Scheduled to make her 5-year-old debut in Saturday’s Coolmore Jenny Wiley (G1) at Keeneland, Sheep Pond Partners’ Lady Eli worked five furlongs in 1:02.40 on a firm turf course Sunday morning. With exercise rider Walter Malasquez aboard, she worked in company with Roca Rojo (IRE) and Florent Geroux.
Keeneland clockers caught Lady Eli in fractions of :14, :26.80, :38.80, 1:02.40 and out in 1:15.60.
Trainer Chad Brown was pleased.
“She’s been training so well in South Florida, I just wanted her to have a recent breeze over the turf course,” Brown said. “She hasn’t run on it since she was 3 (and won the Grade 3 Appalachian Presented by Japan Racing Association). Every course is a little different. I took advantage of the opportunity to get on the turf course and let her get her footing on it.”
Lady Eli won the 2014 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) as part of a six-race win streak to open her career. She then was sidelined for a year because of laminitis. The filly recovered and returned to competition in August 2016, running second in the Woodford Reserve Ballston Spa (G2) at Saratoga. She next won the Flower Bowl (G1) at Belmont and was second in the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Turf (G1) at Santa Anita.
Brown said Roca Rojo, owned by Sheep Pond Partners with Newport Stables and Bradley Thoroughbreds, would not compete in the Coolmore Jenny Wiley unless the course was soft. She is being pointed at the Churchill Downs Distaff Turf Mile (G2) on Kentucky Derby Day.
In addition to Lady Eli, two other expected starters in the Coolmore Jenny Wiley worked over the turf.
Gary Barber, Michael James Ambler and Windways Farm’s multiple graded stakes winner Catch a Glimpse covered a half-mile in :50.40 with the final quarter-mile in :23.20 for trainer Mark Casse.
Working right behind her was the Phillips Racing Partnership’s Time and Motion, who covered a half-mile in :52.40 with jockey Jose Ortiz aboard. Fractions on the move were :14.20, :28.40 with the last quarter-mile in :24 flat.
“We wanted an easy work, because her last work was (5 furlongs) a :58 (at Palm Meadows in Florida),” said Tiffany Webb, assistant to trainer James Toner. “She galloped out nicely.”
Time and Motion won the Queen Elizabeth II Challenge Cup Presented by Lane’s End (G1) here last fall.
Other works of note with the races the horses are pointing to include: Heart to Heart (Maker’s 46 Mile), 4 furlongs in :49.80, out five-eighths in 1:02.60; Lady Aurelia (Giant’s Causeway), 5 furlongs in :59 with fractions of :11.80, :23.80, :35.80, :59 and out 6 furlongs in 1:14.40; Coasted (Giant’s Causeway), 4 furlongs in :52.20; and, Purely a Dream (Appalachian), 5 furlongs in 1:04.60.
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