California Chrome and Dortmund, the 1-2 finishers at the end of a heart rate-accelerating stretch duel in the San Diego Handicap on July 23, put in their final works Sunday for a rematch in next Saturday’s $1 million TVG Pacific Classic.
California Chrome, North American racing’s top all-time money earner and No. 1 ranked active runner, went five furlongs in 1:00.20 under exercise rider Dihigi Gladney at Los Alamitos Race Course in Orange County, the headquarters for the stable of trainer Art Sherman.
Dortmund, winner of the Santa Anita Derby and third behind American Pharoah in the Kentucky Derby last year, worked seven furlongs in 1:24.60 under Rafael Bejarano for trainer Bob Baffert at Del Mar.
After the work, Baffert said that Bejarano would ride Dortmund in the Pacific Classic and the 4-year-old son of Big Brown owned by Kaleem Shah would be the lone representative from the Baffert stable. Baffert had also nominated Hoppertunity and Arrogate to the Classic.
Sherman’s hand-timed splits for California Chrome during the workout were :12.00, :24.00 and :36 “and change.”
“He looked good and finished strong,” Sherman said via telephone. “We’re ready.”
California Chrome will travel to Del Mar on Monday with an expected mid-morning arrival time.
Dortmund worked in company with Drefong, breaking off a length behind, stalking two or three lengths behind for the first two furlongs then drawing even in upper stretch and staying that way past the finish line.
Track clockers had Dortmund in splits of :12.00, :23.80, :36.40, :59.80 and 1:11.60. Drefong was given 1:12.00 for six furlongs.
“(Dortmund) worked very nicely, we’re very happy with it,” Baffert said.
The nominations are final for the TVG Pacific Classic. pic.twitter.com/SiYnaMduxo
— Del Mar Racetrack (@DelMarRacing) August 12, 2016
In other Pacific Classic news:
Trainer Richard Mandella said defending champion Beholder would have a short and easy work Tuesday or Wednesday.
Trainer Richard Baltas said that Imperative was probable to run in the Classic for a third straight year and for a third different rider. Norberto Arroyo Jr., has the mount following Kent Desormeaux in 2014 and Corey Nakatani in 2015.
Del Mar Thoroughbred Club