OZONE PARK, N.Y. - El Kabeir, winner of the Grade 3 Gotham and Grade 3 Jerome at Aqueduct Racetrack, had his final tune-up for Saturday's Grade 1, $1 million TwinSpires.com Wood Memorial this morning, breezing five furlongs over Belmont Park's training track in 1:01.12, the fastest of 27 works at the distance.
With exercise rider Simon Harris aboard, El Kabeir went out shortly after the second renovation break at 9:30. Trainer John Terranova caught the gray son of Scat Daddy going the first quarter in :25 and change, and coming home in :35 3/5.
"The clockers got him galloping out in 1:13 3/5, just as easy as can be," added Terranova, who trains El Kabeir for Zayat Stables. "He went great, great. We were really happy. It went perfect, just as we were hoping. He came out great and is cooling out really well."
Among those expected to face El Kabeir in the 1 1/8-mile Wood, New York's final major prep for the Kentucky Derby, are the fourth- and fifth-place finishers from the Gotham, West Point Thoroughbreds' Toasting Master and Phil Birsch's Tendencur, along with Godolphin Racing's Frosted, most recently fourth in the Fountain of Youth.
Also running will be the Todd Pletcher-trained duo of Far From Over, who bested El Kabeir in the Grade 3 Withers and then returned to Palm Meadows Training Center, and last year's Grade 1 Champagne victor, Daredevil, who went a half in 48.85 on Saturday at Belmont.
Far From Over and the Kiaran McLaughlin-trained Frosted will be flown from Florida to New York on Thursday.
McLaughlin said Monday morning that Ocean Knight, who had been under consideration for the Wood, would not make the trip after working 1:00.97 at Palm Meadows.
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