Double Eagle Ranch and Buena Suerte Equine’s 2009 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner Mine That Bird, working in company with Bird Empire, drilled five furlongs in :59.60 over a fast track June 15 at Churchill Downs.
With jockey Calvin Borel up, Mine That Bird started off two lengths behind Bird Empire and tracked his workmate for three furlongs. Mine That Bird drew alongside Bird Empire at the quarter pole and quickly surged by and finished 1 1/2 lengths in front.
Churchill Downs clockers caught Mine That Bird in fractions of :24.20, :35.80, :47.60, and out six furlongs in 1:13.40. It was the fastest of 25 works at the distance and the only drill in less than a minute. Bird Empire was timed in 1:00.20.
It was the fourth recorded work for Mine That Bird since arriving in the barn of trainer D. Wayne Lukas on May 20. Mine That Bird worked three furlongs in :35.20 under Dominic Terry on May 26, half-mile in :48 on June 2 under Borel, and five furlongs in 1:02 last week.
“He did what he was supposed to do and went by the other horse easily,” said Borel, who rode Mine That Bird to his Kentucky Derby victory. “It was a nice work.”
Lukas liked what he saw in Mine That Bird’s first work in company since taking over from Chip Woolley.
“I couldn’t have drawn it up any better,” Lukas said. “It was picture perfect and Calvin is such a good judge of pace. I wanted to let him stride out today and he leaped on that horse at the quarter pole.
“All the horses coming off the track this morning were sweating, but not him. He didn’t take a deep breath and he doesn’t sweat after going a mile and five-eighths, a mile and three-quarters in the morning.”
Lukas’ initial objective for Mine That Bird is the Whitney Handicap (gr. I) at Saratoga Aug. 7.