Awesome Act Works Six Furlongs at Churchill
In his first work at Churchill Downs, Gotham Stakes (gr. III) winner Awesome Act breezed six furlongs in 1:12.60 under jockey Julien Leparoux, the fastest of four works at the distance April 20.
Accoring to Daily Racing Form, Awesome Act clocked the final furlong in :12.68.
The son of Awesome Again recorded his second work since finishing third to Eskendereya in the Wood Memorial (gr. I) April 3. In that race, which was only his second start on dirt, the chestnut colt lost a shoe coming out of the gate and had a wide trip while closing into a slow pace.
Awesome Act is expected to have one more work before starting in the May 1 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
Awesome Act is currently in the barn of Steve Asmussen, who is overseeing the colt while trainer Jeremy Noseda awaits a flight to Kentucky. Based in England, Noseda is one of thousands of people who cannot leave Europe for the U.S. due to the ash from an Icelandic volcano. The ash has shut down all major airlines from Europe into the U.S.
Asmussen and his assistant, Scott Blasi, oversaw the work and said Awesome Act went very well.
"They were very happy," said Tom Ludt, president of Vinery Stables, who co-owns the 3-year-old with Susan Roy. "We wanted 1:12 and change and that's what we got. He galloped out in 1:24 and change, I believe. He cooled out well and seems to be coming into the race the way we want him to."
Ludt said Awesome Act would likely have his final work April 26, when he would go five furlongs. Like the rest of the connections with Derby hopefuls, he is just crossing his fingers that the horse stays healthy.
"He's going in the right direction, we just want him to keep doing well," Ludt said. "We'll hope he gets a good draw and break. Last year, with Friesan Fire (who Vinery co-owned with Fox Hill Farm and went off as the Derby favorite while finishing 18th), he got stepped on and taken out of the race right out of the gate. It helps to have that experience going in this time, knowing anything can happen."
Awesome Act is 2-2-2 from eight lifetime starts. He made the first five starts of his career in England, with his one win coming on Kempton Park’s synthetic surface. In his first start in the U.S., Awesome Act closed strongly to finish fourth, beaten only 1 1/4 lengths, in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (gr. IIT) at Santa Anita last November.
A $240,000 Keeneland September 2008 yearling sale purchase, Awesome Act won Aqueduct’s Gotham Stakes (gr. III) by 1 1/4 lengths in his first start under Leparoux, who will have the mount in the Derby.
Out of the Mr. Prospector mare Houdini's Honey, he was bred in Kentucky by Flaxman Holdings.
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