American Pharoah 'just cruising' in final workout

Sat Oct 3, 2015 6:11pm EDT
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(Reuters) - Triple Crown winner American Pharoah was "just cruising", said trainer Bob Baffert, as the 3-year-old completed his final Santa Anita workout on Saturday before he ends his stellar career at this month's Breeders' Cup Classic.

With Martin Garcia on board, American Pharoah breezed through five furlongs in 59.80 on the iconic race track in Arcadia, California, in a workout brought forward by 24 hours because of rain forecast for Sunday.

"He looked good," Hall of Fame trainer Baffert, 62, told a group of reporters. "I've never seen him look bad working.

"He went around there like he always does, just cruising. He did it the right way. He did it without any effort. He's right on schedule.

"I was going to work him tomorrow, but we just moved it up a day because of the weather."

Santa Anita-based American Pharoah is preparing for the $5 million Breeders' Cup Classic, which will be run at Keeneland in Lexington, Kentucky, on Oct. 31, though Baffert was not yet certain when the horse would be shipped there.

"I don't have a ship date right now," he said. "I was going to maybe ship him Monday, but we postponed that. We"re going to wait."

Asked whether American Pharoah would be sent directly to Keeneland or Churchill Downs, Baffert replied: "We don't know yet."

American Pharoah entered the pantheon of U.S. thoroughbred racing's all-time greats by winning the Belmont Stakes wire-to-wire in June to become the first horse to capture the coveted 'Triple Crown' in nearly four decades.   Continued...

Jun 4, 2015; Elmont, NY, USA; American Pharaoh ridden by exercise rider Jorge Alvarez gallops the front stretch during a morning workout in preparation for the 2015 Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports