Kentucky Derby & Kentucky Oaks Update: Monday, April 21

December 10, 2019

VICAR'S IN TROUBLE (No. 2) / GENERAL A ROD (No. 15) / HARRY'S HOLIDAY (No. 20) - Trainer Mike Maker reported Monday morning that his trio of Kentucky Derby possibilities "were doing just fine" at the nearby Trackside Training Center.

Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Vicar's in Trouble galloped at Trackside Monday morning and is scheduled to breeze at Churchill Downs this Saturday along with Harry's Holiday, who is owned by Skychai Racing, Terry Raymond and Jana Wagner.

J. Armando Rodriguez's General a Rod also galloped at Trackside Monday and is scheduled to work at Churchill Downs most likely on Wednesday.

DANZA (No. 6) - Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners' Danza, runaway winner of the Arkansas Derby (GI) in his most recent start, galloped after the morning renovation break at Churchill Downs under exercise rider Nick Bush.

Trained by Todd Pletcher, Danza is scheduled to get some Derby company in Barn 34 Tuesday with the arrival of Starlight Racing's Intense Holiday and Ken and Sarah Ramsey's We Miss Artie. Those two colts worked Sunday at Palm Meadows and are scheduled to ship to Louisville tomorrow.

A fourth Pletcher possibility, WinStar Farm and Twin Creek Racing Stables' Vinceremos is scheduled to come to Churchill Downs Wednesday from WinStar according to Ginny DePasquale, Pletcher's assistant here.

HOPPERTUNITY (No. 7)/CHITU (No. 12) / BAYERN (No. 23) - Tanma Corporation's Chitu and Kaleem Shah's Bayern worked a half-mile together in :47.60 after the morning renovation break over a fast track at Churchill Downs.

Chitu, with Joel Rosario up, started about three-quarters of a length in front of Bayern, who was ridden by Rosie Napravnik. Fractions for the work were :12, :23.80 and :35.60 with a five-furlong gallop out time of 1:01 for Chitu while Bayern went out in 1:00.20 and six furlongs in 1:13.40.

Jim Barnes, assistant to trainer Bob Baffert, said the works went well and that Baffert would arrive in Louisville on Wednesday.

Slated to arrive at Churchill Downs Monday afternoon was Karl Watson, Mike Pegram and Paul Weitman's Hoppertunity from Southern California.

WILDCAT RED (No. 9) - Honors Stable Corp.'s Wildcat Red, who worked Sunday at Gulfstream Park, is scheduled to ship to Churchill Downs on Tuesday for trainer Jose Garoffalo.

RIDE ON CURLIN (No. 11) - Daniel Dougherty's Ride On Curlin, runner-up in the Arkansas Derby (G1), galloped after the renovation break under exercise rider Bryan Beccia for trainer Billy Gowan.

Ride On Curlin is scheduled to work Saturday or Sunday depending on weather according to Gowan. Three-time Kentucky Derby-winning rider Calvin Borel has the mount for Derby 140.

TAPITURE (No. 13) - Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC's Tapiture, winner of the Southwest (GIII) and fourth in the recent Arkansas Derby (GI), hit the fast Churchill Downs track early to work five furlongs in 1:02.80.

The Steve Asmussen-trained son of Tapit, winner of the Kentucky Jockey Club (GII) over the Louisville surface last fall, was ridden by Abel Flores and was recorded by Churchill Downs' clockers in fractional splits of :13.40, :25.80 and :38. He galloped out six furlongs in 1:16.40. The work was Tapiture's first significant training move since the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park on April 12. He was on the track with Asmussen's second set of workers at approximately 6 a.m. (EDT).

"I loved how relaxed he was, pre-breeze and stuff," Asmussen said. "He went around there nice and smooth. I think that it's a very big deal for both him and (Winchell's Kentucky Oaks contender) Untapable to have all the time that they've spent here at Churchill previously - just to settle back in and get into a routine."

With the Arkansas Derby run behind Tapiture - a race in which he was favored and finished 7 ¼ lengths behind the victorious Danza - Asmussen is hoping for a step forward in the Kentucky Derby.

"It's not the trip that he needs," Asmussen said. "I think we identify that and hopefully he'll bounce back and run a huge race here. I think it (the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands) is a tremendously competitive race, with California Chrome possibly standing out from a 'numbers' standpoint. But he's got to do that here. We've got nothing but respect for him, but I think everybody else is kind of in the same boat."

Tapiture will be ridden in the Kentucky Derby by Ricardo Santana Jr., and his career record stands at 7-2-2-2 with earnings of $490,838 heading into the May 3 "Run for the Roses."

MEDAL COUNT (No. 16) - Spendthrift Farm's Medal Count, runner-up in the Blue Grass (GI) last time out, galloped after the renovation break under exercise rider Faustino Aguilar for trainer Dale Romans.

CANDY BOY (No. 17) - C R K Stable's Candy Boy, third in the Santa Anita Derby (G1) in his most recent start, was scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs on Monday afternoon after a flight from Southern California.

Trained by John Sadler, Candy Boy is scheduled to be ridden in the Run for the Roses by three-time Derby-winning rider Gary Stevens.

