Grade 3 Dwyer winner Kid Cruz
hit Saratoga Race Course's main track at approximately at 7:15 a.m. on
Monday before turning in his final breeze for the Grade 1, $1.25 million
Travers, traveling four furlongs in 49.19 seconds while working in
company with A Marked Man.
Cruz, a four-time stakes winner who was third in the Grade 2 Jim Dandy
on July 26 at Saratoga, began the work on the inside a neck in front of A
Marked Man. He entered the stretch on even terms with his stablemate
before finishing approximately a half-length in front. A Marked Man, a
maiden, needed urging to keep up with Kid Cruz during the gallop out.
went perfect. I was very happy," said Linda Rice, who trains Kid Cruz
for Vina Del Mar Thoroughbreds and Black Swan Stable. "I told my
[exercise rider] I was looking for :49 [for a half-mile] and [a
five-eighths gallop-out in] 1:02, and he hit it right on the money. I
was happy with it."
Rice said Kid Cruz usually needs a workmate to exert himself when he trains.
always breezed him in company," said Rice. "It just puts him on the
bridle a little better. He's a little lazy. I certainly didn't want to
change that today coming into the race."
Cruz, claimed for $50,000 out of a maiden win last November at Aqueduct
Racetrack, will be the first Travers starter for Rice, who won the 2009
Saratoga training title.
me, I've been training here at Saratoga for 20 years and have had a lot
of great [memories]," said Rice. "My first Grade 1 win was at Saratoga
with Things Change as a 2-year-old. The long term goal, I've always
aspired to compete in and win the Travers. Going into it, I'm real
excited about that. Anytime you have a 3-year-old that wins four stakes
races as a 3-year-old, you're happy about it no matter where you got