would get the trip. I don’t think he’s as effective at a mile and a quarter against top company as he would be at a mile. And the ground was a little dull there that day. I don’t think he fancied the ground he was running over, but he was still good enough to be second. It wasn’t an impressive second, but he was second.”

Seek Again was 2-1-1 in four North American starts before finishing sixth in the Shadwell Turf Mile on Oct. 4. Mott said the colt was checked in traffic and did not recover after losing his momentum.

Summer Front – The Christophe Clement trainee galloped an easy 1m Thursday morning under the watchful eye of assistant trainer Christophe Lorieul, who could not be happier with Summer Front.

“He’s a very cool horse to be around. He extremely well. He just goes out there and does his job and comes back. He travels very well and and doesn’t mind anything at all. He’s very straight forward,” he said.

Lorieul said that he hopes the 5yo son of War Front will get enough pace up front in the race where he can bide his time in the middle of the pack to save as much ground as possible and then make his patented one run.

Clement, who arrives on Friday morning from his New York base, also saddles Tonalist in the Classic and Irish Mission in the Filly & Mare Turf.

Toronado – see European report

Trade Storm – see European report

Veda – see European report

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