Showing no signs of being slowed from the after effects of surgery to remove a kidney stone earlier in the meet, Dallas Stewart bounces from his barn on the Oklahoma Training Track to watch training on the main track.
Sometimes he walks, other times he takes a golf cart. He'll go to the Oklahoma, too, and Wednesday morning he was getting entries set for the weekend.
Tale Of Verve and Unbridled Forever are on tap for Grade 1 engagements Saturday, the former in the $1.6 million Travers and the latter in the $500,000 Ballerina. Unbridled Forever won the Shine Again Aug. 5, a few days after the surgery. Stewart, like any other horseman, wants a few more wins before he heads back to Churchill Downs to gear up for the September meet there, Kentucky Downs' turf festival and Keeneland fall.
In between sets Wednesday Stewart went rapid fire, stall-by-stall with The Special's Tom Law. When he reached the end of the shed Stewart threw in a few updates on a couple other stable stars back at Churchill Downs.
Tale Of Verve: "He's obviously entered in the Travers, we're pretty excited about that. Hey, let's do it, see what happens. You can't win it if you're not in it. The horse is doing good, had a couple of great works, Gary Stevens is back on board for us. Hey, it's the Travers. Anything can happen. We aren't going to be like Violette (and Upstart), we're running."
Aztec Sense: "He's a 2-year-old by Street Sense out of an A.P. Indy mare (stakes-placed Aztec Pearl, from family of Aurora, Althea, Furiously and others). He's for Chuck Fipke, he bred him and we entered him for Saturday. First-timer, couple good works. Big, good-looking horse, good endurance, great pedigree, loves to train."
Tom's Ready: "This is Tom Benson's horse (owner of New Orleans Saints, runs in name of Gayle Benson). He ran once, got beat (1 1/4 lengths, Aug. 15). He came on strong, did well. We'll see about running back, maybe the seven-eighths. I nominated to the Hopeful but I don't think we'll go there."
Unbridled Forever: "She had a great first race here, her first in nine months. We entered her for the Ballerina. She's great, easy to be around."
She's A True Beauty: "She ran third in a maiden special weight, Eric Cancel rode her and she ran great (Aug. 20). Got beat about a length for all the money. She's by Yes It's True and (closely related to multiple Grade 2 winner) Aikenite."
Ide Biduadeau: "Another Louisiana-bred that ran fourth here, she's a nice, well-bred horse. She ran into that Tapit filly that Ralph Nicks trains. She was fourth in that race and very credible (at 53-1). Louisiana-bred by Ide for Murray Valene (Valene Farms). She'll be tough in Louisiana."
Pleasant Tales: "She is out there grazing. Finished fourth in the Mother Goose, ran her in the Test and she didn't have a good trip (ninth, beaten 20 ¾ lengths). She seems OK now. I'm not going to run in the Prioress, maybe give her a bit more time. I think they've got a race at Charles Town, the Charles Town Oaks. I'll probably think about that, it's at 7 furlongs and maybe a little lesser group."
Cajun Spirit: "He's for West Point Thoroughbreds, ran for $40,000 on the turf and didn't run too bad (ninth, Aug. 9). We'll run him back. He's a Louisiana-bred."
Lady's First: "This is a New York-bred 2-year-old filly, she was fifth last time out (Monday). She just got outrun but she ran hard. She's by Ghostzapper for some nice people out of Texas, J. R. and Rita Young."
Forever d'Oro: "He's a 2-year-old Medaglia d'Or colt out of Lemons Forever. He's up to five-eighths, should be rolling at Keeneland. He's real good."
Bayou Banker: "He's another Louisiana-bred 2-year-old by Super Saver that ran a couple weeks ago (10th, Aug. 8 in 6-furlong maiden special). Didn't run very well, I expected a little more. He was kind of unfocused, we'll put some blinkers on, see where he goes."
Ready For Chianti: "She's a More Than Ready filly who ran here (Opening Day, July 24) that didn't run very well. I got her back to Kentucky. She actually bled. We're looking forward to running her on the turf at Kentucky Downs. She's a nice filly."
Forever Unbridled: "The younger sister to Unbridled Forever, she's going again, back up to three-eighths (breezed that distance in :37.80 Aug. 14 at Churchill Downs). We gave her some time off, sent her to WinStar, freshened her up and she put some weight on. She had a great campaign, ran in the Kentucky Oaks (11th). I think at that point she was just tired. She had lost a little bit of weight so we just stopped on her."
Commanding Curve: "He's there at Churchill, too. He didn't run any good in West Virginia, but he had a lung infection. So he's back."
Golden Soul: "Same thing for him, sent him over to WinStar to freshen him up a little bit. Hopefully we'll get all of them (Forever Unbridled, Commanding Curve, Golden Soul and others) ready for the fall and Fair Grounds for the winter. Keep them healthy."