07/24/2011 3:21PM

Monmouth Park: Haskell stablemates Pants On Fire, Ruler On Ice work between races

Ryan Denver/EQUI-PHOTO
Belmont Stakes winner Ruler On Ice (left) with jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. in the saddle and Louisiana Derby winner Pants On Fire, with jockey Elvis Trujillo , work a half-mile Sunday in their final prep for next Sunday's Haskell.

Ruler On Ice and Pants On Fire went in lockstep in a half-mile workout between races Sunday at Monmouth Park, after which trainer Kelly Breen pronounced both 3-year-olds ready to go next Sunday in the $1 million Haskell Invitational.

Head-and-head throughout, the pair went in 47.60 seconds over a fast track in completing their main preparations for the Grade 1 Haskell. The colts were separated by a nose on the wire, with Pants On Fire and jockey Elvis Trujillo on the inside and Ruler On Ice and jockey Jose Valdivia Jr. on the outside.

“Absolutely perfect,” said Breen, who trains Ruler On Ice and Pants On Fire for owners George and Lori Hall. “I wanted them to go in just under 48. They’re both coming off wins and I just want to keep them sharp. They looked good coming back, both had lots of energy. They’ll gallop up to the race now.

Ruler On Ice won the June 11 Belmont Stakes in his last start, while Pants On Fire captured the June 18 Pegasus at Monmouth in his latest.

Earlier Sunday, Shackleford breezed a swift five furlongs in a solo workout at Churchill Downs when going in 58.60 seconds. Shackleford, the 2011 Preakness winner, is scheduled to arrive at Monmouth by van early Tuesday.

Other prospective starters for the 1 1/8-mile Haskell include Astrology, Coil, Concealed Identity, and JJ’s Lucky Train.


Entries for the Haskell will be drawn Thursday. The race will be telecast on ABC on a one-hour broadcast from 5-6 p.m. Eastern.