Blue Devil Racing Stable's star homebred Come Dancing is beginning preparations towards a 2020 campaign. She is currently stabled in Ocala, Florida for a winter break following a smashing 2019 campaign in which she captured four graded stakes including a stellar Grade 1 victory in the Ballerina at Saratoga Race Course.
The 6-year-old Malibu Moon mare put in a strong gallop on Saturday morning at Ocala Stud Farm said conditioner Carlos Martin and would most likely move into half-mile breezes beginning next Sunday.
“She's doing great,” said Martin. “We're just beginning to prep to bring her back. She's put in some strong gallops going three-eighths yesterday. As long as we remain on schedule, she should move onto half-mile breezes starting next Sunday.”
With eight wins from 14 career starts amassing over $1 million in earnings, Martin said he had a couple of targets in mind for Come Dancing's 2020 season.
“It's exciting getting her ready to compete for another year,” said Martin. “She's healthy and sound. We have a couple options in mind to start her back. There's the Grade 1 Distaff at Churchill [May 2] which we're looking at as well as the Ogden Phipps [Belmont] and Beldame [Saratoga].
“With Marc Holliday [Founder Blue Devil Racing] being a NYRA Board Director, it's important for us to run in New York and in front of her fans,” added Martin. “So, of course we also take that into consideration.”
On Saturday at the Big A, Martin picked up his second victory of the winter meet and first stakes win of the year with 5-year-old mare Piedi Bianchi surging late and getting up in the last jump to win the $100,000 Correction.
Owned by Jay Oringer, Jack Bick, and Madaket Stables, Martin said the Indiana-bred Overanalyze mare is in fine fettle following her victory and expects more success from her this year.
“She really came back in great,” said Martin. “She ate up all her feed and is showing good energy for as hard as she ran yesterday. I know the three of them were out in front and battling, but it looked like they could go around one more time again if they wanted to.”
Unbeaten in two starts for Martin, Piedi Bianchi picked up her first stakes win since capturing the Francis Slocum at Indiana Grand Racecourse in 2018.
Martin said he would consider making the jump to graded stakes competition for her next start.
“I really expect her to continue to improve going forward from here,” said Martin. “I'll talk it over with the ownership group, but we can look at races like the [Grade 2, $250,000] Ruffian or the [Grade 3, 200,000] Vagrancy at Belmont next. Her ability to fire fresh really suits to the way we manage horses and she showed the fight necessary to win in races like she did yesterday.”
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