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Saratoga and Del Mar 2017

Castellano Will Ride Stay Thirsty in Belmont Stakes

Stay Thirsty wins 2011 Gotham Stakes.

Owner Mike Repole’s Stay Thirsty breezed five furlongs over the Belmont Park main track Sunday morning in 1:00.45 (third fastest of 15 works at the distance) as he prepares for a start in the Belmont Stakes.

 

“I thought he worked really well,” said trainer Todd Pletcher. “It was a good solid five-eighths, a minute and two-fifths with a strong gallop out. We were happy with it.”

 

Javier Castellano, currently the leading rider at the Belmont spring/summer meet, was aboard the 3-year-old Bernardini colt for the workout and will also ride him in next weekend’s race. They went an eighth in 12.22, a half in 24.36, three eighths in 36.55, and galloped out in 1:13.40, finishing two lengths ahead of workmate Joe Vann.

 

Pletcher said that Stay Thirsty, winner of the Grade 3 Gotham at Aqueduct on March 5 before running seventh in the Florida Derby and twelfth in the Kentucky Derby, is doing very well heading into the Belmont.

 

“He’s as good as he can be coming into the race,” he said. “We’re hopeful that he can handle the mile-and-a-half distance. We won't know until we try it but his pedigree suggests he could handle it. We’re under the radar a bit. There’s no pressure so we can just come into it and have fun.”

 

 

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