AFLEET ALEX: Multiple graded stakes winner Afleet Alex walked the shedrow a day after working a bullet five furlongs in :59 on Tuesday. Trainer Tim Ritchey said the Northern Afleet colt came out of the work in good order and would return to the track to jog Thursday morning.
Owned by Cash is King Stable, Afleet Alex will be ridden in the Kentucky Derby (gr. I) by Jeremy Rose.
ANDROMEDA'S HERO/BELLAMY ROAD/HIGH FLY/NOBLE CAUSEWAY/ SUN KING: If the weather cooperates, two-time Kentucky Derby winning trainer Nick Zito may work two of his five hopefuls on Thursday morning.
"Sun King would go about 6:45 and Andromeda's Hero maybe after the break, but again, that's weather permitting," Zito said of a forecast that calls for an 80% chance of rain in Louisville for Thursday and Friday. "If he (Andromeda's Hero) does not work tomorrow, he will stay here and work Friday and then go back (to Keeneland)."
Andromeda's Hero, owned by Robert LaPenta, has been stabled at Keeneland since his third-place finish in the April 16 Arkansas Derby (gr. II).
"He is doing super over there," Zito said. "If I only had the one horse (for the Derby), he'd still be over there."
The son of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus galloped Wednesday morning at Keeneland under regular exercise rider Megan Smillie. No rider has been confirmed for the Derby.
Sun King, owned by Tracy Farmer, galloped 1 ½ miles at Churchill Downs under regular exercise rider Carlos Correa. The son of 1999 Kentucky Derby winner Charismatic is looking to rebound from a fourth-place finish in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland April 16.
"That was not him in the Blue Grass," Zito said. "He's too good a horse to have run that race. I know he likes this track, he likes Churchill Downs."
Sun King finished third in last year's Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) and, should Wilko, Afleet Alex, and Consolidator all make the Derby field with Sun King, it would mark the first time the 1-2-3-4 Breeders' Cup Juvenile finishers had competed in the Kentucky Derby.
"That's good for the Breeders' Cup," Zito said. "It shows it was a quality group of 2-year-olds."
Edgar Prado has the mount on Sun King.
Zito's other three Derby hopefuls at Churchill Downs, Kinsman Stable's Bellamy Road, Live Oak Plantation's High Fly and My Meadowview Farm's Noble Causeway galloped 1 ½ miles. Carlos Correa was on Bellamy Road and Noble Causeway, and Maxine Correa was on High Fly. The trio is expected to work on Saturday, again, weather permitting.
Riding assignments for the trio are Javier Castellano on Bellamy Road, Jerry Bailey on High Fly and Gary Stevens on Noble Causeway.
BANDINI/COIN SILVER/FLOWER ALLEY: All three of trainer Todd Pletcher's hopefuls were on the track Wednesday morning.
Peachtree Stable's Coin Silver jogged two miles under Hall of Famer Angel Cordero Jr. in his first appearance on the track since winning the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II) at Keeneland April 23.
"His energy level was very good this morning and I was happy with that," said Pletcher, who has not confirmed a rider on Coin Silver for the Derby.
Flower Alley, owned by the Melnyk Racing Stable, galloped 1 ½ miles under Michelle Nihei. The Distorted Humor colt accomplished his morning duties without the blinkers he had worn the past few days. Jorge Chavez has the Derby call.
Michael Tabor and Derrick Smith's Bandini jogged two miles under exercise rider Frederic Buscail. John Velazquez has the Derby call on Bandini.
Pletcher is keeping an eye on the weather with regard to works for his hopefuls. "I am undecided on Coin Silver, maybe Monday or Tuesday, because I am on a different schedule with him," Pletcher said. "The other two will be Saturday or Sunday, but I can push it back to Monday. But the way the forecasts look now, it looks like it will be Sunday."
BUZZARDS BAY: Fog City Stable's Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) winner is scheduled to work at Santa Anita Park May 2. He will ship to Churchill Downs May 4.
CLOSING ARGUMENT: The Holy Bull (GIII) winner is stabled at Keeneland. Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin plans to ship the colt by van to Churchill Downs Friday, gallop on Saturday, and work on Sunday, weather permitting. If that schedule should change, the son of Successful Appeal will work at Keeneland Sunday and ship to Churchill Downs Monday.
