Third Day won his second straight start on February 8 in a $60,000 overnight stakes race at Gulfstream Park. He started off the race trailing in the back of the pack, but would eventually rally from his fourth place finish (out of a field of five horses) to take the lead from Barry Karafin Bets in the stretch. The Todd Pletcher-trained Third Day won by a neck in a time of 1:36.96.
While it was Third Day’s second straight win, his last race was his debut maiden race at Monmouth Park on July 31. He won that race by 2 1/4 lengths in a time of 1:04.19. He put in four works in January at Palm Beach Downs in order to prepare for his second race.
“The horse had been training very well. He showed a lot of promise in his debut and he needed a little time after that,” said Pletcher. “We were optimistic being a son of Bernardini and out of a Street Cry mare that the distance would be OK for him.
“We were just hoping we had him tight enough to go a mile off the layoff and I thought he handled that part of it well. He’s still learning and still a little green, but considering the layoff and the stretch out in distance, I thought it was very encouraging.”
The plan now is to train Third Day for a couple of Triple Crown prep races — the $400,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. II) on March 4 and the $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) on April 1.