ELMONT, N.Y. -- The Triple Crown series may be over, but preparations for the second half of the season in the 3-year-old division have already begun.
Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver breezed four furlongs in 49.21 seconds early Saturday morning at Belmont Park as he begins preparations for a likely start in the $1 million Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park on Aug. 1. Jackson Bend, the third-place finisher in the Preakness, worked four furlongs in 47.13 seconds on Saturday for a potential start in the Grade 3, $200,000 Pegasus Stakes next Saturday at Monmouth Park.
For Super Saver, Saturday's work was his first since his eighth-place finish in the Preakness on May 15. Super Saver did not run in the Belmont Stakes, a race won Drosselmeyer. Both of those 3-year-olds are owned by WinStar Farm.
"He worked great, was moving really well," said Jonathan Thomas, the assistant to Super Saver's trainer, Todd Pletcher. "He has got a great energy level and seemed happy and enthusiastic to stretch his legs this morning."
Shortly after the Preakness, Pletcher said that Super Saver lost some weight following the Derby and Preakness. He was given a few extra days off the track before being put into an every-other-day training program of jogging and galloping. Thomas said Super Saver has been galloping regularly for the last 10 days or so.
"He lost a little bit of weight. He's certainly a trier on the racetrack," Thomas said. "He left a little bit of himself at Pimlico. We just let him catch his breath a little bit."
Thomas said Super Saver has time for approximately seven more workouts before the Haskell.
Meanwhile, trainer Nick Zito said he would prefer to run Jackson Bend once before either the Jim Dandy on July 31 at Saratoga or the Haskell. With nothing suitable in New York, Zito said he is strongly considering running Jackson Bend in the Pegasus, a 1 1/16-mile race that has been moved from the Meadowlands to Monmouth Park and is a stepping-stone to the Haskell.
"If he ran there, it gives him enough time between races,'' Zito said. "Six weeks would benefit him. He could get a run over the track."
Meanwhile, Drosselmeyer had his third consecutive day of galloping Saturday at Belmont. He is being pointed to the Jim Dandy on July 31 at Saratoga.
"We'll get him up to Saratoga when it starts getting hot [at Belmont],'' trainer Bill Mott said.