Churchill Downs' all-time leading trainer Dale Romans began Friday's nine-race card in search of his first victory of the 2019 Spring Meet but the South Louisville-native isn't letting the statistics keep him down.
Romans, 52, continued to map out future race plans for his stable stars including multiple graded stakes winner Promises Fulfilled and Preakness (GII) runner-up Everfast. Promises Fulfilled, who won the Allen Jerkens Stakes (GI) last summer at Saratoga, is on target for the $1.2 million Metropolitan Handicap (GI) while Everfast remains on schedule for the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (GI). Both races will be run June 8 at Belmont Park.
“Promises Fulfilled is one of the fastest horses in the country,” Romans said. “The Met Mile is turning out to be one heck of a race and I think we fit right with the rest of them that are heading there.”
Owned by Bob Barron, Promises Fulfilled clipped through a five-furlong bullet work in :58.80 Friday morning through opening fractions of :11.60, :23 and :46.80 before galloping out six furlongs in 1:12.20, according to Churchill Downs' clocker John Nichols.
“I decided to put Robby (Albarado) on him for this breeze,” Romans said. “Usually I work all my horses with exercise riders but I wanted a quicker work out of him and we got just what we needed.”
Calumet Farms' Everfast is a horse Romans dubbed as a “potential star” after he reversed his form in the Preakness. The son of Take Charge Indy had previously finished fifth in the Pat Day Mile presented by LG&E and KU (GIII) and ninth in the Florida Derby (GI).
“He really surprised a lot of us in a good way after running so well in the Preakness,” Romans said. “We'll see what lies ahead of him the rest of the 3-year-old campaign.”
Romans, winless in his first 28 starts of the meet, remains 11 wins ahead of Bill Mott in the all-time standings 724-713. Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen, who began Friday atop the trainer standings with 10 wins, continues to close ground with 686 career victories beneath the Twin Spires.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2020 Paulick Report.