VETERAN BRASS HAT SHARP IN FINAL DRILL FOR LOUISVILLE – Fred
Bradley’s homebred Brass Hat has never been known for dazzling speed in his
morning workouts, but a sharp work on Saturday by the 8-year-old veteran could
indicate the old boy is sitting on a big effort in next week’s $100,000-added
Louisville Handicap (GIII).
Brass Hat tuned up for that 1 ½-mile turf test with a five-furlong breeze over a sloppy t rack in 1:01. The work was a ‘bullet’ move under jockey Charles Woods Jr. as it ended up as the fastest of 20 at the distance.
“He worked really well,” trainer William “Buff” Bradley said. “Charlie said he worked ‘awesome,’ and then said, ‘How’d he get beat?’ But that’s just Charlie. He said he just sat on him the whole way, and that he just picked it up, put his head down and then galloped out good.”
Brass Hat won the Grade I Donn Handicap at Gulfstream Park in 2006 and finished second in the $5 million Dubai World Cup (GI) on dirt before being disqualified for a medication infraction. Despite the loss of that $1 million runner-up purse in Dubai, Brass Hat has won eight of 29 races and earned $1,825,814.
He has yet to win in seven tries on the turf, but is coming off a good third-place finish to Spice Route in the Elkhorn (GIII) at Keeneland. And he had very little luck in last year’s running of the Louisville in which he dropped far off a slow pace under jockey Calvin Borel, but rallied wide to finish fifth and was beaten only 2 ½ lengths by the victorious Lattice. Borel will return to the saddle aboard Brass Hat next week.
“Calvin took the blame last year – he had him too far back off that slow pace,” Bradley said. “I’ve got to tell Calvin not to ride him like Mine That Bird – ride him like Rachel.”
Brass Hat will bid to snap a 10-race losing streak in the Louisville. He last visited the winner’s circle in the $500,000 Massachusetts Handicap at Suffolk Downs in September 2007.