Thursday, February 12, 2009

Stakes-level horse during a 6 furlong breeze:

X-axis is elapsed time.
Y-axes are heart rate in red, pace in blue.
Red line is heart rate response over workout.
Blue line is gallop speed over workout.

Above is a heart rate vs gallop speed chart of one of the best horses I've had the chance to monitor in 2008. This former $7500 claimer won a stakes races this season and had several other nice wins, always in the money over 13 starts.

His trainer wasn't afraid of hard work, as the chart above is from a 6 furlong breeze from the gate at Churchill in 1:15. His heart rate recovery is great for such a big piece of work on a hard surface, under 120bpm within 2min and under 100bpm within 5min post breeze. 

Now, before you say that 1:15 for 6 isn't a great time, this was from a gated start, which adds a few seconds to the time compared to rolling starts most often favored by trainers.

A common exercise day for this gelding was 2 separate 1 mile repetitions separated by a 2-3 min recovery interval. The first mile would go in about 2:15, the second more like 1:50.

Next up, a post with a chart like the one above from a horse suffering from EPM - you will note the vast differences. Post after that will compare workload/stress during a breeze over dirt vs polytrack, some big suprises there too.


  1. Is that really a former $7500 claimer and not $75,000. I had to read that twice. That's impressive, turning him into a stakes winner.

  2. Yep, $7500 at Churchill. I wouldn't say we 'turned' him into one exactly. We did some unique type workouts with him, but he had already won a few nice races before I came along.

    However, he did win 2 mile and a half efforts by a total of 29 lengths after doing several interval style workouts. And way, way back he had been claimed for $50k, so he had potential.