Thursday: Business As Usual, After the Draw

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS — The fields for the International Festival of Racing were finalized yesterday.

Picks and Ponderings saw the same sets of horses who worked out Wednesday, plus a few more domestic and international horses.  Domestically, the full contingents of both Chad Brown and Bill Mott came out to run, as well as Gerald Aschinger’s LOTS O’ LEX and Alan Goldberg’s FORCE THE PASS.  The Irish contingent of CARLA BIANCA, HIGHLAND REEL, and WEDDING VOW made their first appearances today.  One more contingent of European shippers remains in quarantine; they include GOLDSTREAM, LACY, and WAKE FOREST.

The training track was closed today, so all horses trained on the main oval. However, three runners schooled in the paddock – SECRET GESTURE, MAVERICK WAVE, and BELGIAN BILL – before going out onto the polytrack. As on Tuesday and Wednesday, defending Beverly D champion EURO CHARLINE was the only runner to gallop on the turf; all others restricted their exercise to the main track.  EURO CHARLINE had not gone much faster than a walk on Tuesday and Wednesday; today she galloped at a bit brisker clip, and looked like she was getting on good footing after the ship.

The only Festival runner with a recorded workout today was PANAMA HAT.  Equibase timed the American St. Leger entrant at 40.60 seconds for a three-furlong move over the polytrack.  It was the slowest time of three workers at the distance.

Aside from PANAMA HAT, none of today’s activity was timed and recorded on Equibase’s worktab.  Picks & Ponderings did not record times of workers.

Paul Mazur contributed to this piece.  All photos courtesy of Paul Mazur and Nicolle Neulist.

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