02/24/2012 5:13PM

Oaklawn: Shotgun Gulch working toward Azeri

Barbara D. Livingston
Shotgun Gulch has not raced since October.

HOT SPRINGS, Ark. - Shotgun Gulch, a Grade 1 winner of more than $500,000, moved closer to an intended start in the Grade 3, $150,000 Azeri at Oaklawn on Friday morning, when she breezed five furlongs in 1:01.

“We’ll put one more serious work in her before we go,” said C.R. Trout, who bred, owns, and trains Shotgun Gulch.

The Azeri, a 1 1/16-mile race for fillies and mares March 17, is expected to draw such runners as Joyful Victory and Absinthe Minded. Shotgun Gulch was fifth in the race a year ago, when Havre de Grace and Blind Luck finished one-two in the race. From there, Shotgun Gulch won the Grade 1 Madison at Keeneland, which is again a goal, said Trout.

The Azeri will be Shotgun Gulch’s first start since October. She was scratched from the Breeders’ Cup Filly and Mare Sprint in November. In her work Friday morning, she drilled under Luis Quinonez.

“She worked really good, we’re right on schedule,” said Trout, who had Shotgun Gulch galloping out six furlongs in 1:13.

Trout said Scat Baby, a 3-year-old half-sister to Shotgun Gulch, is being pointed for an allowance this coming week at Oaklawn. She was a maiden winner at Remington Park.