Pyro, shown working April 7, worked in a heavy fog at Keeneland April 21.<br><a target="blank" href="">Order This Photo</a>

Pyro, shown working April 7, worked in a heavy fog at Keeneland April 21.
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Anne M. Eberhardt

Pyro Works Six Furlongs in...Who Knows?

If you were looking for a sign that Pyro has bounced out of his Toyota Blue Grass (gr. I) fiasco in top shape and is back to being the Pyro of old, you certainly didn’t get it Monday morning when the colt worked six furlongs in fog so thick it wasn’t able to be timed by the Keeneland clockers.

“I was on horseback and it was so foggy that I only saw the last 50 feet of the work,” trainer Steve Asmussen said of the 6:30 a.m. move. “But from what I saw, it looked fine.”

With exercise rider Dominic Terry aboard, Pyro worked inside the stakes-winning Noonmark, ridden by Pyro’s regular rider Shaun Bridgmohan. Noonmark is slated to start in the $250,000-added Churchill Downs Handicap (GII) on the Kentucky Derby undercard on Saturday, May 3.

“When you work three-quarters with Noonmark, I’d call it a serious drill,” Asmussen said. “Their instructions were to go in 1:14 and they usually hit their mark. Pyro seems just fine to me.”

The son of Pulpit, owned and bred by Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC, is scheduled to leave Keeneland Tuesday and will arrive at Churchill Downs in the afternoon.

Asmussen’s other Derby charge, Arkansas Derby runner-up and Lecomte (GIII) winner  Z Fortune, also worked Monday. His four-furlong breeze in :50.20 took place just after 6:45 a.m. at Churchill Downs with Corey Lanerie in the irons.

Churchill Downs’ clockers caught Z Fortune through fractions of :13.20, :25.60 and :38. The Siphon colt galloped out five furlongs in 1:04.20.

“He worked good,” Lanerie said. “I was told to go in :52 and I thought we went in :52. He did it that easy.”

Robby Albarado will have the mount on Z Fortune in the Derby.