With regular exercise rider Nick Petro in the irons, the 4-year-old Macho Uno colt drilled four furlongs in :47 seconds.
“He’s very good,” said Kathy Ritvo, who trains Mucho Macho Man for Reeves Thoroughbred Racing. “He loves to train. He really relaxes, and he had a good work today.”
Though it was his regularly scheduled work day, Mucho Macho Man had one small adjustment made to his routine on Sunday, a remnant of the recent rainy weather.
“Instead of working at 5:30 [a.m.] like we usually do, I waited for the track to dry a little at 7:30,” Ritvo said. “We got a little traffic, but he worked good. There were two horses in front of him for someone else, and he came up on the inside of them and finished well.”
Mucho Macho Man captured the Grade 2 Suburban by 2 ½ lengths over Hymn Book at Belmont Park, running the nine furlongs in 1:46.58. It was his third win in four starts this year, including the Sunshine Millions Classic and Grade 2 Gulfstream Park Handicap.
The $750,000 Woodward will be run Saturday, September 1. It will be the second lifetime start at Saratoga for Mucho Macho Man, a veteran of all three Triple Crown races in 2011 who was third in a maiden race here on August 21, 2010.
In all, Mucho Macho Man has six wins, three seconds, four thirds and $1.3 million in purse earnings from 16 career starts.
“He’s serious about his work now,” Ritvo said. “He’s always been pretty serious, but he has really come into his own. He’s a June 15th foal, so it’s going to take him some time to mature. He’s always been a pretty smart horse; he’s just starting to grow into his body and put on a lot of muscle.
“What I love about him is he’s professional and he’s consistent,” added Ritvo. “You put the bridle on to go over in the afternoon, and he just settles right down. He’s a gentleman. It’s a lot of fun to watch him run.”
–NYRA Press contributed to this report.
Mucho Macho Man/NYRA Photo