Kentucky Derby 150 Early Week Notes

Source: KY HPBA

Steve Asmussen after G3 Lecomte winner & Louisiana Derby 4th Track Phantom works outside of stablemate Mugen, the five-eighth eighths in 1:00 with fractions of 12.2, 24.1 and 47.3 and out six furlongs in 1:13.3 Video starts with b-roll of the Asmussen-trained Our Pretty Woman, who needs a scratch in order to run in the Kentucky Oaks, and her work, followed by b-roll and work video of Track Phantom. (Video shot from grandstand courtesy Churchill Downs’ Kevin Kerstein).
Phil D’Amato, before Stronghold went out to work (five-eighths in 59.80) under jockey Joe Talamo Sunday at Churchill Downs for the Kentucky Derby. Stronghold’s first win came at Churchill Downs – an inordinately tough maiden race in which he beat fellow Derby contenders Resilience and Track Phantom – before he shipped out to D’Amato’s California base. The trainer talks about Stronghold, having to beat Bob Baffert to get enough points in the Santa Anita Derby to earn a Derby trip and notes that his first job at the racetrack was at Churchill Downs working for Chuck Simon.


Tap into Derek Simon’s Kentucky Derby Betting Guide – Learn some vital trends for putting your wagers and selections together.

D. Wayne Lukas after Arkansas Derby runner-up Just Steel works an easy half in 50.40 at Churchill Downs for Saturday’s 150th Kentucky Derby. “The Coach” also talks about his jockey, University of Texas McCombs School of Business grad Keith Asmussen. Video starts with b-roll (grandstand video courtesy Churchill Downs’ Kevin Kerstein).

Brian Coelho of Central California, who got into horse racing three years ago, was on hand at Churchill Downs to enjoy his first Kentucky Derby horse in the Arkansas Derby runner-up. “It’s a dream come true,” he says. Coelho now has part of more than 20 horses, saying that his wife “wanted a racehorse. When I do things, it’s usually jump with both feet in.”

Bill Mott on works by Wood Memorial winner Resilience and champion filly Just F Y I. (He also talks about the disappointment that his 2019 Kentucky Derby winner Country House, who was moved up to victory upon the interference disqualification of Maximum Security, was not able to race again and prove himself as a top horse.

From today’s Churchill Downs’ Derby barn notes:

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott is bringing Wood Memorial (GII) winner Resilience up to the Kentucky Derby (GI) in old school fashion. On Sunday, Mott sent Resilience out for his third work in 10 days as the colt covered four furlongs in :49.20 during the 7:30 a.m. training session.
Shortly after stablemate and champion Just F Y I completed her half-mile breeze in advance of the Kentucky Oaks (GI), Resilience got down to his own bit of serious business in a solo move with blinkers on. The son of Into Mischief was well in hand through fractions of :12.60 and :24.80 before galloping out in 1:01.40.
And on Just F Y I’s work:  In registering her third workout in 10 days, George Krikorian’s homebred filly continued to flaunt good energy as she broke off solo during the 7:30 a.m. training period with trainer Bill Mott looking on from his pony. Alvarado was a passenger through splits of :24.80 with a gallop out in 1:02.40.

Saturday morning:

Labor investigation targets area racing trainer Brown


Chad Brown after Toyota Blue Grass winner Sierra Leone worked in company with Tampa Bay Derby winner Domestic Product for Derby.
Jockey Tyler Gaffalione, who rides Sierra Leone in Derby but was aboard Domestic Product for work. “I’m living the dream right now,” Gaffalione said. Video starts out with some b-roll. Sierra Leone and Domestic Product’s splits were 13, 24.4, 36.2 and then out six furlongs in 1:13.1 and 1:26.1
Brad Cox on decision

made to run Lexington winner Encino in Derby after strong workout with Louisiana Derby winner Catching Freedom.


Danny Gargan – one of three Louisville-born trainers in next Saturday’s Kentucky Derby – talks about his contenders Dornoch and Society Man, who worked together a half-mile in a lively 46.3 seconds, galloping out five-eighths in 59 and 1:12.3.

Friday, April 26:

Owner-breeder Mike Repole addressed the media at Churchill Downs the morning that 2-year-old champion and Florida Derby winner Fierceness had his final work for the Kentucky Derby. This video is long but very entertaining – and sobering. Fierceness is the third 2-year-old champion that Repole and trainer Todd Pletcher have brought to the Derby. Uncle Mo was scratched the day before and Forte the morning of the race last year. Repole says that’s not bad luck – it’s good look that he’s back the very next year. Repole mentioned his close friendship with the late Kobe Bryant and said that puts having what you think is a bad day in perspective.
Todd Pletcher after Fierceness’ work at Churchill Downs with jockey John Velazquez. Video starts off with b-roll and work video (video shot from grandstand courtesy Churchill Downs’ Kevin Kerstein). Fierceness worked a half-mile in 48.4 after splits of 12.4, 24.4, 36.4 and then really picked it up on the gallop-out: Five-eighths in 1:00.3, 1:12.3 and 1:26 pulling up.
Saffie Joseph talks about Catalytic, who in his third start finished a well-beaten second to champion Fierceness in the Florida Derby – but earning the points to get in the Kentucky Derby. He also discusses being in the Derby the year after his horses, including Derby entrant Lord Mile, were scratched following the inexplicable collapsing and death of two of his horses. No wrong-doing was found, and Joseph was allowed back at Churchill Downs. But the circumstances cost him his 2022 Florida Derby winner White Abarrio, who went on to win the Grade 1 Whitney and Breeders’ Cup Classic for Rick Dutrow. Joseph says the experience made him a better person. Video begins with lots of b-roll of Catalytic training. Note: In this video, the interviewer incorrectly says that White Abarrio won the Met Mile. He was third in that race.