06/09/2013 12:54PM

Belmont Park: Verrazano among Pletcher runners breezing ahead of stakes

Barbara D. Livingston
Verrazano, shown training last month, breezed Sunday at Belmont Park in preparation for next Sunday's Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park.

ELMONT, N.Y. – There are not many trainers who can win the Belmont Stakes early Saturday evening and then work 18 horses the following morning, including a trio of Grade 1 winners.

But there aren’t many trainers blessed with the stock of Todd Pletcher, who, the morning after winning the Belmont with Palace Malice, watched as Verrazano, Dreaming of Julia, and Princess of Sylmar topped a loaded work tab at Belmont Park for upcoming stakes.

“We’re blessed with a talented roster right now,” Pletcher said Sunday. “Like I said at the beginning of the year and last summer, when we had a pretty strong Saratoga with 2-year-olds, you just hope they can stay healthy and develop from 2 to 3, and we’ve been fortunate that a lot of them have.”

Pletcher’s big guns worked over the Belmont training track following the 9:30 renovation break on a beautiful, warm Sunday morning.

Dreaming of Julia, pointing for the Grade 1 Mother Goose Stakes here June 22, led off with a solid half-mile move in 48.06 seconds under exercise rider Hector Ramos. Working by herself, Dreaming of Julia went her first eighth in 12.94 seconds, the quarter in 24.44, and came home in 23.62. She galloped out five furlongs in 1:01.78 and pulled up six furlongs in 1:15.85.

“She’s like clockwork out there, 48 just effortlessly, and seems like she’s in good form,” Pletcher said.

Dreaming of Julia, who won the Gulfstream Oaks by 21 3/4 lengths, finished a troubled fourth in the Kentucky Oaks.

Next to work was the team of Wood Memorial winner Verrazano – who is pointing to next Sunday’s $150,000 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth – and the 4-year-old maiden Welter Weight, who cost $1 million as a yearling. Verrazano, who was a bit hot around the neck, broke off about a half-length behind Welter Weight but quickly caught up, and the two ran basically together through an eighth in 12.38 seconds and a quarter in 23.77 before getting the final quarter in 23.57.

Verrazano, under John Velazquez, galloped out five furlongs in 1:00.48 and six furlongs in 1:15.03. It was Verrazano’s third work since his 14th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, his first loss in five career starts.

“I thought he was very good again,” Pletcher said. “He’s had three solid works since the Derby, and we’re on target for the Pegasus now, and hopefully that leads us to the Haskell.”

Princess of Sylmar had her second work since upsetting the Kentucky Oaks, working four furlongs in 49.43. She worked in company with the multiple graded stakes winner Kauai Katie.

Princess of Sylmar is targeting the Grade 1 Coaching Club American Oaks at Saratoga on July 20. Kauai Katie, most recently third in the Grade 1 Acorn, is a candidate for either the Grade 3 Victory Ride at Belmont on June 29 or the Grade 1 Prioress at Saratoga on July 27.