CONSOLIDATOR/GOING WILD: Bob and Beverly Lewis' Consolidator was on the track at 6 a.m. for a five-furlong work with exercise rider Stacy Maker up. Clockers caught the move in 1:01.40 over a track labeled muddy with fractions of 12.40, 24.40, 36.40, 48.80, and an out time of 1:15.80.
"I thought it was good," trainer D. Wayne Lukas said. "The track is a little bit like peanut butter this morning. It was a little bit sticky, so I think the work was a little bit more significant.
"It was pretty much what we wanted, a good strong gallop out. At this point we are just trying to maintain the energy level."
Consolidator, who will be ridden Rafael Bejarano, comes into the Derby off a fifth-place finish in the Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I).
"I think the Blue Grass is a throw-out for everybody--Consolidator, Sun King," Lukas said. "I think you can throw it out for Bandini. I don't think the Blue Grass equates to anything. You see horses all the time do well in the Blue Grass or horses that do well at Keeneland in the third or fourth race on the card and come over here and you can't find them. You see horses that run back and come over here and win, so I don't put any stock in the Blue Grass.
"When he shows up, he's OK. He's a very nice horse. I am looking for him to do that. I think we are going to be fine. I know he likes this racetrack. He worked very well before the Blue Grass here."
Stablemate Going Wild galloped with exercise rider Derek Smith up.
"He was a handul this morning. He is really doing well here," Lukas said of Going Wild, who fifth in the Coolmore Lexington.
"I just want him to show up like he has been early in the spring," Lukas said. "I am going to rely on 25 years of experience and hope that maybe I am OK. I am not going to try to sell him to you, because I think that would be impossible, but I think that he will make some noise in there. He likes this racetrack and he is a nice horse. I know I am not wrong there. I've got two bad (races) on him that will just drive the odds up, but three of the four I won here had big odds."
No rider has been confirmed for Going Wild.
"I am still looking at the rider situation," Lukas said. "It's going to be a hungry, young kid."
GENERAL JOHN B: Ross McLeod's Santa Anita Derby runner-up is stabled at Santa Anita but is scheduled to ship to Churchill Downs Saturday. Trainer Roger Stein plans a five-furlong breeze Monday.
GIACOMO: Mr. and Mrs. Jerome Moss' son of Holy Bull is stabled at Hollywood Park. Trainer John Shirreffs plans to breeze the colt Sunday and ship to Churchill Downs May 4.
GREATER GOOD: Lewis Lakin's Greater Good galloped a mile and a half Wednesday morning under exercise rider Betsy Couch. The Bob Holthus trainee is scheduled to work six furlongs Thursday morning with regular rider John McKee up.
GREELEY'S GALAXY: B. Wayne Hughes' Greeley's Galaxy visited the starting gate and galloped a mile and a half before the renovation break with exercise rider Mikki Fincher up. Trainer Warren Stute is scheduled to arrive in Louisville from his California base Wednesday night with a Thursday work set, most likely after the renovation break. Jockey Kent Desormeaux has the Derby call.
HIGH LIMIT: Mary and Gary West's Louisiana Derby (gr. II) winner High Limit galloped after the renovation break with exercise rider Jose Cuevas up. Ramon Dominguez is slated to ride the Bobby Frankel trainee in the Derby.
SORT IT OUT: Stonerside Stable and Preferred Pals Stable's Sort It Out jogged this morning and is scheduled to gallop tomorrow, according to John Good, an assistant to trainer Bob Baffert.
Good said a decision a Kentucky Derby bid for the son of Out of Place would be made after he works sometime this weekend. Baffert will be in town at that time to oversee the breeze.
The distance of the work and a possible jockey for the Coolmore Lexington Stakes (GII) runner-up have not been determined.
WILKO: The winner of the Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile is stabled at Hollywood Park. Trainer Craig Dollase plans to work the colt on Saturday, weather permitting, and then ship Wilko to Churchill Downs on Sunday.
KENTUCKY OAKS 131 NOTES - April 26, 2005
WEDNESDAY'S TOP STORY:
* DANCE AWAY CAPOTE ARRIVES AT CHURCHILL DOWNS
DANCE AWAY CAPOTE - Traveled by van from Keeneland Wednesday afternoon.
