10/20/2008 12:00AM

Turf: Grand Couturier won't have recent work


Of the six American contenders for the $2 million Breeders' Cup Turf on Saturday at Santa Anita, only one will enter the race without a workout in the last week.

Grand Couturier, arguably the best hope among the Americans, will start in the BC Turf 10 days after his most recent workout. For trainer Robert Ribaudo, it is a sensible approach, considering the style in which the 5-year-old horse trains. Plus, Ribaudo saw enough in Grand Couturier's emphatic victory by 10o1/4 lengths in the Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic at Belmont Park on Sept. 27 to schedule only one pre-Breeders' Cup work, a half-mile breeze on turf at Belmont Park on Oct. 15.

"He's pretty aggressive in his training and he's coming off a real big effort," he said. "We were more concerned about the race taking too much.

"He gets a lot out of everything he does. Even when you take him out for a walk, he's all muscle. It's not in a nervous way, it's a good-feeling way. Even jogging, he gets so much out of it."

Grand Couturier is one of 11 probables for the BC Turf, which is run over 1 1/2 miles. Owned by Marc Keller, Grand Couturier will be after his third consecutive Grade 1 win, having also won the Sword Dancer Stakes at Saratoga on Aug. 16.

Four of the American-based hopefuls worked on Sunday and Monday - Better Talk Now, Dancing Forever, Out of Control, and Red Rocks. Spring House was scheduled to work at Santa Anita on Tuesday.

Better Talk Now, the winner of the 2004 BC Turf at Lone Star Park, breezed six furlongs in 1:14.60 at Fair Hill training center in Maryland, in company with stablemate Jade's Revenge, who was given the same time.

"It was very straightforward," trainer Graham Motion said. "I told [the rider] to let them go out and enjoy themselves. I didn't want to them to overdo it."

The BC Turf field will not include Red Giant, the winner of the Grade 1 Clement Hirsch Turf Championship at Santa Anita in late September. He was suffering from a temperature and will be retired to stud, trainer Todd Pletcher said.