Cox Trainees Complete Final Breeders’ Cup Workouts

October 28, 2023

Brad Cox (Keeneland Photo)

Churchill Downs Press Release

LOUISVILLE, Ky.— Trainer Brad Cox’s Breeders’ Cup contingent is all based at Churchill Downs and seven of the eight pre-entrants completed their final workouts Saturday prior to the World Championship event Nov. 3-4 at Santa Anita.

Here are the official times for each of Cox’s Breeders’ Cup contenders: A Mo Reay (five furlongs, :59.40); Caravel (four furlongs, :51.60); Idiomatic (five furlongs, :59.60); Matareya (five furlongs, 1:00.80); Saudi Crown (six furlongs, 1:12.20); Wet Paint (five furlongs, 1:01); and Zozos (five furlongs, :59.80).

Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) contender Saudi Crown was among the first horses to work Saturday morning and breezed outside Distaff (GI) contender A Mo Reay. Owned by FMQ Stables, the speedy Saudi Crown, who had jockey Florent Geroux in the saddle, started his move about two lengths behind A Mo Reay, who was ridden by Edvin Vargas, and finished slightly in front at the wire.

“We put him on the inside last week with A Mo Reay and we put him on the outside this week,” Cox said. “I’ve loved what we’ve seen from him since the Pennsylvania Derby. A Mo Reay is a good work horse and he’s gotten a lot out of his works. By the way he’s doing now here in Kentucky, I’m confident he’ll run a big race in the Classic.”

After Saudi Crown and A Mo Reay’s work, Juddmonte’s Distaff contender Idiomatic breezed with exercise rider Kelvin Perez in the irons. The 4-year-old daughter of Curlin began her move at the 4 ½-furlong marker and worked through the wire to the 7 ½-furlong pole.

Godolphin’s Filly and Mare Sprint (GI) runner Matareya had a similar move to Idiomatic where she broke off at the 4 ½- furlong pole and worked through the wire. The six-time winner had some unexpected company when she came upon a Phil Bauer trainee who was working a half-mile. Jockey Flavien Prat, who was aboard Matareya, kept her inside the Bauer runner.

Following the 7:30 a.m. track renovation break, Godolphin’s Distaff contender Wet Paint worked with Prat in the irons and stayed inside stablemate Highland Falls. Like the rest of the Cox runners, Wet Paint started her work at the 4 ½-furlong pole and worked past the finish line.

Just following her work, Barry and Joni Butzow’s Dirt Mile (GI) contender Zozos breezed with Geroux in the saddle.

“He’s on his game right now,” Cox said. “I think he’s more on it right now than he was in the Ack Ack. I’m really happy with how he worked today.”

There was a special training session Saturday morning for horses pre-entered in any Breeders’ Cup turf races which allowed Sprint (GI) contender Caravel to work on her preferred surface. The champion Pennsylvania-bred worked with Perez in the saddle, who will travel with the Cox contingent to Santa Anita on Monday.

The eighth member of Cox’s Breeders’ Cup army is Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) contender Timberlake, who worked five furlongs in :59.80 on Friday.

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