Maracuja Maturing Quickly, Preparing For Kentucky Oaks At Belmont

Trainer Rob Atras said Beach Haven Thoroughbreds’ Maracuja will breeze Saturday on the Belmont Park dirt training track in preparation for the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks on April 30 at Churchill Downs.

“She’ll work on Saturday morning and if everything goes good and she comes out of it well, she’ll leave for Kentucky on Sunday afternoon,” said Atras. “She’ll have a half-mile breeze. I don’t think she needs anything too serious. She puts a lot into her gallops and it’s not like she’s had a ton of time between races.”

The third time was the charm for the daughter of third-crop sire Honor Code, who broke her maiden sprinting 6 ½-furlongs by 3 3/4-lengths on Feb. 21 at Aqueduct over a good track.

Last out, Maracuja stretched out to two turns for the first time, closing from last-of-6 off a moderate pace to finish second to undefeated Search Results in the nine-furlong Grade 3 Gazelle on April 3 at the Big A.

“We were expecting her to run well, but we were asking a lot of her to come out of a maiden sprint,” said Atras. “I was happy with the way she settled. Unfortunately, it was a slower pace and that wasn’t to our advantage, but the winner was going to be tough to beat no matter what. I was really pleased with the way she finished up going two turns for the first time. She was really determined.”

Atras said the $200,000 purchase at the 2019 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Select Yearling Sale has progressed well with race experience.

“She’s grown up physically. Not necessarily that she’s gotten bigger, but after a few races she’s toughened up a little bit,” said Atras. “She was a little bit soft last year and we had to stop on her a couple times. She’s more relaxed in her works and really all business. Mentally, she’s quite mature for a young filly. She really has come a long way.”

The post Maracuja Maturing Quickly, Preparing For Kentucky Oaks At Belmont appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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