Edited Press Release
Dual stakes winner Discreetness worked a bullet five furlongs in 1:00.40 Saturday at Oaklawn Park in preparation for the $500,000 Southwest S. (G3) on February 15. The 1 1/16-mile race is the second major local prep for the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) April 16.
Discreetness captured Oaklawn’s first major Arkansas Derby prep – the Smarty Jones S. – in his three-year-old debut on January 18.
He breezed just after the renovation break on a sunny, unseasonably warm morning under regular rider Jon Court, the son-in-law of the colt’s trainer, Jinks Fires. After completing five furlongs in 1:00.40 over the fast-rated surface, Discreetness galloped out six furlongs in 1:13.40.
Fires, who teamed with Court, to win the 2011 Southwest with Archarcharch breezed Discreetness in company leading up to the Smarty Jones, but said that wasn’t necessary Saturday.
“It was just a maintenance work,” Fires said. “He’s fit already. It was maintenance work to keep him where he’s at.”
Depending on weather, Fires said Discreetness will probably have a half-mile “blowout” work about four days before the Southwest.
Prior to the Smarty Jones, Discreetness, who races for Dwight Pruett’s Xpress Thoroughbreds, won the Springboard Mile S. on December 13 at Remington Park in his final start as a juvenile.
A possible rival for Discreetness in the Southwest could be Whitmore. Co-owner/trainer Ron Moquett said he’s still leaning toward running the chestnut in that contest following the gelding’s five-furlong work Saturday morning over the track.
Breezing over a fast dirt approximately 20 minutes after the track opened, Whitmore, in company, covered the distance in 1:02.
Whitmore normally breezes in company and worked with Smed, a four-year-old gelding who broke his maiden for a $10,000 claiming price in his last start on November 12 at Churchill Downs. Wearing blinkers, Whitmore started about a length behind his stablemate on the outside at the five-furlong pole, accelerated past Smed on the outside in midstretch and was approximately seven lengths clear at the finish.
Smed was credited with five furlongs in 1:03.40.
“Just a typical maintenance deal,” Moquett said of Whitmore. “He has a whole lot of character, that horse. He’s quirky, but it’s the fun kind of quirky. He can run.”
Whitmore, racing in blinkers for the first time, won an entry-level allowance/optional claiming sprint in his January 16 sophomore debut at Oaklawn. The son of Pleasantly Perfect would be stretching out from six furlongs to 1 1/16 miles for the Southwest.
“Looking that direction,” Moquett said. “Favoring it.”
Whitmore finished fifth in his only start around two turns, the November 21 Delta Jackpot S. (G3) at Delta Downs.
Discreetness photo courtesy of Oaklawn Park/Coady Photography