Mt. Joy Stables’ Smooth Air, runner-up in the March 29 Florida Derby (gr. I), continued his preparation for the 134th "Run for the Roses" April 13 with a sharp mile workout at Calder timed in 1:41, an impressive move over that surface.
Trained by Bennie Stutts Jr., Smooth Air has $290,000 in graded-stakes earnings after his runner-up effort behind Big Brown in the $1-million Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park. The homebred chestnut by Smooth Jazz is due to work again April 19 before boarding a Tex Sutton charter flight for Louisville the following day.
While Big Brown and Smooth Air are assured of their berths in the maximum field of 20 allowed in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), the status of Jet Set Racing’s Tomcito and Bea Oxenberg’s Hey Byrn, third and fourth in the Florida Derby, remains undetermined with graded-stakes earnings of $151,292 and $140,000, respectively.
Tomcito is at Keeneland. Trainer Dante Zanelli Jr. is pondering a start for him in the $325,000 Coolmore Lexington Stakes (gr. II) April 19 if he feels the Street Cry colt needs to add to his earnings in order to qualify for a Derby berth.
Hey Byrn proved best while winning the $150,000 Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III) at Gulfstream for trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. for the colt's first graded stakes win. But with others leapfrogging after the $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland and $1-million Arkansas Derby (gr. I) at Oaklawn April 12, the Put It Back colt will need some defections to make the Derby field.