Musical Romance, the 2011 Eclipse Award-winning champion female sprinter and Grade 1 Princess Rooney winner, had a light gallop over the Santa Anita main track Tuesday morning as she continues preparations for her title defense in the Filly & Mare Sprint on Saturday.
“She’s been going out to the track daily and she seems to like it here,” Freddie Guzman, assistant to trainer Bill Kaplan said outside barn 69 at Santa Anita. “But she runs on turf, dirt, synthetic, anything, so we had no reason to think she wouldn’t like it here.”
The daughter of Concorde’s Tune arrived at Santa Anita on Saturday after an uneventful two-day trek that began with a van ride from her home base at Calder on Thursday.
“It was a long trip, but everything went very smooth,” Guzman said.
“We had to go from Florida to Kentucky to catch our flight, and I’m just glad we left when we did,” Guzman added, noting the travel disruptions plaguing much of the country as a result of Hurricane Sandy. “And (trainer) Bill (Kaplan) had no trouble getting out and he’ll be here later today.”
Scheduled to pass through the sales ring as hip 118 at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale, the Filly & Mare Sprint will be the 41st and final start of Musical Romance’s career, giving added significance to the race for those involved with the mare.
“It’s such a big race, not only because she won it last year, but because this is most likely her last race,” Guzman said. “I mean, you never know what will happen, maybe she doesn’t go for the right price at the sale and comes back to us, but we’re preparing for this to be her last start. And after all she’s done for us, we want her to go out with a big race.”
Musical Romance drew post 8 for the Filly & Mare Sprint at Monday’s post position draw.
“At one point, there were only a few spots left and the rail was one of them,” Guzman said. “I was starting to get worried, but then they called the one and it wasn’t us and we were last out of the box and eight is fine with me.”
Speak Logistics, winner of the $300,000 In Reality Division of the Florida Stallion Stakes in his last start, galloped on the main track at Santa Anita Tuesday morning, three days after arriving in California and four days in advance of a start in the Juvenile.
“The trip was good; the only problem was the temperature change,” Frankie Perez, assistant to trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. said. “We had to go to Louisville from Calder and stay overnight before flying out, and when we left Calder it was 80 degrees and when we got to Louisville it was 40. But that was more a problem for me. I think the colt liked it.”
According to Perez, the son of High Cotton has taken well to the Santa Anita main track, leaving the longtime assistant optimistic about the colt’s chances on Saturday.
“We took him out the last two days right after the track reopens and he really seems to like it here,” Perez said. “We know he’s a good horse, he showed us that in his last race. On Saturday we’ll get to see just how good he is.”
Perez also reported that Plesa is scheduled to arrive in California on Wednesday.