While multiple graded stakes-winning 3-year-old Mohaymen gets some time off before launching a summer campaign, trainer Kiaran McLaughlin will be busy with several stakes runners during the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival.
Recent Keeneland maiden winner Kareena is set to make her stakes debut in Friday’s $ 150,000 Jersey Girl for 3-year-old fillies. On Saturday, McLaughlin will have Cavorting in the Grade 1, $ 1 million Ogden Phipps and is looking at running Frosted and Marking, both owned by Godolphin Stable, and possibly Shadwell Stable’s Tamarkuz in the Grade 1, $ 1.25 million Mohegan Sun Metropolitan Handicap.
“Frosted is doing great, working weekly and ready to go,” McLaughlin said Sunday morning. “Obviously it’s maybe a little shorter than his ideal trip, but it is an important race to be on a resume for a stallion and we feel like going a mile there’s going to be a ton of pace and he can finish strong, and hope he gets there.”
Frosted and Marking are both scheduled to arrive at Belmont on Wednesday from Greentree Stables in Saratoga Springs, N.Y., where they have been training since arriving back in the U.S. from Dubai.
“Marking is doing very well, been working weekly also,” McLaughlin said. “It’s a tough, tough race for him but again it’s such an important race for a possible stallion, and he is a possible stallion; great pedigree, beautiful horse.”
Grade 1 winner Frosted, second to 2015 Triple Crown champion American Pharoah in the Belmont Stakes, won the Group 2 Al Maktoum Challenge Round 2 February 4 before finishing fourth in the Group 1 Dubai World Cup March 26, his most recent start.
Marking, by Bernardini, was second in the Grade 1 Malibu to end his 3-year-old season last December and has made three starts this year in Dubai, winning a February 25 handicap and finishing fourth in the Group 2 Godolphin Mile on the World Cup program.
McLaughlin said Frosted and Marking have adjusted well following their extended stay in the Middle East under the watch of his brother and assistant, Neal.
“The world is getting smaller and smaller. We sent our people. Neal was there and we were feeding them and training them and it’s no big deal,” he said. “We probably could have run earlier had we wanted to. Lady Shipman is a good example. She ran and won two stakes since coming back. They’re doing great, look fabulous, no big deal.”
A graded stakes winner at 2, 3 and 4, including the Grade 1 Test last summer at Saratoga, Cavorting is coming off a dominant five-length victory in the one-mile, Grade 2 Ruffian May 14 at Belmont. She stretches back out to 1 1/16 miles for the Ogden Phipps.
“She’s here, training, and doing great. Her last race was fabulous. It was a ‘wow’ race,” McLaughlin said. “She had a great run the other day going a mile, waiting and not going to the lead. We feel like she’ll get the mile and sixteenth, no problem, provided we get a good trip. But she is doing very, very well.”
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