Nyquist, Mor Spirit work toward sophomore debuts

TwinSpires Staff

January 18th, 2016

One day after being honored as the champion two-year-old male of 2015, Nyquist continued preparations for his sophomore campaign when working five furlongs over Santa Anita Park’s fast main track.

Nyquist was named an Eclipse Award winner during the ceremony at Gulfstream Park Saturday evening, and on Sunday posted a time of 1:00.80 for his five-furlong move.

The unbeaten son of Uncle Mo trained by Doug O’Neill for Paul and Zillah Reddam is readying for his three-year-old debut in the $200,000 San Vicente S. (G2) at seven furlongs on February 15.

“The work was as good as Doug likes to have it,” assistant trainer Leandro Mora said. “He went out (six furlongs) in (1:)14 and galloped out (seven furlongs) in 1:28. It was very good.”

Nyquist earned his Eclipse Award after sweeping all four of his lifetime starts as a juvenile. The bay broke his maiden at Santa Anita in early June and proceeded to take the Best Pal S. (G2), Del Mar Futurity (G1), FrontRunner S. (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1).

Also working at Santa Anita Park on Sunday for his three-year-old debut was Los Alamitos Futurity (G1) victor Mor Spirit.

Under regular rider Gary Stevens, the dark bay son of Eskendereya covered five-eighths in 1:01 as he prepares for the $150,000 Robert B. Lewis S. (G3) at 1 1/16 miles on February 6.

“It was a good work,” assistant trainer Jim Barnes noted. “Gary loved it.”

Mor Spirit is trained by Bob Baffert, who picked up an Eclipse Award as outstanding trainer Saturday night, and campaigned by owner Michael Lund Petersen. The ridgling debuted at Santa Anita, breaking his maiden in his second outing by 4 1/4 lengths, then shipped to Kentucky to try stakes rivals in the Kentucky Jockey Club S. (G2) on November 28.

Mor Spirit finished second in that Churchill Downs contest before heading back to California and a winner’s circle date in the Los Alamitos Futurity last out on December 19.

Nyquist photo courtesy of Breeders’ Cup Ltd.