ELMONT, N.Y. – William H. Lawrence’s Liveyourbeastlife, the runner-up in the Grade 2 Jim Dandy, worked five-eighths in 59.89 seconds Thursday over the Belmont Park main track in preparation for the Grade 1 Preakness on October 3 at Pimlico Race Course.
Trainer Jorge Abreu said he was pleased with the work, and the Kentucky-bred Ghostzapper colt will be supplemented to the third and final leg of the Triple Crown.
“He breezed really well today,” said Abreu of the breeze in company with New York-bred Freaky Styley [59.80]. “He went in 59 and 4 which is something he’s never done before. We’re going to take a shot.”
The dark bay Ghostzapper colt has improved with added distance capturing a nine-furlong allowance event over older horses on August 12 at Saratoga Race Course ahead of a closing second to Mystic Guide in the nine-furlong Jim Dandy on September 5.
“He didn’t show much early on but every jockey that rode him never came back with a negative thing about him, they would say, ‘this horse wants to run long,’” said Abreu.
Liveyourbeastlife utilized a prominent trip for his August 12 allowance win. After running sixth in the Jim Dandy, jockey Junior Alvarado said the horse struggled from the half-mile to the three-eighths pole.
“He’s really weird. Sometimes he’ll break and take himself back, the past two races he’s been wanting to go,” said Abreu. “Junior admitted he lost position at the half-mile pole and he had to do too much. If he had kept him forwardly placed, he probably would have won the race. He gave him too much to do from the quarter-mile pole on home.”
Abreu said he expects Alvarado to retain the mount for the Preakness. “He’s a horse that needs somebody that knows him,” Abreu said.
Liveyourbeastlife will have his final Preakness prep at Belmont one week from Saturday.
Out of the Kris S. mare Ellie’s Moment, Liveyourbeastlife is a half-brother to Grade 1-winner on turf Time and Motion.
Lawrence Goichman’s New York-bred Myhartblongstodady enjoyed a tremendous summer campaign at Saratoga with a pair of 1 1/16-mile wins on the turf, starting with an optional-claiming tilt on July 30 and a last out one-length score in the Yaddo that garnered a career-best 90 Beyer Speed Figure.
Abreu said the 5-year-old mare, by Scat Daddy and out of the Elusive Quality mare Elusive Rumor, will likely target the Ticonderoga; a 1 1/16-mile turf tilt on October 24 at Belmont as part of Empire Showcase Day. The Grade 3, $100,000 Athenia at the same distance the following day is also under consideration.
“She’s been training really well. She came out of that last race in really good form,” said Abreu. “I’m learning more towards the Ticonderoga against New York-breds instead of running her open right now and try to squeeze in one more win.”
NY Final Furlong Racing Stable, Maspeth Stables and Parkland Thoroughbreds’ multiple stakes winner Espresso Shot breezed a half-mile in 49.04 on September 13 on Big Sandy.
By Mission Impazible and out of the Medaglia d’Oro mare Glory Gold, Espresso Shot captured the 2018 East View against state-breds and won the open Busher Invitational in March 2019 , both on the Big A main track.
Last out, Espresso Shot finished second in a nine-furlong optional-claiming event that came off the turf when racing from a five-month layoff. The versatile filly launched her career in August 2018 with a third in a maiden turf sprint at Saratoga and after graduating in an off-the-turf route at Belmont a month later she was off the board in the Grade 2 Jessamine on the Keenland turf when exiting post 11 in a field of 13.
Abreu said he would like to give the filly another chance on the turf before considering a variety of options for the October 24 Empire Showcase Day card which will offer eight stakes worth $1.2 million.
“I’m looking at an allowance race on the turf on the 25th,” said Abreu. “The first time she ran on the turf, she ran pretty well and then I ran her at Keeneland and she had a bad post. I’m not looking for excuses but I want to give her a shot in the allowance and take it from there. There’s still a long way to go until Empire Showcase Day.”
Klaravich Stables’ Price Talk earned a lofty 86 Beyer when graduating at second asking in a 1 1/16-mile turf route on September 6 at the Spa. The 3-year-old Kitten’s Joy chestnut crossed the wire first in a maiden claiming event on the same surface and distance on July 16 at Saratoga but was disqualified and placed fifth for interference.
Abreu said he is likely to take a conservative approach for Price Talk’s next start although the Grade 1, $250,000 Belmont Derby Invitational on October 3, a 10-furlong turf test for sophomores offering a berth in the Breeders’ Cup Turf, is a possibility.
“There’s an allowance race for him on the second going a mile and a sixteenth for straight 3-year-olds,” said Abreu. “I’ll breeze him on Saturday and take it from there. He’s been good so far, but if he breezes like he was breezing in Saratoga I would probably take into consideration putting him in a stakes race instead of the allowance.
“I don’t think distance will be a problem for him,” added Abreu. “I think the longer he goes, the better he’s going to be.”
Photo: Liveyourbeastlife’s trainer Jorge Abreu. Courtesy West Point Thoroughbreds