Trainer Ken McPeek said Saturday that two of his promising 3-year-olds, Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey's Ten Cents A Shine and Stronach Stables Inc.'s Powerful Touch, are being pointed towards the $1 million Florida Derby (gr. I) for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles on March 15. Ten Cents a Shine, a game second in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (gr. II) at Churchill Downs on Nov. 30, finished in a dead-heat for first in an allowance race full of developing sophomores at Gulfstream in his 2003 debut on Friday. With jockey Jerry Bailey in the irons, Ten Cents A Shine rallied from through the stretch to finish on even terms with the undefeated Senor Swinger in the 1 1/16 miles test. "It was a powerful race," trainer Ken McPeek said. "This horse is still short on seasoning and is still learning. I was very pleased with his win and I'm pointing him for the Florida Derby."
Powerful Touch had won a pair of races at Aqueduct before finishing second in the Holy Bull Stakes (Ggr. III) at Gulfstream in his seasonal debut on Jan. 18. McPeek had been planning on running Powerful Touch in the $200,000 Fountain of Youth Stakes (gr. I) at 1 1/16 miles at Gulfstream on Feb. 15. Those plans have been shelved. "He bruised a hoof in the Holy Bull," McPeek said. "I thought he would recover enough that we could run him in the Fountain of Youth. But he's lost between a week and ten days of training and he's too good of a horse to rush. I don't think he'll make the Fountain of Youth but I'm still pointing him towards the Florida Derby."