Saratoga: It's Tricky goes quickly in drill for Personal Ensign
It’s Tricky will go into next Sunday’s $600,000 Personal Ensign Invitational having gone three months between starts. Based on the way she worked Saturday morning over the synthetic surface at the Godolphin training center, fitness won’t be an issue when she squares off against Royal Delta in the Grade 1 race at 1 1/8 miles.
It’s Tricky zipped four furlongs in 46.77 seconds, getting her last quarter in 23.87 and galloping out five furlongs in 59.80 under exercise rider Renzo Morales. It was her sixth work since she won the Grade 1 Ogden Phipps on May 28 at Belmont Park and her third consecutive fast work over the synthetic surface.
“She’s been a long time in between so we needed to continue to work her and she’s a little bit like that. She always works pretty fast,” McLaughlin said. “If you don’t ask her a little bit she might stop and turn around.
“That was nice, we’re there now,” he added.
It’s Tricky is 3 for 3 this year with victories in the Top Flight and Distaff Handicap – both Grade 2 races at Aqueduct – before her Grade 1 score in the Phipps on May 28.
The field for the Personal Ensign should come into better focus on Monday after weights are released and a new list of invitees is published. Among those expected for the race are Brushed by a Star, Tiz Miz Sue and Neffertini.
Trainer Todd Pletcher said he planned to breeze a trio of his nominees – Love and Pride, Maristar, and R Gypsy Gold – before determining how many, if any, would run.
Currency Swap sharp in King’s Bishop work
At Monmouth Park, Currency Swap put the finishing touches on his preparation for next weekend’s Grade 1 King’s Bishop Stakes by working a sharp half-mile in 47 seconds.
Trainer Terri Pompay moved the work up to early in the morning to avoid having to breeze over a muddy racetrack as rain showers moved in during mid-morning training hours.
“[The track] had a little moisture in it, but it needed a little moisture,” Pompay said by phone from New Jersey. “It worked out really well and he did it very well, in hand, happy, smooth; cooled out very good. I’m looking forward to the weekend.”
Currency Swap is 3 for 3 at Saratoga, including a victory in the then-Grade 1 Hopeful at seven furlongs last September. Most recently, Currency Swap won the Grade 2 Amsterdam here at 6 1/2 furlongs on July 29.
“I feel like he’s gotten better every time we’ve run him this year,” Pompay said. “I’m hoping this will be even better than his Amsterdam race. He doesn’t give me any reason to doubt that will be true.”
Pompay, who has won three races from eight starters at this meet, said Currency Swap was scheduled to van to Saratoga on Sunday.
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