Rocketry Winning the Temperance Hill in September
Centennial Farms’ Rocketry, a last-out winner of the 1 5/8-mile Grade 2 Thoroughbred Aftercare Alliance on November 6 at Keeneland, is enjoying some downtime at the farm in Middleburg, Virginia.
Trainer Jimmy Jerkens said the now 7-year-old Hard Spun horse will return for another campaign.
“He had a good season,” said Jerkens. “There’s not much for him in the winter time, so we’re giving him a couple months off at the farm.”
Centennial Farms’ Mihos, a 5-year-old Cairo Prince horse, worked a half-mile in 49.77 on the Belmont dirt training track on December 27.
With a record of 14-3-1-3, Mihos finished fourth in the seven-furlong Grade 3 Bold Ruler Handicap on October 31 on a muddy track at Belmont and was second last out on December 11 in a seven-furlong optional-claiming sprint at Aqueduct.
“There’s a mile allowance race next week that we’re aiming for. We’re hoping for some improvement with him,” said Jerkens.
Jerkens said Shortleaf Stable’s Rift Valley will look for additional ground after earning a 69 Beyer when rallying from ninth to score by 1 ½-lengths at second asking in a seven furlong state-bred maiden sprint on December 20 at the Big A.
“He wants to go further. We’re looking to stretch him out and then we’ll probably try turf when that opens up, too,” said Jerkens.
Bred by Jonathan Thorne, the 4-year-old Pioneerof the Nile colt was a $400,000 purchase at the 2018 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Preferred New York-Bred Yearling Sale.
Chiefswood Stables’ homebred Weyburn, a 3-year-old Ontario-bred son of Pioneerof the Nile, garnered a 67 Beyer when graduating at third asking over a sloppy Aqueduct main track on December 5 when sprinting seven furlongs.
Jerkens said he had considered the Jerome for Weyburn but had to change course.
“We were thinking about the Jerome, but he got sick and that was the end of that,” said Jerkens. “We’ll look for the next ‘a other than’ for him.”
Out of the A.P. Indy mare Sunday Affair, Weyburn is a half-brother to the versatile multiple graded stakes winner Yorkton.
The unraced King James, a sophomore son of Nyquist of the multiple stakes winning Unbridled’s Song mare Inspired, worked a half-mile in 49.79 on December 29 on the Belmont dirt training track.
While Inspired was a turf sprint specialist, Jerkens said King James will get his shot on both surfaces.
“He’s out of a filly that did all her best running sprinting on the turf,” said Jerkens. “He’s doing good but he’s still a ways off. We’ll see what he can do on the dirt, but I’d imagine the turf will be his thing given his mother. The Nyquists like the turf.”
NYRA Press/ Photo- Chelsea Durand