Roddy Valente, RAP Racing and West Point Thoroughbreds’ Gulfstream Park Oaks (Grade II) winnerCoach Rocks worked a half-mile in :48.60 Saturday morningat Churchill Downs in preparation for the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI) on Friday, May 4.
“She looked great this morning,” trainer Dale Romanssaid. “She came out of the (Gulfstream Park) Oaks well and she’s been training great at Churchill since we got her back here. The track has been a bit fast the last two weeks but it looked good this morning.”
Coach Rocks breezed through opening eighth-mile splits of :11.80, :23.80 and :36.20, before galloping out five furlongs in 1:01.80 and six furlongs in 1:16.20, according to Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols.
Prior to her score in the Gulfstream Park Oaks, Coach Rocks took seven tries broke she her maiden on Feb. 14 at Gulfstream Park.
“We’ve always had high hopes for her,” Romans said. “We ran into some back luck in her previous races but she’s always run well and continued to do so as the distances got longer.”
Coach Rocks made headlines in the Gulfstream Park Oaks not only for her victory but her part-owner, former University of Louisville men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino, who races under the nom de course RAP Racing.
“I’m not sure if he’ll make it to the Oaks or not,” Romans said. “I would love to have him here.”
Also on the Saturday work tab with a half-mile move in :47.20 was Carl Moore Management LLC’s Rachel Alexandra (GII) runner-up Classy Act, who is currently on the outside at No. 15 on the Road to the Kentucky Oaks Leaderboard.
Coach Rocks (Barn 4) and Classy Act (Barn 23) are joined at Churchill Downs by fellow Oaks contendersChocolate Martini (trainer Tom Amoss, Barn 29), Monomoy Girl (Brad Cox, Barn 22) and Patrona Margarita (Calhoun, Barn 23).