Romans Breezes Both
By Dick Downey
Updated 9:53 a.m. ET and 3:20 p.m. ET
Today at Churchill Downs, Brody's Cause worked for the second time toward the Belmont Stakes since the Kentucky Derby.
The Dale Romans trainee worked a stamina-building mile in 1:42.00 (1/1), breezing. Track clockers caught his splits in 37.60, 49.80, 1:02.40 and 1:28.80. He galloped out 1 1/8 mile in 1:56.40. The move began at the 7/8 mile pole.
On May 22, the son of Giant's Causeway breezed five furlong in 1.01:00 (8/34) on a track rated good at Churchill Downs. He finished seventh in the May 7 Kentucky Derby.
“He didn’t have one concern other than that he got into a little bit of trouble,” Romans said. "He finished up well, so these last five weeks I’ve been training him like he wants to go a mile-and-a-half and have been trying to teach him how to do it, so today’s work was spectacular. He just went around there real easy. Brody has already proven to be the best of the two so far...but Cherry is taking a step forward. It’ll be interesting; I don’t know which one we’re going to like the best. Maybe we’ll pull off a Black-Eyed Susan.”
Cherry Wine, whose Preakness runner-up effort was only eight days ago, was sent out by Romans to work four furlongs. He was timed in 49.60 (44/80), breezing, with splits of 12.60 and :37.40 and out five furlongs in 1:03.00.
Romans had Cherry Wine break off at the 3/8 mile pole for the move.
“I normally wouldn’t work a horse back in a week but he’s been doing so well,” Romans said. “Cherry Wine will run on concrete, he’ll run on mud, he’ll run on gravel, it doesn’t make any difference. It wasn’t the mud that moved him up, he’s a good horse. He’s a good horse that’ll run on anything. He’ll go the mile-and-a-half. He’s probably bred to go the mile-and-a-half better than anyone in the race.”
Tammy Fox was up for both workouts.
“I wanted a lot of heavy lifting done before we go up,” Romans said. “We want to get an easy work next week up there and just back off a little bit and get them used to being out on the racetrack for as long as it was going to take for them to go a mile-and-a-half around those big turns. You never know what kind of track you’re going to get. It’s either going to be really sandy or if you get natural rain it could be tight. “Allen Jerkens once told me, ‘They’ll naturally go a mile-and-an-eighth, but you have to teach them to go a mile-and-a-half and that’s what we’re working on this morning. You just got to get them mentally ready to be focused for as long as it takes to run a mile-and-a-half.”
And what would that be?
“Keep them on the racetrack for a while,” Romans said.
“I’ll put them on the lead if there’s no speed. What’s the difference?” Romans said. “These horses will do anything. They’ll take any cue from their jockeys. We took Cherry Wine way further back than we normally would’ve just rolling the dice with those horses in the race that they were going to go fast and collapse. If they didn’t, we probably wouldn’t get anything, we’d be stuck in no man’s land. That’s what I didn’t want to happen. I didn’t want to get stuck fifth all the way around there, I wanted to be 30 out of it and then I gave the instructions to ride like Mine That Bird in the Kentucky Derby and that’s exactly what he did. Only thing he didn’t do was make sure he caught the last one.”