California Chrome in beast mode ahead of Dubai World Cup prep

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February 12th, 2016

We might have lost Marshawn Lynch to retirement, but we’ve got another star athlete who’s laying claim to “beast mode” -- former Horse of the Year California Chrome, who continues to train strongly in the build-up to his prep race for the $10 million Dubai World Cup (G1).

“Chrome worked like a beast this morning,” assistant trainer Alan Sherman said Thursday, employing the phrase he’s used before to describe the power of the flashy California-bred.

Striding out in the early Dubai sunshine at Meydan, the 2014 Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness (G1)-winning champion blitzed seven furlongs in 1:24 2/5 and galloped out a mile in 1:36 2/5.

This was likely his stiffest work in advance of a February 25 handicap at about 1 1/4 miles, the distance of the World Cup scheduled for a month later on March 26. According to co-owner Taylor Made Stallions, California Chrome will get his final tune-up next week, but you’d expect that to be more of a maintenance move.

With World Cup rival Frosted having aired in the February 4 Maktoum Challenge Round 2 (G2) in track-record time, Chrome seeks to respond to that challenge. Favoritism for the world’s richest race is on the line.

Photo courtesy of Dubai Racing Club via Twitter.