Connect trainer Chad Brown reported that the $500,000 Cigar Mile (gr. I) winner is in good shape following this past weekend’s race. The win was the second graded stakes victory of the year for Connect, who will now make his way to Brown’s Palm Meadows Training Center winter base.
The plan is for Brown and the rest of Connect’s connections to map out a plan of action for his four-year-old campaign, which might include a bid in the $12 million Pegasus World Cup (gr. I) at Gulfstream Park on January 28.
“I’m going to let him hang out here for a little bit and recover from that race, then take him down to Palm Meadows,” said Brown. “Obviously, we’re going to take a look at this Pegasus Cup but there’s no firm plans to participate at this point. I’ll get him to Florida, see how he’s training, and speak to Paul Pompa about it as the month of December goes on.”
Brown also shared the good news of how the rest of his Cigar Mile Day contingent came back in relatively good order from their respective Aqueduct stakes assignments. “So far, knock on wood, everyone has looked good this morning.”
One of the other contingent was You’re to Blame, who finished fifth in the Remsen (gr. II). It was his stakes debut and the plan is to race him in his three-year-old campaign.
“No real excuse (in the Remsen),” said Brown. “It was the first time he had some kickback and he kind of ran even. It looked like he was retreating at the three-eighths pole, then there he was at the wire and he got up for fifth. He just kind of ran in spots. He’s still a bit of a work in progress, but I do think that this horse has some talent. I’ll let him catch his breath some after this race; he’s done racing this year. Early next year, we’ll get him going again and, hopefully with some experience, he’ll improve.
“I’m thinking (he’ll stay in) New York but nothing is firm at this point. I’ll speak to the ownership group, but he strikes me as a horse that could benefit from staying here over the winter.”