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Dublin turned in a final breeze at Churchill Downs on April 25.
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Dublin Works Five Furlongs at Muddy Churchill

The track at Churchill Downs was drying out April 25 after heavy rains.

Under a slight breeze that was helping dry out the Churchill Downs track after heavy rains the previous day, trainer D. Wayne Lukas sent grade I winner Dublin out early April 25 for his final breeze leading up to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).

With jockey Terry Thompson aboard, Dublin breezed five furlongs in 1:02 4/5 over the muddy track in company with Luv Gov. Dublin began about 2 ½ lengths behind his workmate and then went in fractional splits of :12 2/5, :24 1/5, :37 2/5, and :50 2/5. He was timed in 1:17 4/5 as he galloped out six furlongs following the official work.

The Hall of Fame trainer said he opted to send the son of Alfeet Alex out shortly after the track opened for training rather than wait until the time designated for Derby and Kentucky Oaks (gr. I) horses only to be on the track following the morning maintenance break.

"I didn’t have a choice because of the way the track is right now," Lukas said of the surface that had been sealed overnight. "It is smooth and good right now. But it’s a little gummy. You won’t be seeing any bullet (fast) works today."

Of the breeze itself, Lukas said, "I loved the way he went." But then he quipped, "It’s just like there’s never an ugly bride on wedding day, there are never any bad works during Derby week."

Owned by Robert C. Baker and William L. Mack, Dublin won the Hopeful Stakes (gr. I) as a 2-year-old of 2009. This year, the colt has finished second in the Southwest Stakes (gr. III), third in the Rebel Stakes (gr. II), and third in the Arkansas Derby (gr. I), all at Oaklawn Park.