ELMONT, N.Y. – After winning four stakes last weekend at Belmont Park, trainer Christophe Clement is hoping to keep the momentum going with major contenders in Saturday’s two turf stakes at Belmont.
Clement will send out Victorine in the $200,000 Pebbles Stakes for 3-year-old fillies at a mile and Lull in the $100,000 Floral Park Stakes for fillies and mares at six furlongs.
Victorine will be making her first start for Clement in the Pebbles. A two-time winner from six starts in France with Alex Henri-Pantall, Victorine finished in a dead heat for fourth in the Grade 2 Sands Point at 1 1/8 miles last month at Belmont. Pantall was listed as the trainer for that race.
“She ran well, she just flattened out at the end,” Clement said. “She’s excited us since she came to me. She seems to run on any type of ground.”
Clement noted that on Oct. 1 Victorine worked in company with Lonely Road, who won Monday’s Grade 3 Matron.
Clement is scheduled to run Lull in the Floral Park. A multiple graded stakes winner at a mile, Lull is coming off a neck loss to Ruby Notion in the Kentucky Downs Ladies Turf Sprint on Sept. 8.
Lull does not like soft ground, and with rain in the forecast, Clement said it is possible she could scratch.
“Lull would not run on softer ground,” he said.
Meanwhile, Clement was still relishing the four stakes wins from the holiday weekend. On Saturday, he won the $150,000 Belmont Turf Sprint Invitational with Disco Partner and the Grade 3, $500,000 Hill Prince Stakes with Have At It. On Monday, Clement won the Grade 3 Knickerbocker with Blacktype – Clement’s seventh win in that race – and the $150,000 Matron Stakes with Lonely Road.
“Very nice,” Clement said. “It’s been a frustrating year on and off. It’s nice to know when you have the right horses you can still perform at the better level in New York.”
Clement took particular satisfaction in Blacktype’s victory in the Knickerbocker as he was running him back just 11 days after he won an allowance race here.
“I trained him like a claimer,” he said. “I just jogged him, I did not gallop him, and it’s great that it worked out. For 10 days, I kept thinking, ‘What can I do to beat the bounce?’ and we did it. When you do things a little bit differently and it works, it’s always very rewarding.”
Clement said Blacktype would likely aim to the $150,000 Artie Schiller Stakes at Aqueduct on Nov. 10.
Disco Partner and Pure Sensation, third in the Belmont Turf Sprint Invitational, will be aimed at the Breeders’ Cup Turf Sprint, Clement said, adding he would keep an eye on the weather as both horses prefer firm ground.
Clement said Lonely Road could be considered for the inaugural Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint or possibly the Juvenile Fillies Turf, but he was noncommittal on Wednesday.
Have At It could be considered for any of four stakes, including the Gio Ponti at Aqueduct on Nov. 23 or the Grade 1 Hollywood Derby on Dec. 1 at Del Mar.
This story originally appeared on DRF.com.
Visit DRF.com for additional news, notes, wagering information, and more.