Preliminary preparations for the $1 million TVG Pacific Classic on
Sunday, August 24, went well for several candidates during the week. For
some, Saturday’s $200,000, Grade II San Diego Handicap will be the
final pre-Classic test it is perfectly suited to be. A rundown:
Game On Dude – The defending race champion worked 4 furlongs in :47.60 under Martin Garcia on Saturday.
Majestic Harbor – The Gold Cup winner had his first
work since that race, going four furlongs in :50.00 under Tyler Baze.
“Just an easy half,” trainer Sean McCarthy said. “He seems happy, he
seems content so, fingers crossed, we’re pointing for the Classic.”
Clubhouse Ride – Worked five furlongs in :59.60 on
Friday, second-fastest of 54 works at the distance. “He looked better
than a million bucks, he looked like $1.3 million,” said trainer Craig
Lewis, citing the Gold Cup runner-up’s career earnings. The Pacific
Classic and the Whitney at Saratoga are primary targets for the
6-year-old’s next start. “More probably than not, we’ll run here,” Lewis
Dance With Fate – The Blue Grass Stakes winning
3-year-old worked five furlongs in :58.40 on Saturday for trainer Peter
Eurton, fastest of 90 at the distance. “Loved the work, loved the way he
did it,” Eurton said. “If everything goes well, we’ll see you next
Saturday (in the San Diego).”
Frac Daddy – The Ken McPeek trainee, in the care of
Blake Heap at Del Mar, is scheduled to work five furlongs under Joe
Talamo at 6:30 Monday morning in a final exercise for the San Diego. A
sufficient San Diego result would project to a Pacific Classic start.
Shared Belief – Worked 4 furlongs in :52.80 on
Wednesday, slowest of 13 at the distance at Golden Gate Fields where the
Eclipse 2-year-old champion and recent Los Alamitos Derby winner will
do the majority of his training leading up to the Classic.
Seventeen horses were nominated for the San Diego. Close of entries and post position draw is Wednesday.