Back From Dubai, Killybegs Captain Has Oaklawn’s Count Fleet Sprint On Radar

Curragh Stables’ Killybegs Captain worked a sharp half-mile in 47.96 Saturday on the dirt training track at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y., and trainer John Terranova said the graded-stakes winner is under consideration for the Grade 3, $350,000 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap, a six-furlong sprint for 4-year-olds and up slated for April 18 at Oaklawn Park.

“We breezed him to see where he’s at and it went really well,” said Terranova. “We’re taking a look at our options with one being the Count Fleet at Oaklawn in a couple of weeks as something we’re considering.”

Killybegs Captain was posting his first breeze back after returning from Dubai where he was a contender for the Dubai Golden Shaheen, which was slated for March 28 on the canceled Dubai World Cup undercard.

“That race [the Count Fleet] was one we would have been considering before the trip to Dubai,” said Terranova. “We’re considering now if it’s something we want to do. He’s in great shape and had a great breeze today. It was a nice, easy work for him.

“He came back really well from the trip,” added Terranova. “He went over there in great shape and came back that way. He looks great. We were really excited about the race in Dubai. We had him ready. I really think we had the horse [to win it].”

Last out, the Kentucky-bred horse made his seasonal debut by defending his title in the Pelican on Feb. 15 at Tampa Bay Downs, an effort that matched a career-best 97 Beyer Speed Figure.

“He’s a big, strong horse and he’s matured into a real strong sprinter,” said Terranova. “He came back in the Pelican and he was very impressive in that. He looks like he’s better this year than he was last year.”

The 6-year-old Mizzen Mast gray made the grade in the Grade 3 Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash in September at Laurel Park. The De Francis was the highlight of a solid campaign that included third-place finishes in the Grade 2 John A. Nerud at Belmont, won by Promises Fulfilled, and the Grade 1 Forego at Saratoga, which was captured by Mitole.

“We took some shots and he certainly held his own in a lot of those races,” said Terranova. “We were finally able to get the De Francis win for him, which I thought he deserved to take one of those top sprints down. He didn’t have to beat the likes of Mitole that day, but they’re not around this year and he’s come back really well.

“We’re excited,” continued Terranova. “We’ll try to keep him as good as he is right now and whenever we resume, wherever it might be, hopefully he’ll be on his game like he is at the moment.”

Stan the Man, who boasts a record of 22-6-6-2 with purse earnings of $406,374, finished sixth last out in the Stymie on March 7 at the Big A. The 6-year-old Broken Vow gelding, who ran fifth in the Jazil on January 25, won three-of-six starts last year including a score in the Queens County at Aqueduct.

Owned by Long Lake Stable, Stan the Man is currently training at Belmont.

“He’s doing fine. I’m not too sure what happened in his last couple of races, but he’s come out of it well,” said Terranova. “We’ve given him a little bit of a breather with an easy couple weeks. He’s probably a week or so away from a breeze, so hopefully when he’s ready to run, we’ll be up and racing again.”

The post Back From Dubai, Killybegs Captain Has Oaklawn’s Count Fleet Sprint On Radar appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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