09/14/2011 4:05PM

Belmont Park: Gio Ponti works for Shadwell Turf Mile

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Barbara D. Livingston
Gio Ponti is training up to the Grade 1 Shadwell Turf Mile on Oct. 8 at Keeneland.

Gio Ponti worked five furlongs in 1:03.57 on Wednesday morning over Belmont Park’s inner turf course. Gio Ponti worked in company with the 3-year-old colt Cannon Hill. Gio Ponti began the move a length behind his workmate and finished a head in front. He got his last quarter in 23.57 seconds under exercise rider Jerry Fogarty.

“It was a very easy work for Gio Ponti, exactly what we wanted,” said Christophe Lorieul, the assistant to trainer Christophe Clement who rode Cannon Hill in the breeze. “We wanted to take him out at the three-sixteenths pole, finish a head in front, and gallop out good. He was moving very well I thought, within himself, on the bridle.”

Gio Ponti is pointing to the Shadwell Turf Mile at Keeneland on Oct. 8.

Lovely Lil targets Gallant Bloom

The New York-bred stakes winner Lovely Lil will make her next start in the Grade 2, $150,000 Gallant Bloom Handicap on Sept. 24, trainer Mike Hushion said.

Lovely Lil is coming off a 1 3/4-length victory in the Union Avenue Stakes at Saratoga on Aug. 22. She finished seventh in last year’s Gallant Bloom.

“She’s got to take a step up, but she’s kind of fresh, whereas some of the others aren’t,” Hushion said. “If she’s going to run the race of her life, I’d like it to be in a race like this.”

On Wednesday, Lovely Lil worked four furlongs in 49.68 over the main track.

◗ Margano, a 2-year-old full brother to 2006 Kentucky Derby winner Barbaro, is entered to make his debut in Saturday’s 10th race, a 1 1/16-mile turf race that goes as the last. Margano, like Barbaro, is owned by Lael Stable. Unlike Barbaro, who was trained by Michael Matz, Margano is trained by Barclay Tagg.