Major Derby Contenders Take to the Track at Churchill Downs
by Ron Mitchell
Date Posted: 5/1/2005 8:32:02 AM
Last Updated: 5/1/2005 4:00:33 PM

With the inclement weather that had set in over Louisville, Ky. finally out of the area, seven contenders for Saturday's Kentucky Derby (gr. I) breezed at Churchill Downs Sunday morning.

With so many horses working and only a few of them wearing the Derby saddlecloths with their names on them, the activity was not only busy but at times confusing, especially when observers tried to figure out which of Nick Zito's contenders were on the track at a given time.

With the temperature a brisk 36 degrees and the skies misty, two of Zito's five Derby horses were on the track before the maintenance break.

Zito-trained Bellamy Road, impressive 17-length winner of the Wood Memorial (gr. I), breezed five furlongs in 1:00 2/5 and Florida Derby (gr. I) runner-up Noble Causeway breezed five furlongs in 1:00, in company with stablemate Capac, who was timed in 1:01 1/5. Following the break, Zito's Florida Derby (gr. I) winner High Fly went five furlongs in 1:00 2/5.

Another Derby probable in the first set was D. Wayne Lukas-trained Going Wild, who went five furlongs in :59 3/5, with splits of :11 4/5, :23 3/5, :35 1/5, and :47 while galloping out six furlongs in 1:14.

With the sun breaking through and the temperature rising, the Todd Pletcher-trained pair of Bandini and Flower Alley went out after the break. Toyota Blue Grass (gr. I) winner Bandini was timed in 1:00 3/5 for five-eighths of a mile and Lane's End Stakes (gr. II) winner Flower Alley went the same distance in 1:00 2/5.

The other Derby probable to work Sunday was San Rafael (gr. I) winner Spanish Chestnut, who also went five furlongs in 1:00 2/5.

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