Win Win Win gears up for a likely turf campaign in 2020

Win Win Win gears up for a likely turf campaign in 2020
Photo: Eclipse Sportswire

Win Win Win, a veteran of last year’s Triple Crown series, is on the comeback trail. The Live Oak Plantation homebred posted his second work at Fair Hill on Saturday, breezing five furlongs in 1:03.40.

While noting with a releasing laugh, “I don’t have plans for anybody” given the coronavirus pandemic, trainer Michael Trombetta said Win Win Win -- who finished off the board in last year’s Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes -- could make a start later this spring. He added the son of Hat Trick could have a turf-centric campaign in 2020.

“Realistically he’s six weeks away from competition,” Trombetta said Saturday by telephone. “That kind of falls into place with what’s going on in the world, so I’ll just hold the course.”

Win Win Win, who has not started since winning the Manilla Stakes on turf at Belmont Park on July 4, spent the winter at Live Oak Plantation in Ocala, Fla. before being sent north to join Trombetta’s string at Fair Hill about three weeks ago. Trombetta is pleased with what he’s seen of Win Win Win as a 4-year-old.

“He looks fantastic,” Trombetta said. “He’s grown up a bit, matured some. I’m very happy with him.”

Trombetta added Win Win Win’s lengthy layoff was not due to any physical problem, but rather a reaction to the general rigors of the Triple Crown trail.

“It was one of those situations where he had done two-thirds of the Triple Crown, he ran in the Manila, and he had just kind of had enough at that point,” Trombetta said. “He’d been in training well over a year. As hard as it was to do, we knew it was probably the proper thing to do to stop on him a bit and give him some time. We gave him a full 90 days or better and a chance to regroup. We wanted the goal to have him ready by springtime.” 

Win Win Win debuted in early November of his 2-year-old year and won his first two starts before closing out the season with runner-up effort in the Heft Stakes, all at Laurel Park. When returning as a sophomore, Win Win Win set a Tampa Bay Downs track record when blazing to victory in the seven-furlong Pascal Stakes in a time of 1:20.89. He followed that by running third in the Tampa Bay Derby (G2) and second in the Blue Grass (G2) at Keeneland to earn a berth in the Kentucky Derby. 

Following the Preakness, Win Win Win was switched to grass for the Manilla where he finished with a flurry to win by a half-length. Trombetta came away impressed enough with the effort to think the colt could ultimately prove better on the grass.

"I must say, it took a while before we got him on the turf because of how well he did on dirt and being involved in the Triple Crown races, but that turf race kind of resonated with me," Trombetta said. "He really impressed me that day. I do believe he’ll find his way back on the grass and be pretty darn good at it.

As for now, everything remains on the table for Win Win Win.

“He’s a track-record setter on dirt and one-for-one on turf,” Trombetta said. “So I think we have some options.”

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