Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Warrior's Reward, who will join the Spendthrift stallion roster in 2011, drew the far outside post in a 12-horse field in the $2 million Breeders' Cup Sprint, which runs Sat., Nov. 6 at 3:15 pm ET. The draw shouldn't pose a problem for the late-running Ian Wilkes trainee.
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Four-year-old Warrior's Reward style is to come from well off the pace, which has served him very well in his career. The bay colt came from last to account for the Grade 1 Carter H. this past April 30. He has never been worse than second in four starts at Churchill Downs, including runner-up finishes in the Churchill Downs S. (G2) and Northern Dancer (G3). His overall record stands at 4-5-2, with earnings of $505,716 for owner A. Stevens Miles, Jr.
Warrior's Reward was bred in Kentucky by Jayeff B Stables. Miles bought his colt for $180,000 at the 2007 Keeneland September yearling sale.
Getting in a final workout on Nov. 1 before the Sprint, Warrior's Reward went a half in :49 flat and galloped out five-eighths in 1:02 on the Churchill main track. Exercise rider Tracey Wilkes, wife of the trainer, was in the irons.
"He was awesome--he just didn't follow instructions," Wilkes told TDN afterward, "Ian said to go easy to the pole, and he pulled me on up there."
Added the conditioner, "He's full of energy, pulling up wanting to do more, and that's what I want to see. He looked good; everything was perfect this morning. The main thing was just getting in a maintenance work and getting some air in his lungs, letting him run down the lane a little and finish feeling good. We're just tweaking him a little bit, and I expect to see him bounce out of this work ready for the race."