ELMONT, N.Y. -- It isn't the Triple Crown, but Better Talk Now, the 9-year-old veteran gelding who trains at the Fair Hill Training Center, will be going for his own prestigious feat tomorrow when he attempts to win the $400,000 Woodford Reserve Manhattan Handicap about an hour before Big Brown is to run in the Belmont Stakes.
A Manhattan double hasn't been accomplished in nearly two decades, not since Milesius swept the race in 1988 and 1989.
Better Talk Now is the 2004 Breeders' Cup Turf champion and has five Grade I victories. The winner of more than $4 million in purses, he will take on a strong field of 11 other horses over the 1 1/4 -mile turf course.
"He's looking better than ever," said Adrian Rolls, assistant trainer for Graham Motion. "Graham and I look at each other and say, 'This is crazy, as old as he is, and looking better all the time.' But that's how he is. He struts like a 2-year-old, and we're hoping for a big race."