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Gemologist (inside) and Bodemeister round the turn together on Wednesday morning.

Thursday Kentucky Derby Workouts

Date: 05/03/2012

Thursday at Churchill Downs was not quite as warm with partly cloudy skies and a very crowded backside full of spectators. Most of the Derby horses and a few of the Oaks fillies came out at their special private workout session at 8:30 after the break. The only one not able to come out yet is Daddy Long Legs who won't clear quarantine until Friday morning. Below are photos for 18 Derby horses and 1 Oaks filly from this morning on the track. Full barn notes for today are available here.

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Alpha went to the track Thursday morning for what is a routine piece of exercise under rider Rob Massey. "We did the same thing we have been doing, back up to the sixteenth pole and gallop about a mile and three-eighths," McLaughlin said. "He's doing great, continues to train well and ate up well. Everything is going great."
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Bodemeister galloped 1 1/2 miles Thursday, the morning after drawing post No. 6 in the 20-horse field. Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert said it was good post for the Empire Maker colt, who soared to the top of the morning line with a runaway victory in the Arkansas Derby (G1). "Ideally, I would have liked to be outside of the heavy speed horses and I'm inside of them, but anything but the one hole," Baffert said.
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Creative Cause jogged a mile and galloped 1 3/8 miles with regular exercise rider John Cisneros in the irons. After causing something of a mini-buzz with a second day of walking for Creative Cause following a Monday workout at Churchill Dows, trainer Mike Harrington said dryly Thursday morning, "Well, I guess everybody will be satisfied now that the colt has gone to the track." Harrington explained to anyone who asked: "This is what I do. It's my routine. I've always done this. Trainers handle post-workout time differently."

Daddy Nose Best came out later in the morning than usual, during the 7 o'clock hour before the renovation break - so he could visit the starting gate and the paddock. The two went in separate sets, with Sabercat appearing first and Daddy Nose Best coming out in the last Asmusen set before the break. "They both schooled in the gate this morning and they'll both school in the paddock this afternoon," Asmussen said. "Hopefully the rest of the week goes as smooth as the last couple of weeks have."
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Done Talking turned in what his exercise rider deemed his best gallop since arriving at Churchill Downs, galloping 1 1/2 miles this morning after the renovation break with James "Bobo" Brigmon aboard.
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Dullahan galloped a much easier 1 1/2 miles than in recent days. "We galloped him slower today since we let him really stretch out his legs yesterday," Romans said. "We didn't want him to do too much out there today." The pronunciation of Dullahan's name has taken a new twist this week, owner Jerry Crawford correcting it to DULL-a-HONN, trainer Romans said he won't get tied up into semantics. "As long as they call him down the lane in front, that's all that matters to me," he quipped.
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El Padrino galloped 1 3/8 miles under Melvin Hernandez and stood in the starting gate.
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Gemologist galloped 1 3/8 miles under exercise rider Hector Ramos following the renovation break. Trainer Todd Pletcher said, "He is doing as well as he could possibly be doing. However good he is I think that's what we'll see on Saturday."
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Hansen was back for the first time on the Churchill Downs surface since he won the Breeders' Cup Juvenile on Nov. 5. Under regular exercise rider Joel Barrientos, Hansen schooled in the starting gate and galloped a mile and a quarter.

I'll Have Another continues to maintain his bounding style as he heads toward Saturday's Kentucky Derby. Trainer Doug O'Neill said, "He's just doing great. He has kept his nice stride and seems to love the racetrack. He's very settled and he cools out perfectly each day."

Liaison galloped 1 1/2 miles Thursday morning. The Indian Charlie colt is seeking his first win since taking the CashCall Futurity (G1) in December. He drew the outside post in the 20-horse field and is 50-1 on the morning line. Trainer Bob Baffert said, "He really tailed off form, but when he got here I gave him a chance and he likes the track and goes over it great."

Optimizer turned in a 1 1/2 miles gallop this morning after the renovation break and visited the paddock for the second straight day this afternoon for a schooling session during the races. "I don't know why I'm schooling him again to be honest with you," Lukas said jokingly. "Cover my bases, I guess? I'm 50-to-1."

Prospective galloped another steady 1 1/2 miles under the Twin Spires. "We're not very complicated around here," trainer Mark Casse said. "No bells and whistles. We're good to go. Knock on wood all is still well." His routine may have been vanilla, but Prospective's appearance was not. "He's a show off," Casse said. "He was strutting out there. He's a happy horse right now. If he's happy, I'm happy."

Rousing Sermon jogged a mile Thursday morning, the second day back from a five-furlong workout Tuesday. He went through the paddock again and stood in the gate. His trainer Jerry Hollendorfer said he probably would go to the gate again Friday. "From his post [seven], he'll probably have to stand in the gate a long time and we just want to be sure that's he's OK with that."

Sabercat came out later in the morning than usual, during the 7 o'clock hour before the renovation break - so he could visit the starting gate and the paddock. The two went in separate sets, with Sabercat appearing first and Daddy Nose Best coming out in the last Asmusen set before the break. "They both schooled in the gate this morning and they'll both school in the paddock this afternoon," Asmussen said. "Hopefully the rest of the week goes as smooth as the last couple of weeks have."

Take Charge Indy galloped 1 5/8 miles during the special time reserved for Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks horses at 8:30 a.m. with jockey Calvin Borel up. "I actually told Calvin this morning to ride him like you own him," trainer Pat Byrne said. "He's just too passionate about horses. You just throw him up there and he's like jelly up there. He's a natural rider."

Union Rags galloped a 1 1/2 miles under exercise rider Peter Brette Thursday morning at Churchill Downs.

Went the Day Well galloped a mile before standing in the starting gate and galloping just shy of another mile Thursday morning at Churchill Downs. Trainer Graham Motion will saddle the New York-bred son of Proud Citizen in attempt to win back-to-back runnings of the Kentucky Derby Saturday.

Trainer D. Wayne Lukas sent his filly Colonial Empress back to the today after an off day on Wednesday. The maiden daughter of 2003 Kentucky Derby runner-up Empire Maker galloped 1 1/2 miles after the renovation break. Lukas said many of the challenges that face Derby horses also are on the debate table for the Oaks fillies. "A lot of the same scenarios show up," Lukas reasoned. "The mile and an eighth for the fillies is a tough distance test for the fillies just like the mile and one-quarter is for the Derby colts. And you can't duplicate that 5:30 crowd on Saturday or Friday. It's unique to any other race." Two-time Oaks winner Corey Nakatani has the call Friday from post 12.
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