Trainer Chad Brown sent out a plethora of turf workers to Saratoga's Oklahoma training track Thursday morning as his contingent readies for the later stages of the summer meet.
A Raving Beauty, targeting the Grade 2, $400,000 Woodford Reserve Ballston Spa on Travers Day, August 25, breezed a bullet five furlongs in 1:00.65 in company with Santa Monica, returning off a half-length win in the Grade 2 Dance Smartly on June 30 at Woodbine.
Third behind Ultra Brat and stablemate Sistercharlie in the Grade 1 Diana on July 21, A Raving Beauty will be looking to rebound in the 1 1/16-mile Ballston Spa. The 5-year-old Mastercraftsman mare won the Grade 3 Beaugay on May 12 in her North American debut and then took the Grade 1 Longines Just a Game on June 9, Belmont Stakes Day, at Belmont Park.
Brown said the English-bred 5-year-old Santa Monica will get the chance to race at the Spa for the first time in the Grade 2, $250,000 Glens Falls on September 1. Contested over 1 3/8 miles on the turf, the Glens Falls is the last turf stakes for fillies and mares before the meet closes.
Santa Monica was originally scheduled to run in the Fasig-Tipton Waya on August 12 but was scratched when the race was moved off the turf to 1 ¼ miles on the main track.
Also under consideration for the Glens Falls is Homeland Security, who breezed four furlongs in 49.31 seconds in company with Onthemoonagain. The 4-year-old Smart Strike filly is coming off a successful stakes debut last out, winning the River Memories on July 8 at Belmont in her sixth career start.
Call Provision, fourth in the Grade 1 Man o' War on May 12, is set to return to stakes competition following a win and a second-place finish in a pair of optional claimers. The 5-year-old son of Lemon Drop Kid will be stretching out to 1 5/8 miles in the $100,000 John's Call on Wednesday, Brown said.
The trainer added that Good Magic and Gronkowski – his two expected entrants for the Grade 1, $1.25 million Runhappy Travers on August 25 – are training well and are expected to turn in their final works this weekend for the Mid-Summer Derby.
“They're doing super, so we'll just base their last workouts around the weather,” Brown said. “I have a little flexibility. They are both fit and doing well. So, we'll go either Saturday or Sunday.”
Good Magic put in his first breeze on the Saratoga main track on August 11 for his first work overall since winning the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational on July 29 at Monmouth Park. The Eclipse Award-winning 2017 champion juvenile male is 3-3-1 in eight starts with his only off-the-board effort coming with a fourth-place finish in the Preakness on May 19 at Pimlico.
Gronkowski, the runner-up to Triple Crown-winner Justify in the Belmont Stakes, has been training at Saratoga since July.
Rushing Fall, installed as the 9-5 morning-line favorite in Saturday's Grade 2, $300,000 Lake Placid for 3-year-old fillies on the Mellon turf course, is making her first start since she finished second to Toinette by a neck in the Grade 3 Edgewood on May 4 at Churchill. She started her career 4-for-4, including a win the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf in November at Del Mar.
Drawing post 6 in the seven-horse field, Rushing Fall will have the services of Hall of Fame jockey Javier Castellano as she stretches out to the Lake Placid distance of 1 1/8 miles for the first time. Rushing Fall has also done well under soft or yielding turf, with wins in the Grade 3 Jessamine on October 11 and the Grade 2 Appalachian on April 8 at Keeneland under those conditions.
“I'm excited to get her back. She seems to be doing real well,” Brown said. “She shouldn't have a problem handling the soft turf, if it does rain like it's [forecast].”
Brown will also saddle Significant Form, who is 3-1 on the morning line and drew post 4 with Irad Ortiz, Jr. named to ride. After running fourth in the Grade 1 Belmont Oaks Invitational on July 17 at Belmont at 1 ¼ miles, Significant Form will return to the distance at which she ran second to La Signare in the Grade 3 Wonder Again on June 7.
“I think the cutback to a mile and an eighth should help her; she's doing very well,” Brown said.
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