Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner Mucho Macho Man put in the last
local work Saturday morning, going five furlongs in 1:02.56 on the main
track at Gulfstream Park.
On Sunday, the Florida-bred fan favorite will leave for California
where he will have one more work at Santa Anita before the $750,000
Santa Anita Handicap (G1) on March 8.
Under regular exercise rider Nick Petro, Mucho Macho Man went out at
6:30 a.m. and was caught in splits of 24.99 and 37.40 seconds, galloping
out six furlongs in 1:15.63 down the middle of the track.
“The track was fast today, so we figured we’d take care of him,”
trainer Kathy Ritvo said. “He went five-eighths off the fence, just nice
and easy. He galloped out very well and he came back great, and he’ll
Mucho Macho Man won the Awesome Again (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Classic
at Santa Anita last fall, and was second by a half-length to Fort Larned
in the 2012 Classic.
“Hopefully, it will be the same as it was before, and he’ll have a
good trip out there,” Ritvo said. “He likes it there. It’s cool at night
and pretty nice during the day, so it’s good horse weather. It’s nice
to go out there. He’s had so much success out there, so it’s nice to go.
We’re looking forward to it, and he’s doing so well it’s hard not to be
Accompanying Mucho Macho Man to California will be Ritvo, racing
manager Finn Green, Petro and his hotwalker and groom, along with stable
pony, Oreo, and Ritvo’s dog, Oliver.
“Everybody goes with him, and we stay the same all the time. He has a
routine when we ship,” Ritvo said. “We ship him with another horse we
have and that keeps him comfortable because he knows someone from his
place is going. We all stay with him, so it makes for a smooth
transition. It works really well for us.”
The Santa Anita Handicap will be the first start for Mucho Macho Man
since Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs purchased a share in the 6-year-old
son of Adena-bred Macho Uno from owners Dean and Patti Reeves earlier
Mucho Macho Man will continue to run in the Reeves’ colors and be
trained by Ritvo and managed by Green. Upon his retirement, he will join
Adena’s stallion roster that includes Alphabet Soup, Awesome Again,
Fort Larned and Ghostzapper, all fellow Breeders’ Cup Classic winners.
Champion older horse and Horse of the Year in 2004, Ghostzapper was
inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2012.
“I’m really excited to be able to train for Mr. Stronach,” Ritvo said.
“I have never trained for him before, so it’s exciting to be able to
train for someone who has had so much success. It’s great to have a
great partner, and we know that he’ll have a great place to retire and
have a second career. I’m excited for him.”