G M B Racing's TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby (G2) runner-up Lone Sailor fired a bullet five-furlong move in :57 3/5 at Churchill Downs April 19 in preparation for the $2 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1).
With jockey James Graham aboard, Lone Sailor started nine lengths behind workmates Pearl's Opinion (who clocked :59 4/5) and Blaze a Trail (1:01) and clipped through eighth-mile splits of :11 4/5, :22 3/5, :34 and :45 3/5, before galloping out six furlongs in 1:11 3/5 and finishing two lengths in front, according to veteran Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols.
"The work was very fast," trainer Tom Amoss said. "However, the track was also really fast. So you have to take that into consideration more than the time."
Lone Sailor's breeze might have been the fastest five-furlong workout recorded at Churchill Downs in a decade, according to Nichols.
"The last horse I can recall going that fast was Hard Spun on April 30, 2007, when he went :57 3/5 with opening splits of :22 and :33.40 before running second in the Derby," Nichols said.
Lone Sailor, a son of Majestic Warrior, finished a neck behind Noble Indy in the March 24 Louisiana Derby and a half-length in front of third-place finisher My Boy Jack, who returned to win last weekend's Stonestreet Lexington Stakes (G3) at Keeneland.
"I think the Kentucky Derby has had some significant preps," Amoss said. "The Santa Anita Derby (G1) and the Florida Derby (G1) were both significant races. Lone Sailor is a horse that rightfully belongs in the Derby. He earned his way in there, but to win this race he has to improve."
Including Lone Sailor (stabled in Barn 29), there are five horses pointing to the Kentucky Derby stabled on the Churchill backstretch: Bravazo (trainer D. Wayne Lukas, Barn 44); Flameaway (trainer Mark Casse, Barn 36); Free Drop Billy and Promises Fulfilled (both trained by Dale Romans, Barn 4).
Flameaway, Free Drop Billy, and Promises Fulfilled are on target to breeze Saturday, according to their respective trainers. Bravazo could breeze Friday or Saturday, according to assistant trainer Sebastian "Bas" Nicholl.
Training hours at Churchill are 5:30-10 a.m. with renovation breaks at 7 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. Derby and Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) horses will have an exclusive training window beginning Saturday from 7:30-7:45 a.m.