09/14/2009 11:00PM

Summer Bird has easy breeze at Belmont


ELMONT, N.Y. - Summer Bird, whose first post-Travers workout was delayed by rainy weather last weekend, breezed an easy half-mile in 50.64 seconds over a fast main track at Belmont Park on Tuesday under regular rider Kent Desormeaux.

The move was ranked 57th fastest of 67 at the distance, but trainer Tim Ice wasn't looking to break any land speed records with Summer Bird, the Belmont and Travers winner who is scheduled to make his next start in the $750,000 Jockey Club Gold Cup here Oct. 3 against older horses.

"I got him in 50.15, but it doesn't matter," said Ice. "I wasn't judging by time, I just wanted him to go an easy half. I wanted to see how he finished, and he looked good finishing. It was nothing stressful for him. We'll come back Saturday or Sunday going five-eighths, and get him back on his regular work schedule."

Gio Ponti, who is targeting the $600,000 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic on Gold Cup Day, also worked an easy half-mile, going 51.06 seconds on a "good" inner turf course for trainer Christophe Clement.