Updated on 09/15/2011 12:49PM

Fast and furious Travers works


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Jockeys Jorge Chavez and John Velazquez got to take their Travers mounts out for a test drive Monday morning as preparations for the Mid-Summer Derby, which will be run on Aug. 25, heated up at Saratoga.

Four horses pointing to the Travers put in workouts Monday morning including Dollar Bill, A P Valentine, Jim Dandy winner Scorpion, and allowance winner Volponi. E Dubai, the Dwyer winner, worked on Sunday. Point Given, the Preakness, Belmont Stakes and Haskell winner, was scheduled to work Tuesday at Del Mar and remains 50-50 to run.

Others expected for the Travers are Harrisand, This Fleet Is Due, and Win City. Free of Love is possible and Balto Star is a remote possibility.

Monday, at 6:30 a.m., Chavez climbed aboard Dollar Bill for the first time and put him through a six-furlong workout in 1:14.28 over the main track. Dollar Bill, working with blinkers for the second straight week, breezed in company with Lady Pulpit. The two broke off together and Dollar Bill, with minimal encouragement, finished seven lengths in front. "It looks like he'll run all day, that's what impressed me," Chavez said. "He did it pretty easily. He was going good, so I didn't ask him much."

Dollar Bill has not been out since finishing fourth in the Belmont Stakes. He has had five workouts since July 15, the last two coming in three-quarter-cup blinkers. "We'll see if it helps him get into the race a little better," Stewart said. "I'm not looking for him to be on the lead."

As Dollar Bill was walking off the backstretch gap, A P Valentine entered the track through the paddock. After backing up to the wire, A P Valentine galloped with his head down before getting a bit rank turning down the backside. At that point, Velazquez dropped his hands and let A P Valentine break away from the pole a bit slow, getting his first quarter in 25.32 seconds. He gradually picked it up, and with a few crosses from Velazquez in the stretch, A P Valentine finished the move in 1:02.13, a final quarter of 24.83 seconds. The main track did not yield fast times all morning.

"He's all by himself, he's kind of looking around not really paying attention, so I threw a couple of crosses at him to make sure he's working," Velazquez said. "I knew he went pretty slow the first quarter so I let him gallop out another eighth of a mile. He went well."

Trainer Nick Zito was pleased with the move, and though he doesn't routinely use jockeys in the morning, he wanted Velazquez to get acquainted with A P Valentine.

After the renovation break, Volponi breezed six furlongs in 1:14.13 under Richard Migliore. It was a bit slower than trainer Phil Johnson was looking for, but he liked the way the colt finished.

On the training track, Scorpion breezed five furlongs in 1:02.06 under exercise rider Louise Attfield. On Sunday, E Dubai drilled seven furlongs in 1:26.66 over the main track.

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