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Breeders' Cup 2017

Forever Together Leads Diana Workers

Four fillies and mares targeting Saturday’s Grade 1 Diana worked out on the Oklahoma Turf Course Monday morning.

 

With exercise rider Danielle Hodsdon aboard, Forever Together prepared for her attempt to win the Diana for the third consecutive year with a 59.60 bullet breeze around dogs.

 

“I’ll say it was a successful operation,” said Jonathan Sheppard, who trains the gray 6-year-old mare for George Strawbridge’s Augustin Stable.

 

Forever Together is winless in five starts since winning last year’s Diana but remains in good form, having never finished outside the trifecta during that span. She has raced twice in 2010, finishing second in the Grade 2 Jenny Wiley at Keeneland in April and the Grade 1 Gamely at Hollywood Park in May.

 

Following her runner-up effort in the Gamely and prior to her arrival in Saratoga, Forever Together posted four workouts at Presque Isle Downs in Pennsylvania.

 

“Today was her fourth morning of training here,” noted Sheppard. “I took her to Presque Isle because we had a drought on the farm. She seems to enjoy training on the Tapeta.”

 

Also breezing five furlongs were Proviso and My Princess Jess, the first- and third-place finishers in the Grade 1 Just a Game on the Belmont Stakes undercard. Proviso negotiated five furlongs in 1:03.40, while My Princess Jess covered the distance two-fifths of a second faster than the Just a Game winner.

 

“I was real happy with it,” said trainer Bill Mott following Proviso’s breeze.

 

Phola, second in the Just a Game, worked four furlongs on the Oklahoma Turf in 48.35, handily.

 

“Phola did a solid maintenance work and acts like she’s ready to go,” said trainer Todd Pletcher. “I think [the Diana field] is what you would expect in a Grade 1 race at Saratoga – it’s a somewhat compact field, but there are some very, very talented fillies in there.”

 

Shared Account and Dynaslew – first and second in the Grade 3 All Along at Colonial Downs June 19 – are also probable for the Diana, according Byrnes.

 

 

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