Guy Caballero and Watch Me Strut reside in adjacent stalls in the Catherine Day Phillips barn, which will enable them to discuss strategy heading into the July 2, $ 1-million Queen’s Plate.
Their brainstorming could be all for naught, however.
“They have similar styles,” said Day Phillips, who trains Guy Caballero for Sean and Dorothy Fitzhenry and Watch Me Strut for her Kingfield Racing Stable and George Ledson. “They’re relaxed early, and come with a late kick. It’s maybe a question of who kicks better.”
Guy Caballero and Watch Me Strut also have kept company in the mornings on several occasions, including Saturday when they breezed five furlongs on the main track along with stablemate Split My Pants.
Split My Pants, a maiden winner last time out, scooted out to about a five-length lead under assistant trainer Candice Dixon with Watch Me Strut tracking from second under jockey David Moran and Guy Caballero another couple of lengths back under exercise rider Roy Garcia.
The three finished up together with Guy Caballero clocked in :59.80 and Watch Me Strut and Split My Pants in 1:01.
Day Phillips was pleased with the exercise and Moran and Garcia also spoke well of their mounts.
“You couldn’t ask for a better breeze, coming into a race like this, and he galloped out strong,” said Moran, who was aboard Watch Me Strut for the first time and has the call for the Queen’s Plate.
“He was very good,” said Garcia. “He’s worked for me regularly. He’s in good order.”
Guy Caballero is coming off a 20-1 score as the longest shot of six in the 1 1/8 mile Plate Trial here June 11 while Watch Me Strut rallied from last in a field of nine at almost 13-1 one week earlier to annex his first allowance condition in his first try as far as 1 1/16 miles.
Rafael Hernandez rode Guy Caballero in the Plate Trial but is sticking with Marine stakes runner-up Channel Maker for the Queen’s Plate and Day Phillips has recruited an interesting replacement in New York-based Jose Ortiz.
It looks to be all systems go for Spirit of Caledon, who breezed five furlongs in :59.40 on the main track under jockey Jerome Lermyte here Saturday and is scheduled to be supplemented to the Queen’s Plate at a cost of $ 25,000.
“It was perfect, just what we wanted,” said trainer and part-owner Pat Parente, who said he caught Spirit of Caledon galloping out six furlongs in 1:12 and pulling up through seven furlongs in 1:25.60. “He’s coming into the race well.”
Lermyte and Parente would be participating in their first Queen’s Plates.
Spirit of Caledon, who finished third last time out behind Watch Me Strut, would have to be supplemented to the Queen’s Plate at a cost of $ 25,000.
The Ontario-bred gelding has been racing for Chad Joe’s Copper Water Thoroughbred Company Ltd. and Parente but Dominic DiLalla’s Centennial Farms (Niagara) Inc. purchased a 25 percent interest earlier this week. Joe retains 50 percent and Parente the remainder.
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 © 2017 Paulick Report.