The Graham Motion-trained filly is stabled in Barn 34 and is scheduled to gallop 1 ½ miles on Thursday and breeze five furlongs on Friday.
Jockey John Velazquez, who has the mount on the daughter of Capote in the Kentucky Oaks, will be in for the work.
IN THE GOLD - Live Oak Plantation's In the Gold galloped Wednesday morning over the training track at Keeneland with Jorge Abreu up.
The Nick Zito-trained daughter of Golden Missile, who will be ridden in the Oaks by Rafael Bejarano, comes into the race off a triumph in the Stonerside Beaumont (GII) at Keeneland on April 14.
"She's a very consistent filly," Zito said, "and we have had a lot of luck with the Beaumont. Bird Town ran it and then won the Oaks, and that kind of got us going."
Zito said In the Gold would work at Keeneland either Thursday or Friday, depending on weather.
MEMORETTE - Betty Currin's Memorette galloped a mile and a half under Joe Deegan before the renovation break.
Trainer Bill Currin is scheduled to arrive from his California base on Tuesday. Ignacio Correas, who is overseeing the filly's Oaks'
preparations, said Memorette would probably work Friday.
Kent Desormeaux is scheduled to ride in the Oaks.
RUGULA - Al and Saundra Kirkwood's Rugula galloped under exercise rider Bobby Warren.
The Grant Forster trainee is scheduled to work Friday with regular rider Greta Kuntzweiler up.
Forster said after the work a decision will be made on whether to go in the Oaks or the La Troienne (GIII).
RUNWAY MODEL - The Alcibiades Stakes (GII) winner galloped 2 miles under exercise rider Georgia Jackson. The daughter of Petionville will work five furlongs either tomorrow or Friday.
SIS CITY - Stonerside Stable's Ashland (GI) winner Sis City jogged after the break with exercise rider Michelle Nevin up.
Trainer Rick Dutrow is scheduled back in Louisville Friday to oversee Sis City's preparations. Edgar Prado is scheduled to ride in the Oaks.
SUMMERLY - Winchell Thoroughbreds' Summerly returned to the track to gallop Wednesday morning under exercise rider Carmen Rojas.
The filly had worked six furlongs in 1:13.40 on Monday and walked the shedrow Tuesday.
Jerry Bailey has the Oaks call.
BARN TALK - Trainer Bernie Flint has indicated that Discreet Hero and Tempus Fugit are possible starters for undercard races during Derby Week. Discreet Hero may run in the Alysheba Stakes and Tempus Fugit in the Louisville Breeders' Cup (GII).
Both races are on the Kentucky Oaks (GI) undercard on Friday, May 6.
Tempus Fugit, winner of the Likely Exchange Stakes at Turfway Park, breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 on Thursday at Churchill Downs - a move that was second only to a work by Kentucky Derby contender Afleet Alex among 29 at the distance... Jeff Mullins will ship Mighty Beau with Kentucky Derby (GI) starter Buzzards Bay for the $100,000 Aegon Turf Sprint (GIII) on the Kentucky Oaks (GI) undercard. The son of Rainbow Prospect is coming off a strong second in Keeneland's Shakertown on April 16. He was compromised by a slow start that day, but closed from last and was beaten a half-length by Soaring Free. "I would've liked to see what he would have done if he got away clean," said Mullins. Garrett Gomez will ride Mighty Beau, the runner-up in last year's Aegon Turf Sprint and a winner of 8 of 36 career starts and earnings of $440,621... Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin will bring three starters along with Kentucky Derby runner Closing Argument for stakes races Derby Week.
Mustanfar who is the most accomplished of McLaughlin's shippers will start in the $400,000 Woodford Reserve (GI). The son of 1990 Kentucky Derby winner Unbridled will have Jose Santos aboard for the 1 1/8 mile event on the turf.
Bending Strings will run on Derby Day in the seven-furlong $250,000 Humana Distaff (GI) and Dynamite Lass will start in the $100,000 Edgewood Stakes.
WORK TAB (Track: MUDDY) - Bruce Lunsford's Shirley Jones Handicap (GII) winner Madcap Escapade breezed five furlongs in 1:00.80, the fastest of 12 moves at the distance. She is being pointed toward the Humana Distaff (GI) by trainer Frank Brothers... Mr. Spock, third in the Count Fleet Stakes worked four furlongs in 50.20.