Max Player Works ‘Really Well,’ Covers Swift Five Furlongs In Company At Churchill Downs

George Hall and SportBLX Thoroughbred’s $1 million Travers Stakes (Grade I) third-place finisher Max Player recorded a swift five-furlong move in :59.60 Monday morning at Churchill Downs in preparation for the $3 million Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (GI) on Saturday, Sept. 5.

Max Player, who was recently transferred to the care of Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen from New York-based conditioner Linda Rice, worked at 7:30 a.m. (all times Eastern) during the exclusive 15-minute training window for Kentucky Derby and Oaks contenders. Max Player, who breezed with jockey Florent Geroux up, began his work two lengths behind stablemate Allege and worked through fractions of :23.80 and :35.80. Max Player finished even with his workmate at the wire and continued to gallop out in front through six furlongs in 1:12.60.

“He worked really well behind his workmate,” said Geroux, who was filling in Monday for Max Player’s Derby rider Ricardo Santana Jr. “I think he will like the 1 ¼-mile distance in the Derby. I was working the horse this morning because Ricardo is still at Saratoga. Steve has given me many great opportunities in my career so I always try to help when he needs me. I will be on (trainer) Bob Baffert’s horse Thousand Words in the Derby.”

Also training during the special training window was Victoria’s Ranch’s King Guillermo, who galloped 1 ½ miles under exercise rider Edgar Medina for trainer Juan Avila. The son of Uncle Mo is scheduled to have his final move before the Kentucky Derby on Saturday morning.

Raymond Daniels and Wayne Scherr’s former $100,000 claim Necker Island returned to the track following his walk day on Sunday with an easy jog under exercise rider Hillary Hartman. Necker Island, trained by Chris Hartman, is tentatively scheduled to work on Saturday with jockey Miguel Mena aboard.

Prior to the Kentucky Derby and Oaks training window, Lloyd Madison Farm’s Major Fed galloped 1 ½ miles at 5:15 a.m. under exercise rider Margarito Fierro. Trained by Greg Foley, the $300,000 Indiana Derby (GIII) runner-up is scheduled to have his final work on Friday or Saturday. Approximately 45 minutes following Major Fed’s gallop, West Point Thoroughbreds and Pearl Racing’s $600,000 Arkansas Derby (GI) third-place finisher Winning Impression had a light 1 ½-mile gallop with trainer Dallas Stewart’s exercise rider Emerson Chavez in the saddle.

Jim Bakke and Gerald Isbister’s $200,000 Ellis Park Derby runner-up Attachment Rate had a scheduled walk day following his half-mile move in :48.60 Sunday morning.

On the Longines Kentucky Oaks front, Mark and Nancy Stanley’s graded stakes placed Tempers Rising galloped 1 ½ miles at 6:30 a.m. under Chavez. Also making an appearance Monday morning at Churchill Downs was Flurry Racing Stables, Qatar Racing Limited and Big Aut Farms’ $200,000 Indiana Oaks (GIII) winner Shedaresthedevil, who jogged with exercise rider Edvin Vargas up for trainer Brad Cox. Her stablemate, Juddmonte Farms’ $600,000 Alabama Stakes (GI) runner-up Bonny South, galloped 1 ½ miles under exercise rider Gustavo Abrego.

The post Max Player Works ‘Really Well,’ Covers Swift Five Furlongs In Company At Churchill Downs appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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