01/28/2013 3:46PM

Gulfstream Park: Little Mike has easy work

Barbara D. Livingston
Little Mike, with Faustino Aguilar riding, gets in some work over the Gulfstream turf Sunday.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. - Breeders’ Cup Turf winner Little Mike had his first grass work of the winter on Sunday, going a very easy five furlongs in 1:01.31 over the firm Gulfstream Park turf course.

“I wanted to let him run a little bit for the first time since he’s come back, so I put him on the grass, and I was real pleased with him,” said trainer Dale Romans. “He’s started looking like his old self, and it’s time to try squeezing the lemon a little bit with him, although all his works will not be on the turf.”

Little Mike is scheduled to make his 2013 debut in Dubai on March 9 as a prep for a race on World Cup day three weeks later. Jockey Ramon Dominguez, who guided Little Mike to victory in the Breeders’ Cup, is sidelined by injury, and Romans said John Velazquez has taken the call for his next start.

“The early race over there, I think Johnny is going to ride him. Then it depends where we go for the next one,” said Romans. “If we go in the World Cup, John’s committed to ride him. If we go on the turf, he’s committed elsewhere and we’d have to figure out what we’re going to do there.”

Romans also said Dullahan is training here on a daily basis and is about ready to have his first breeze of the winter.

“We’re a little behind the eight ball with him at the moment, but we’ll get him there,” said Romans.

Dullahan is also scheduled to have a race in Dubai on March 9 as a prep for the $10 million World Cup on March 30.