American Pharoah Heading Home After Haskell
August 03, 2015 08:11am

Triple Crown champion American Pharoah, who electrified the record 60,983 fans at Monmouth Park and across the racing world with a dominant victory in Sunday’s Grade 1, $1.75 million William Hill Haskell Invitational, was in fine fettle the morning after and was headed home to California.

“He came out of the race perfect. He looks like he could go out there and do it again today,” said Jorge Alvarez, who is the colt’s regular exercise rider and traveled with him back to Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert’s base at
 Del Mar. “He wasn’t even tired this morning. He cleaned the tub and ate all of his food.”

Zayat Stables’ American Pharoah walked the shedrow this morning before getting on the van at
 8:30 a.m. that would take him to Atlantic City Airport, where he was to board a private jet for the transcontinental flight. Alvarez expected that about 10 hours later the colt would be settled back in his stall in Baffert’s barn.

“We’ll stick to his normal routine. For three days, he’ll just walk and then go back to jogging. Bob will decide from there,” said Alvarez, who declared the colt to be the best he’s galloped in his long career working for top stables and with top caliber horses.

“I sat on his grandfather, Empire Maker (the 2003 Belmont Stakes winner) and this horse’s sire, Pioneerof the Nile (second in the 2009 Kentucky Derby), Peace Rules (the 2003 Haskell victor), and a lot of other great ones, but never one like this one,” said Alvarez, who worked for Hall of Fame trainer Bobby Frankel before joining Baffert. “He makes it all extra special.”

Alvarez added that American Pharoah’s keen intelligence on top of his extraordinary talent is what helps set him above.

“He is a very smart horse. That’s the key to what makes him so good. He never wastes his time or energy on the wrong things. He puts all of his energy and effort into the right things and that makes all of the difference,” he said.

American Pharoah’s camp was still basking in post-Haskell glory now that he has won eight straight graded stakes races, and seven Grade 1s, and pushed his earnings to $5.63 million.

“He put on a good show yesterday,” said Alvarez with understatement about the colt’s win by any margin jockey Victor Espinoza could have pleased in
 1:47 4/5, which was less than one second off the stakes record.



In other Haskell news:


Ø      Keen Ice, who closed strongly and finished well to take second for Donegal Racing, looked happy, healthy and bright-eyed in his stall. It was unclear when he would depart to rejoin trainer Dale Romans.


Ø      Competitive Edge and Dontbetwithbruno came back fine from their efforts, according to Anthony Sciametta, trainer Todd Pletcher’s assistant. The two were scheduled to depart by van Tuesday morning and rejoin the stable atSaratoga.


  • Gary and Mary West’s Top Clearance, who wound up fifth, also was fine after his effort. “That horse (American Pharoah) was just too much horse for him,” said trainer Wayne Catalano.


  • David Melin, Leon Ellman and Laurie Plesa’s Mr. Jordan was also reported to have come out of the race fine for trainer Eddie Plesa, Jr.


  • Ralph M. Evans and WinStar Farm’s Upstart headed back to Saratoga on the evening after the race.

    Source: Monmouth Park






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