Allure d'Amour/More Than Real – Both fillies were on the track for gallops Wednesday morning after drawing demanding outside posts in a full field of 14 for Friday’s 1m grass event. Allure d’Amour drew post 14 while More Than Real was given the 11.
“We got roughed up a bit there, but hopefully there’s enough run to the first turn on a seven-eighths turf course that we can save some ground,” trainer Todd Pletcher said. “It’s just one of those things you have no control over and you try to make the best of it.”
More Than Real is a son of the Pletcher-trained More Than Ready, who ran fifth in the Sprint at the 2000 Breeders’ Cup.
“He’s been a tremendous sire here and in Australia as well,” Pletcher said. “He’s just a horse that’s been good to us for a long, long time. I’m very optimistic about this horse. Both More Than Real and Pluck in the Juvenile Turf are horses that are doing exceptionally well and coming up to their races really well.”
Allure d’Amour broke her maiden last out at Belmont from an outside post, while More Than Real was second in her stakes debut in the Natalma at Woodbine.
Fancy Point – The 2yo daughter of Point Given settled in nicely at Churchill Downs after vanning up from Florida late Monday afternoon. She went to the track Wednesday morning after the break for a jog and will school in the paddock Thursday afternoon, trainer Will Phipps said.
The Juvenile Fillies Turf contender won the P.G. Johnson Stakes at Saratoga on Sept. 1, then ran third in Belmont’s Miss Grillo on Oct. 3 for Kinsman Stable. She turned in her last work at Hunter Farm, a training center in Ocala, Fla., on Oct. 23 going 5f in 1:04 3/5. Jockey Kent Desormeaux has the mount.
Flood Plain – Juddmonte Farms’ homebred 2yo filly has adjusted well to her new surroundings in the quarantine barn at Churchill Downs after shipping from England on Saturday. The filly cantered on the main track Wednesday morning.
“We’re very happy with her,” said Danny Harrap, trainer John Gosden’s assistant. “She’s eating well and very content; couldn’t be happier.”
The daughter of Orpen picked up an outside position, No. 12 in the field of 14, going 1m Friday.
“Not so happy with the draw, obviously,” Harrap said. “But we can slip in. Hopefully there is some pace there.”
Jockey William Buick will ride the filly in what will be her first two-turn race after two 7f races on straight courses in England. Harrap said he thinks she will adjust easily to the competing on turns.
“The rider cantering her was happy enough,” he said. “She handled it. She wasn’t green or anything. She’s handled it real well. That was probably the first time she ever went left-handed. It’s new, but what she learns now is what’s going to happen in the race. She learned hopefully enough.
“But she’s wise and straight. She sits in the bridle. So she’s not a green horse. She should be able to turn. It’s just the draw. Hopefully there is some pace.”
Kathmanblu – The Jessamine Stakes winner galloped 1 1/2 m on Wednesday following the renovation break. Trainer Ken McPeek explained that on Monday the filly got a little keyed up with all the commotion on the track early, so they’ve been waiting to bring her out until the track is quieter. He reports the filly has been doing very well.
New Normal – The daughter of Forestry jogged 1m and galloped 1 1/2 m Wednesday morning with trainer Mark Frostad supervising the training.
New Normal has won two straight turf races, including the Natalma at Woodbine last out, while racing on the front end. She drew post 10 for the Juvenile Fillies Turf, and with most of the speed inside her, may not make the lead Friday.
“She doesn’t need the lead,” Frostad said. “From that post, she’ll settle nicely and she can stalk the speed. Of course, if the pace isn’t too hot, it’s possible she could be in front. That will be up to Javier (jockey Castellano) to decide.”
New Normal finished fourth in her debut on Aug. 2, but ran into traffic through the stretch and never got to run her best, Frostad said. She broke her maiden on Aug. 28 with a front-running performance at 7f.
“She came out of the one-hole that day, and she had to go to the front,” Frostad said.
New Normal scored in the 1 m Natalma, her first stakes try, on Sept. 18 with Castellano aboard, and has been breezing at Woodbine since then. The filly is owned by breeder R.S. Evans.
Nina Fever – Trainer Wesley Ward, ever the optimist, continues to work toward the Juvenile Fillies Turf with also-eligible Nina Fever, who galloped over the grass on Wednesday morning.
“I just really hope she gets in,” Ward said. “She’s been working really well and I think she fits in the race.”
As the only also-eligible on the list, she would need only one defection to make the race. If so, she would start from post 14.
Quiet Oasis – Quiet Oasis and stablemate Theysken’s Theory went out after the break, with ponies alongside, for a leisurely gallop Wednesday. A loose horse disrupted their gallop, but trainer Brian Meehan, who was on one of the ponies, said that Quiet Oasis is a horse not easily bothered.
“The running horse came very close, but we always have the ponies out with them, and they were in between the fillies and the loose horse,” he said, noting there wasn’t much reaction. “A bit of a buck and kick, but nothing much and then back to business.”
Formerly owned by the Sangster Family, Quiet Oasis was purchased three to four weeks ago by agent Jamie McCalmont for J. Paul Reddam.
“She could potentially go anywhere, but she is likely to return with me,” Meehan said. “Mr. Reddam lives in California, and I am happy to race there anytime he wants.”
Tale Untold – Marc Keller’s Tale of the Cat filly cantered on the main track at Churchill Downs Wednesday morning.
Keller purchased the filly in September from her European owners and left her in the care of trainer Richard Hannon to prepare for the Breeders’ Cup. Following the race she will be trained by New York-based trainer Richard Ribaudo.
Assistant trainer Richard Hannon Jr. is handling the filly for his father, who underwent successful heart bypass surgery this week.
“She’s very, very tough,” Hannon Jr. said. “She’s a very, very nice filly. She’s not very big, but she’s got a heart like a lion. She tries very hard and she’s very tough. She’s had a few races now, so she’s battle-hard. She’ll have a good chance, hopefully.
Together – Together was the last of the Ballydoyle horses to go to the track on Wednesday, led out to the first turn by trainer Aidan O’Brien’s head lad Pat Keating. The filly jogged and lightly cantered once around the track and then returned.
“They are all doing well,” Keating said.
Winter Memories – Trainer Jimmy Toner decided not to let his filly train on the grass course because there was a great deal of activity around the track with the arrival of Zenyatta, sending the unbeaten 2-1 morning-line favorite out for a 1 1/4 m gallop on the main track.
“She went out there, had a good gallop and everything was fine,” he said.
Toner schooled the filly owned by Phillips Racing Partnership in the paddock prior to the second race Wednesday afternoon where she received a thorough education.
“She was fine. She handled everything,” he said.
Wyomia – The daughter of Vindication galloped 1 1/2 m on the main track Wednesday morning and then schooled in the paddock.
Assistant trainer Silvio Abela supervised the exercise with trainer Dan Vella en route to Louisville from his Woodbine headquarters.
Wyomia will be after her first turf victory in Friday’s race after winning two straight, including the Mazarine Stakes last out, on Woodbine’s Polytrack.
The filly, who finished fifth behind New Normal in her only turf try (a maiden race on Aug. 28) gets a new rider for Friday with Vella giving the call to Rafael Bejarano.