Casse Considers Sending Sir Winston ‘Straight To Dubai’ After Big Allowance Effort

Tracy Farmer’s Sir Winston won his first race since capturing last year’s Grade 1 Belmont Stakes, rallying from last-of-seven to capture his 4-year-old debut in a one-mile allowance race on Friday at Aqueduct.

The “Test of the Champion” victor made his first start in more than six months when he finished last-of-12 at one mile over yielding Fair Grounds turf on December 28. In his first main-track appearance since the Belmont Stakes, Sir Winston impressed trainer Mark Casse when earning a 94 Beyer Speed Figure for his 2 ¼-length win over Musical America.

“He came out of it good. I was extremely pleased with his effort because I thought it maybe might have been a little short,” Casse said. “He didn’t get much out of his first race back off the long layoff, so I was a little concerned. He ran beyond my expectations. I know it was an allowance race, but he beat a lot of nice horses and did it convincingly. So, if he’s healthy, I think he’ll have a great 2020.”

The start to the campaign could facilitate a quick return to top-level competition, with the Group 1, $12 million Dubai World Cup on March 28 at Meydan remaining the target, Casse said. Sir Winston could make another start at Aqueduct before targeting the world’s second-richest horse race, with the $100,000 Bernardini at 1 5/16 miles on February 29 remaining a possibility as a tune-up, though Casse said he remains more inclined to use his win as a springboard to the 2,000-meter Dubai World Cup.

“We’re looking at the Bernardini and we’re definitely looking at the Dubai World Cup, so we’ll look at either going straight to Dubai. My thought was that the Bernardini could set him up well,” said Casse. “But now, I’m not saying the Bernardini is completely out, but I’m leaning more towards just going straight to Dubai since he gave us such a big effort. That’s something Mr. Farmer and I will talk about, and we’ll see how it plays out.”

Live Oak Plantation’s Old Chestnut, who has made five of his six career starts on turf, will be moved to the main track in his 3-year-old bow in Saturday’s Jimmy Winkfield.

After finishing out of the money in three consecutive stakes starts, Old Chestnut will compete in the seven-furlong sprint in his first start on dirt and first non-turf appearance since running fifth over Woodbine’s synthetic surface on July 7 in his career debut.

“He’s trained well enough over the dirt and there aren’t a whole lot of options out there right now on the grass,” Casse said. “We wanted to go ahead and find out sooner rather than later about the dirt and see how he does. We need to find out where we are. If he’s just turf, it’s better to find out now.”

The son of Speightstown broke his maiden at second asking on August 9 at Woodbine and won his first stakes at the same track in the Ontario Racing on September 15.

Gary Barber’s Got Stormy, who won two Grade 1s in 2019 and finished second to Uni in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Mile, continues to train forwardly as she prepares for her first start of her 5-year-old season in the Grade 3, $175,000 Endeavour on Saturday at Tampa Bay Downs.

The Get Stormy mare won the Grade 1 Fourstardave in August at Saratoga Race Course and capped her season with a three-quarter-length victory in the Grade 1 Matriarch on December 1 at Del Mar.

Got Stormy finished second in three graded stakes last year, including runner-up to Beau Recall in the Grade 2 Churchill Distaff Turf Mile. She finished a half-length back to El Tormenta in the Grade 1 Woodbine Mile and 1 ½-lengths back to fellow mare and eventual Eclipse Award Female Turf-winner Uni in the Breeders’ Cup Mile on November 2 at Santa Anita.

“She’s something special,” Casse said.

The post Casse Considers Sending Sir Winston ‘Straight To Dubai’ After Big Allowance Effort appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

DYFD Winter - 300x90

Comments are closed.