COMMANDING CURVE (No. 21) - West Point Thoroughbreds' Commanding Curve, third in the Louisiana Derby (GII) in his most recent start, galloped after the renovation break under exercise rider Emerson Chavez for trainer Dallas Stewart.

Commanding Curve stands 21st on the "Road to the Kentucky Derby Leaderboard Presented by

BIG BAZINGA (No. 25) - Derby Dreamers Racing Stable's Big Bazinga, fourth in the Blue Grass Stakes (GI) in his most recent start, was scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs from Keeneland shortly after noon Monday for trainer Katerina Vassilieva.

Big Bazinga remained at Keeneland after the Blue Grass in hopes that his 14 points accumulated on The Road to the Kentucky Derby Presented by would be enough to make the field.

Big Bazinga will be housed in Barn 35 with Vassilieva's assistant Amber Mayers overseeing preparations initially.


UNTAPABLE (No. 1)/ EUPHROSYNE (No. 8) - Gillian S. Campbell, Ralph Staver, Shelly Staver, Dan Clark and Greg Skoda's Euphrosyne, listed as "possible" for the Longines Kentucky Oaks, breezed five furlongs in the company of a workmate in 1:02.20 Monday morning. Abel Flores was aboard the daughter of Harlan's Holiday, who covered the distance in fractional splits of :13, :25.80 and :38 and galloped out six furlongs in 1:16.

Euphrosyne was on the track with Asmussen's first set of horses.

Untapable, who had worked five furlongs on Sunday, walked on Monday.

SUGAR SHOCK (No. 2) - On Cloud Nine LLC's Sugar Shock was given the morning off by trainer Doug Anderson.

"She just walked today," said Anderson, whose string of 30 horses is based at Prairie Meadows. "She had four hard races at Oaklawn."

A daughter of Candy Ride (ARG), Sugar Shock progressed from a maiden score to an allowance winner and then finished first in the Honeybee (GIII) but was disqualified before triumphing in the Fantasy (GIII).

Anderson said Sugar Shock probably would work "an easy five-eighths" with new rider Calvin Borel scheduled to be aboard.

AWESOME BABY (No. 4) / RIA ANTONIA (No. 12) - Christopher Dunn and Loooch Racing Stable's Ria Antonia was scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs Monday afternoon after a flight from Southern California for trainer Bob Baffert.

Kaleem Shah's Awesome Baby was not on the Monday flight. However, there are flights scheduled from California on Thursday and next Monday.

MY MISS SOPHIA (tie-No. 5) / IN TUNE (tie-No.5) / GOT LUCKY (No. 10) - Mathis Stable's My Miss Sophia and Hill 'n' Dale Equine Holdings' Got Lucky both jogged after the morning renovation break for trainer Todd Pletcher.

Humberto Zamora was aboard My Miss Sophia and Amy Mulen partnered Got Lucky.

Wertheimer and Frere's In Tune is scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs on Tuesday.

ROSALIND (No. 7) - Landaluce Educe Stables' Rosalind, dead-heat winner of the Ashland (GI) at Keeneland in her most recent start, was scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs early Monday afternoon.

ROOM SERVICE (No. 9) / AURELIA'S BELLE (No. 11) - Gary and Mary West's Room Service and James Miller's Aurelia's Belle galloped after the morning renovation break with exercise rider Calamity Compton in the saddle first on Room Service and then Aurelia's Belle.

HOUSE RULES - Trainer Allen Jerkens said he "does not plan to come" to Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Oaks with J.V. Shields Jr.'s House Rules.

House Rules had been No. 12 on the Kentucky Oaks leaderboard.

KISS MOON (No. 13) - Carl Pollard's Kiss Moon worked five furlongs in 1:00.60 under Julien Leparoux after the morning renovation break for trainer David Vance.

Working on her own and without the blinkers she wore in the runner-up effort in the Fantasy (GIII), Kiss Moon reeled off fractions of :12.20, :24.20 and :36.40 while galloping out six furlongs in 1:13.80.

"She only ran two weeks ago and I didn't want her to do too much," Vance said. "I was happy with the work and probably will come back next Sunday for her last work before the Oaks."

FIFTYSHADESOFGOLD (No. 14) - The Estate of Clarence Scharbauer's Fiftyshadesofgold galloped 1 ½ miles before 7 o'clock Monday morning under exercise rider Sara Escudero for trainer Bret Calhoun.

Fiftyshadesofgold is scheduled to work Friday.

UNBRIDLED FOREVER (No. 15) - Charles Fipke's Unbridled Forever, galloped after the renovation break under exercise rider Pedro Velez for trainer Dallas Stewart.

SWEET REASON (No. 16) - Treadway Racing Stable's Sweet Reason has not been ruled out of the Kentucky Oaks picture that would require a couple of defections to land a spot in the starting gate.

"I am probably leaning in a different direction because I didn't think there was a possibility of getting in," trainer Leah Gyarmati said of Sweet Reason, who is at Belmont Park. "I would not rule it out now if there is a chance."

THANK YOU MARYLOU (No. 17) - Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Thank You Marylou galloped at the nearby Trackside Training Center for trainer Mike Maker.

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