The last time we saw 2014 Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome was during his unsuccessful Triple Crown bid when he came up short in the Belmont. He injured his hoof in the process and his connections indicated at the time that the Kentucky Derby and Preakness champion would be taking some time off from training and competition. The hope was not only for his injury to heal but for California Chrome to get some rest after the grueling three races in six weeks Triple Crown schedule.
That was approximately a month ago and today California Chrome is doing very well. He’s currently enjoying some downtime at Harris Farms in Coalinga, California where his day reportedly consists of little more than ‘sleeping and eating’. And California Chrome is still a ‘rock star’. When asked if California Chrome understands his fame and popularity Harris Farm General Manager Dave McGlothlin smirked and said “Oh he knows.” Not surprising since California Chrome was famous for his poise and swagger while on the Triple Crown trail and once a rock star, always a rock star.
McGlothlin said that Chrome basically lives an unstructured existence that even includes ‘unlimited Twinkies’–something that you clearly shouldn’t begrudge a horse with $3.5 million in three year old earnings. He doesn’t have any formal exercise regimen but he’s allowed to ‘do whatever he wants as long as he doesn’t try to overdo it’. Everything looks good for California Chrome–the hoof injury suffered at the Belmont wasn’t as bad as originally anticipated. In fact, assistant trainer Alan Sherman said that it was pretty much healed by the time California Chrome arrived at Harris Farms. He’s put on some weight but that’s good since it shows he’s eating well–and that weight will come off quickly once he resumes training which is expected to be in mid to late August. Right now the working plan is to point him to the $5 million Breeders’ Cup Classic with a ‘tune up’ race–most likely at his home track of Los Alamitos–before that.
For the time being, however, McGlothlin says that the plan is to provide him with ’5 star accommodations’ and ‘make him feel like he’s in Hawaii’. And according to his connections California Chrome is enjoying the good life.