Oct 19 2019

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ARCADIA, CA – Trainer Jorge Navarro’s Shancelot worked for the first time since his narrow defeat in the Santa Anita Sprint Championship Stakes (G1), running well enough over the Santa Anita Park main track that Navarro had one word to describe his Saturday morning effort: “Phenomenal.”

Under multiple Breeders’ Cup-winning jockey Martin Garcia, Shancelot worked 4 furlongs in a published time of :46.80. Not only is that time exceedingly quick over what many are calling a deep, slow, tiring main track, but only one horse in the past two weeks has worked faster – Bob Baffert’s Improbable, who went 4 furlongs in :46.40 on October 7.

“When Martin came back, he was shaking,” Navarro said. “I said, ‘You’ve ridden for Baffert all the time, you’re used to good horses.’ He knew the horse was fast, he just didn’t know how fast.”

Navarro’s only request before Garcia hopped aboard was to aim for a 48-second work, but when he returned, Garcia knew he’d gone much faster than asked and apologized. Navarro, though, was pleased with the effort, both from the horse and from his rider.

“I kinda knew he wouldn’t do 48 (seconds),” Navarro said. “I just wanted to see him relax. Martin had his hands (still) the whole time; he didn’t try to restrain him. He just let him go.”

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Photo Ernie Belmonte.

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