California Chrome has first workout at Los Alamitos

cal chrome win small2014 Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome turned in his first workout since the Belmont Stakes, breezing three furlongs handily the morning of Aug. 8 at Los Alamitos Racecourse.

Trainer Art Sherman and co-owner Steve Coburn both watched the 3 furlong workout at Los Alamitos Race Track which was timed in :37 ⅗ seconds. California Chrome had a new exercise companion as Anna Wells, celebrating her 22nd birthday, filled in for regular rider Willie Delgado.

“We’ve had almost two weeks of jogging and galloping,” Sherman said, since California Chrome returned mid-July from his five-week vacation at Harris Farms, the colt’s birthplace, in Central California. His vacation followed his Triple Crown campaign.

“I don’t think as far as air goes … he has a hell of a foundation on him, you know what I mean,” Sherman said. “The horse hasn’t gone back on us, and I think it won’t take long for him to get back to himself after watching him today. He’s kind of push button. He’s one of those horses that you love to be able to train because he does everything you ask him to do.”

Sherman continues to say that he has not selected a prep race yet for California Chrome, who seems to be heading for the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic at Santa Anita Park on November 1. The trainer said there are three possible races in mind.

“We’ll just play it by ear and see how he advances in his training and that will give me a good idea where we’re at,” Sherman said.

California Chrome’s last start June 7 in the Belmont Stakes resulted in a fourth-place finish. That ended a six-race winning streak for the California-bred son of Lucky Pulpit, including victories this spring in the San Felipe Stakes, Santa Anita Derby, the Kentucky Derby, and Preakness Stakes.

Coburn made the trip from his home near Reno, Nev., to catch the workout and was all smiles afterward.

“He’s happy, he loves what he does,” said Coburn. “You can see by looking at him. He just loves his barn and everybody around him. It’s good to have him back home. This is his environment. It was good. He did very, very well. He does everything on his own. He just loves the job, he loves the game. It’s great to see him back on the track, it really is.”

Anna Wells called her horse racing experience of riding California Chrome “a feeling I’ve never felt before. I let Chrome do all the work. Willie told me he’d start a little slower, pick it up, and pull himself up after the wire, and that’s exactly what he did.”