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Barn Notes - April 26: Daisy Devine, Plum Pretty, Holy Heavens Work
ARIENZA – Robert and Lawana Low’s Fantasy (GII) runner-up Arienza visited the paddock and then galloped a mile and half Tuesday morning under exercise rider Eva Jansson.
Trainer Danny Peitz, who is also considering the $100,000 Eight Belles Presented by ACS (GIII) on May 6 for Arienza, plans to work the filly on Friday.
BOUQUET BOOTH/STREET STORM – Right Time Racing’s Bouquet Booth and Street Storm walked the shedrow at Barn 22.
Street Storm is scheduled to work on the turf Thursday and Bouquet Booth on the main track Friday for trainer Steve Margolis.
DAISY DEVINE – James Miller’s Daisy Devine indicated her readiness for the Kentucky Oaks (GI) by working a bullet five furlongs in :59.60 under jockey James Graham. The track was labeled as “sloppy” when Daisy Devine worked shortly after 6 a.m.
Working in company with Skylord from the Jinks Fires barn, Daisy Devine clicked off fractions of :12.20, :24.60, :35.80, :47.60 and galloped six furlongs in 1:14 and seven-eighths in 1:29.60. Daisy Devine started two lengths in back of Skylord and finished on even terms in posting the best time of 25 at the distance for the morning.
“She handled the track well,” said Graham, who was aboard Daisy Devine for her victory in the Fair Grounds Oaks (GII). “Everything she does is effortless."
The work was the first at Churchill Downs for Daisy Devine, who had shipped over from Keeneland last week by trainer Andrew McKeever.
“She was at Keeneland last fall and never was here,” McKeever said. “Next week, she’ll blow out probably Monday or Tuesday.”
Daisy Devine beat only one horse in her racing debut at Keeneland, but won second time out at Fair Grounds for a $30,000 claiming tag.
“She is just getting better and better,” McKeever said. “You never thought last November that she would be where she is. Her first start, she was just lost and didn’t know what she was doing. She was a nervous filly and I thought she would be live for $30,000. She gained her confidence (in winning that race) and kept improving.”
DELIGHTFUL MARY – John Oxley’s Delightful Mary galloped a mile and a half before the renovation break under exercise rider Melanie Giddings.
Trainer Mark Casse is scheduled to be in Louisville on Friday when the filly is scheduled to work.
HOLY HEAVENS – K.K. and Vilasini Jayaraman’s Holy Heavens worked five furlongs over a track labeled as “good” in 1:03.60 under jockey Kent Desormeaux.
Fractions for the work accomplished after the renovation break were :13.20, :26.20, :38.40, :50.60 and out six furlongs in 1:19. It was the 21st fastest time of 25 at the distance.
The Jayaramans were present for the work, the first time the couple were back at Churchill Downs since Summer Bird ran sixth in the 2009 Kentucky Derby. Five weeks later Summer Bird won the Belmont Stakes (GI) under Desormeaux.
“Let’s do this again,” Desormeaux said as he greeted the couple at the barn before the work.
After the work, trainer Benard Chatters was satisfied with the morning activity.
“That was fine. That’s how she works, usually around 1:03,” Chatters said. “Kent said she handled the track fine.”
JOYFUL VICTORY – Fox Hill Farms’ Joyful Victory walked the shedrow at Barn 43 a day after working five furlongs in 1:01.80.
“She didn’t take a drink of water (after the work),” said Cindy Jones, wife of trainer Larry Jones. “She never got out of a gallop yesterday; the speed work will be next time (on Sunday).”
KATHMANBLU – Five D Thoroughbreds and Wind River Stables’ Kathmanblu galloped a mile and a half before the renovation break under exercise rider Will Aldana.
LILACS AND LACE – James Covello, Judy Hicks and Kathryn Nikkel’s Lilacs and Lace, winner of the Central Bank Ashland Stakes (GI) in her most recent start, galloped under exercise rider Eliel DeJesus after the renovation break.
Trained by John Terranova, Lilacs and Lace arrived at Churchill Downs from Keeneland on Monday afternoon.
Javier Castellano has the Oaks riding assignment.
PLUM PRETTY – Peachtree Stable’s Plum Pretty, winner of the $200,000 Sunland Oaks by a dazzling 25 lengths, tuned up for her bid for the 137th Kentucky Oaks with a seven-furlong workout during the training period of Kentucky Oaks and Kentucky Derby conteders.
The Bob Baffert-trained Plum Pretty worked in company with older stablemate Gilded Gem and completed the distance under jockey Martin Garcia over a good track in 1:28.40.
The workout was marred when Gilded Gem took a bad step just past the finish line and fell, sending exercise rider Peter Hutton tumbling to the track. Hutton was not injured, but Golden Gem suffered a fatal leg injury and was euthanized. Plum Pretty was clear of her workmate at the time of the mishap.
Her fractional splits were :12.20, :24.40, :37.20, :48.80 and six furlongs in 1:14.80.
“She really impressed me with the way she worked,” said Garcia. “She’s been working good all the time, but today the track was kind of muddy, but she didn’t care. She didn’t even get tired. It was perfect.”
“The filly is doing really good,” Baffert said. “She skipped over that and she wasn’t exhausted when she came back. It was a very demanding track.”
Gilded Gem was being pointed by Baffert to the $300,000 Humana Distaff (GI) on Kentucky Derby Day. She won the Las Flores (GIII) at Santa Anita in her most recent start and was runner-up to Switch in the Santa Monica (GI).
R HEAT LIGHTNING – E. Paul Robsham Stable’s winner of the Gulfstream Oaks (GII) and likely favorite for the Kentucky Oaks galloped under exercise rider Hector Ramos, who guided the strong-willed filly over a course rated good during the training session for Derby and Oaks contenders.
“She’s a tough filly, Pletcher said. “She trains consistently enthusiastic every day and I suppose I would be concerned if we didn’t see that from her. But she had a good work (on Saturday), came out of it well and, so far, everything’s on schedule.”
John Velazquez will ride the daughter of Trippi in Kentucky Oaks 137.
R Heat Lightning’s final work for the Kentucky Oaks is scheduled for Saturday.
ST. JOHN’S RIVER – Dede McGehee’s St. John’s River galloped a mile and seven-eighths after the renovation break under exercise rider Robert Wright.
Trainer Andy Leggio plans to work the Fair Grounds Oaks (GII) runner-up on Thursday with jockey Rosie Napravnik up.
SUAVE VOIR FAIRE – Fleur De Lis Racing’s Suave Voir Faire visited the starting gate with blinkers on and then galloped Tuesday morning at the nearby Highpointe Training Center under exercise rider Frederick Carmouche.
Trainer Speedy Smithwick plans to work Suave Voir Faire on Friday at Highpointe. Suave Voir Faire ran third behind probable Kentucky Oaks rival Kathmanblu in last fall’s Golden Rod (GII).