07/27/2003 12:00AM

Funny Cide has final Haskell work


SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Funny Cide, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner, completed his preparations for next Sunday's $1 million Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park by working six furlongs in 1:12.46 Sunday morning over a fast Saratoga main track.

Funny Cide, under regular exercise rider Robin Smullen, first went to the pony track where he jogged a turn and galloped two turns before walking over to the main track shortly after 5:30.

Once on the main track, Smullen only backed Funny Cide up to the seven-furlong pole, before turning him around. Funny Cide broke off approaching the six-furlong pole and was clocked by Daily Racing Form in fractions of 12.66 seconds, 24.30, 35.61, 47.62, and 1:00.41. He galloped out seven eighths in 1:25.83 and went out the mile in 1:40.69.

``It's obvious he's matured because you could never ordinarily go in [24.30 seconds] for the first quarter,'' Smullen said. ``We put a snaffle bit back on him with no figure-eight and he's just as relaxed as he could be. I thought it was a great work. He got a tiny bit tired, but if you're not getting tired you're not getting what you want out of your work.''

Trainer Barclay Tagg said he was pleased with the work, but noted that it took Funny Cide a little while to cool out. Tagg is using the Haskell as a prep for the $1 million Travers on Aug. 23.

Funny Cide will gallop at Saratoga for most of the week before shipping to Monmouth the morning of the race.