Margoth’s Gunnevera breezed six furlongs in 1:13.20 at Gulfstream Park West Friday morning in preparation for a scheduled start in the Woodward (G1) at Saratoga Sept. 1.
“The horse worked very, very good. I’m very happy with him,” trainer Antonio Sano said.
The multiple graded-stakes winner, who was ridden by jockey Edgard Zayas, is scheduled to depart Gulfstream Park West by van at 7:30 p.m. Friday.
“He will stop at a farm in Georgia to sleep and then continue on to Saratoga,” Sano said.
Friday morning’s breeze was the only one at the distance and was the second since the 4-year-old son of Dialed In captured a 1 1/16-mile optional claiming allowance at Gulfstream Park Aug. 10 by 6 ½ lengths under wraps. Gunnevera hadn’t raced since exiting an eighth-place finish in the $10 million Dubai World Cup (G1) with a hoof injury. The Kentucky-bred 4-year-old was freshened in Ocala for two months to give the hoof time to heal before returning to Sano’s Gulfstream Park West stable.
Last year, Gunnevera made a return from a layoff to capture the 1 1/16-mile Tangelo Stakes at Gulfstream in preparation for a start in the Travers (G1), in which he finished second behind West Coast and ahead of Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Always Dreaming, Preakness (G1) victor Cloud Computing and Belmont Stakes (G1) champion Tapwrit.
Gunnevera won the 2016 Saratoga Special (G2) at Saratoga. He also won the $1 million Delta Downs Jackpot (G3) to cap his juvenile season before going on to win the $400,000 Fountain of Youth (G2) at Gulfstream the following year.
Gunnevera, who capped his 3-year-old season with a fifth-place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) at Del Mar, finished third in the Jan. 27 $16 million Pegasus World Cup Invitational (G1) at Gulfstream before venturing to Dubai.
The late-running Gunnevera has earned $2.9 million in purses during his 17-race career.
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