All eyes this weekend will be on the Oscars, but on Friday, February 24, they were on Oscar Performance. The son Kitten’s Joy put in a four furlong work in a time of :47 2/5 at the Palm Meadows Training Center. It was the second fastest work of the day and it was the fourth time Oscar Performance worked since winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1T) on November 4.

According to his trainer Brian Lynch, Oscar Performance is readying himself for his 2017 debut, which will likely be the Transylvania Presented by Keeneland Select Stakes (G3T) as part of Keeneland’s opening day spring meet on April 7.

“He’s in very good order,” said Lynch. “We gave him 60 days off after the Breeders’ Cup and … he seems to have matured a bit both physically and mentally. We’re excited about where he is at at this stage. If he keeps developing in the direction he’s taking us, there is nothing but upside to him.

“We’re hoping we’ll be in the big dances by the end of the year.”

After finishing sixth in his debut race at Saratoga Race Course last July, Oscar Performance earned a maiden win and followed that up with victories in the Pilgrim Stakes (G3T) and the aforementioned Breeders’ Cup. In a year with lesser competition he would have likely been an Eclipse Award finalist.

“I wasn’t surprised,” said Lynch. “You always hope that a horse who sort of dominated his category would get a little bit of a mention there but you know, I always felt the grass horses play second fiddle a bit when it comes to those awards.”

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