02/24/2012 12:33PM

Gulfstream Park: Shackleford tests respiratory monitor during drill


HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Two leaders of the older handicap division, Shackleford and Mucho Macho Man, took advantage of a gorgeous morning in south Florida to work over a fast racetrack Friday at Gulfstream Park.

Shackleford, breezing for the first time since his disappointing seventh-place finish as the tepid favorite in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap two weeks earlier, went an easy half-mile in 49.20 seconds. Shackleford, a finalist for 3-year-old divisional honors in 2011, completed his final quarter in 24.86 while going easily to the wire before galloping out a strong five-eighths in 1:01.67 and pulling up six furlongs in 1:15.76.

Shackleford was hooked up to an overground endoscopy machine during his work, an apparatus that allows a veterinarian to assess a horse’s breathing function while being exercised. Trainer Dale Romans said the equipment is relatively new and he agreed to allow his vet to test the machine on Shackleford during his routine workout Friday.

“The designer of the machine wanted to tinker with it a little this morning, and my vet wanted to get used to the machine, so I allowed them to test it on Shackleford,” Romans said. “We figured if you’re going to use it, why not use it on the best horse in the barn. I was extremely pleased with the way he worked, it looks like he’s come out of the Donn just fine. And by the way, his airways looked beautiful, according to the vet.”

Romans said he has nothing specific picked out for Shackleford’s next start, but said he was toying with the idea of turning him back to seven furlongs for the Grade 1 Carter.

Mucho Macho Man, an impressive winner of the Sunshine Millions Classic in his 2012 debut, worked six furlongs in 1:13.57, with internal splits of 24.82 for the quarter and 48.32 for the half. He galloped out seven-eighths in 1:29.10. Mucho Macho Man is being pointed to the Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Handicap going a mile on March 10.

Another big name on Friday’s tab at Gulfstream was Grade 1 winner Jersey Town who breezed an easy half-mile in 49.36 for trainer Barclay Tagg.