Updated on 09/15/2011 1:15PM

Good horses, fast workouts

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Joseph Diorio/Horsephotos
Gary Stevens works Gander Tuesday. He must decide between Gander and Macho Uno for the Classic.

ELMONT, N.Y. - Gary Stevens is looking to finalize his plans for the Breeders' Cup Classic this week. On Tuesday, his decision may have gotten more difficult.

Stevens was aboard Gander, the Meadowlands Cup winner, Tuesday morning for a five-furlong workout that was timed in 58.90 seconds over Belmont's main track, equaling the fastest of 37 moves at the distance. Although Stevens wasn't available for comment afterward, trainer John Terranova said Stevens "was pretty impressed with him. He said he did everything right and gave him a great feeling."

Stevens was due to work Macho Uno on Wednesday. Stevens was aboard Macho Uno for his dynamic victory in the Pennsylvania Derby and also his disappointing third-place finish in the Ohio Derby.

When asked about the Classic, Tony Matos, Stevens's agent, would only say "Let's see what happens."

Gander was one of 13 horses pointing to the World Thoroughbred Championships on Oct. 27 to record a timed workout Tuesday morning over Belmont's main track.

Pre-entries for the eight Breeders' Cup races were taken on Monday and were scheduled to be announced Wednesday afternoon.

Following a muddy Monday morning, which limited workouts, Tuesday was a glorious autumn day at Belmont with a cloudless sky and a dry main track.

The bulk of the activity took place immediately following the 8:30 renovation break when 10 horses worked within a 10-minute span. Gander was the first to work and may have taken advantage of a freshly harrowed track to record his scintillating move. Clockers caught him galloping out six furlongs in 1:11.20.

Terranova was extremely pleased with what he saw from Gander, who worked with short-cupped blinkers, commonly referred to as cheaters. He wore them in the Meadowlands Cup, which he won by a head over Broken Vow and Include.

"He's just been training very well and doing well going into the Meadowlands Cup and since he came out of it," Terranova said. "I expected him to work well. This was pretty much his major breeze before the Breeders' Cup. Next week, we'll do something nice and steady. Today, he looked pretty steady, [Stevens] wasn't asking him, he was just kind of cruising along with him."

Terranova did not seem overly concerned over the rider situation. John Velazquez, who rode Gander in the Meadowlands Cup, has taken the call on Include. Still, there are a number of big-name riders who have yet to commit in the Classic, including Edgar Prado, Mike Smith, Alex Solis, and Victor Espinoza.

Jorge Chavez is not open in the Classic because he will be reunited with Albert the Great, a horse he had ridden 11 straight times before being replaced by Stevens for the Gold Cup.

Tuesday, Chavez climbed aboard Albert the Great for a workout that clockers timed in 50.24 seconds for a half-mile. Trainer Nick Zito said Albert the Great worked five furlongs from the half-mile pole, and he caught the horse in 1:01.

Zito said he remains "dumbfounded" over Albert the Great's fourth-place finish in the Jockey Club Gold Cup. While some have speculated that Albert the Great may be feeling the effects of a long campaign, Chavez said he did not get that feeling Tuesday.

"He could've breezed faster," Chavez said. "Nick told me he wanted something nice and easy. I think he still has something left. I don't think he's over the top."

Juveniles burn up the track

Siphonic, the Lane's End Breeders' Futurity winner, and French Assault, the Kentucky Cup Juvenile runner-up, both displayed fondness for Belmont's main track with stellar workouts Tuesday morning.

Siphonic, under exercise rider Michelle Jensen, breezed five furlongs in 59.65 seconds, the third- fastest of the morning. Trainer David Hofmans, who arrived Tuesday morning to New York on the red-eye flight from California, liked the way Siphonic got over the ground.

"Michelle said he did it easy, galloped out wanting to do more, and pulled up fine," Hofmans said.

Hofmans was expecting Jerry Bailey to work the colt, but Bailey was not in town. Bailey is expected to ride Siphonic in the Juvenile provided Chris McCarron sticks with Came Home, the Hopeful winner.

French Assault put away workmate Cyane's Thunder early, and cruised through a six-furlong move in 1:12.24 under Edgar Prado. It was the fastest by more than two seconds of seven six-furlong drills. It was also French Assault's second bullet move over the track.

"Everything's coming together perfectly," said Pappy Manuel, assistant to trainer Keith Desormeaux. "Just in the last week, he's changed a lot. He's starting to get that glow to him."

Also working for the Juvenile was Saarland, who went four furlongs in 49.07 seconds for trainer Shug McGaughey.

A 'Starrer' in the making

About an hour before Siphonic breezed, Hofmans watched Starrer breeze five furlongs in 1:00.24 as she prepares for the Breeders' Cup Distaff. Starrer is coming off a second-place finish in the Overbrook Spinster at Keeneland where she may have been compromised by that track's speed favoring tendency.

"She looks better than she did at Keeneland," Hofmans said.

Exogenous, the Beldame winner, breezed four furlongs in 49.78 seconds. She did not work with blinkers, equipment that she has worn in each of her last two victories.

Also working for the Distaff were Atelier, five furlongs in 1:01.24, and Two Item Limit, six furlongs in 1:14.97.

A bullet for Peeping Tom

Peeping Tom, a notoriously slow work horse, prepped for the Sprint by drilling four furlongs in 46.24 seconds, finishing a half-length ahead of stablemate Bluesbreaker. It was the fastest of 38 moves at the distance.

"I was surprised they went that fast, they didn't look like they went that fast," trainer Pat Reynolds said. "I'm really, really happy with the work. You've got to be happy with a horse that doesn't really go that fast."

Reynolds said he put Peeping Tom on the inside of Bluesbreaker "to try to wake him up a little bit. He likes to loop horses around the outside. I figured we'd force the issue a little bit, make him run the whole half-mile."

Also working for the Sprint was Five Star Day, who went five furlongs in 1:00.05 under exercise rider Andy Durnin. Hap, prepping for the Breeders' Cup Turf, worked a half-mile in 50.24 seconds on the dirt.