The exclusive training period for Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks contenders at Churchill Downs from 8:30-8:45 a.m began Saturday. The live stream presented by TwinSpires.com is available at multiple sources including on Twitter, Facebook, and the Derby website.
Albaugh Family Stable's J Boys Echo (left) breezed a half-mile in :49.20 Sunday at Churchill Downs in preparation for the $2 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) on Saturday, May 6. J Boys Echo, with regular exercise rider Tammy Fox aboard, was clocked in splits of :12, :24.40 and :37 before galloping out five furlongs in 1:02.20 and three-quarters of a mile in 1:16 over a "fast" surface. "It was a really solid work," trainer Dale Romans said. "We'll come back next Saturday and go a little faster. Only one hurdle left until the first Saturday in May."
The colt's owner, Albaugh Family Stable, is based in Des Moines, Iowa with state's richest man, Dennis Albaugh, at the helm. Albaugh's net worth is estimated at $1.5 billion after he started a fertilizer company in 1979. Today, Albaugh, LLC is recognized as the largest, American-based, manufacturer and formulator of agricultural crop protection products. The Albaugh Family Stable is no stranger to success in the racing industry. They won the 2016 Blue Grass with Brody's Cause, who finished seventh in the Kentucky Derby. J Boys Echo is stabled in Barn 4.
With inclement weather on Saturday, Sunday morning was busier for Kentucky Derby contenders during Churchill Downs' exclusive training session from 8:30-8:45 a.m. A video replay of the action can be viewed online here.
Blue Grass (G2) third-place finisher McCraken galloped 1 3/4 miles with regular exercise rider Yoni Orantes up. The Ghostzapper colt is scheduled to breeze Monday at 8:30 a.m. for trainer Ian Wilkes.
Two of trainer Steve Asmussen's Derby contenders came to the track after the renovation break – Sunland Derby winner Hence (left) and Arkansas Derby (G1) third-place finisher Lookin at Lee. Hence is scheduled to breeze Monday morning between 6-6:30 a.m.
Gotham winner J Boys Echo breezed a half-mile in :49.20 with regular exercise rider Tammy Fox aboard.
Arkansas Derby winner Classic Empire trained at 6:30 a.m. with exercise rider Martin Rivera aboard. The colt will continue to train in the first two sets, according to assistant trainer Norm Casse.
Other Kentucky Derby contenders on the grounds include Rebel Stakes (G2) third-place finisher Untrapped, Florida Derby (G1) runner-up State of Honor and Florida Derby third-place finisher Gunnevera, who arrived at Barn 41 late Saturday night after a van ride from Florida.
At Trackside Louisville, Churchill Downs' satellite training facility located five miles from the main track, Spiral Stakes (G3) winner Fast and Accurate breezed five furlongs in 1:00.20. Part ownership in the colt was recently acquired by Olympic gold medal skier Bode Miller.
Sunday marked the return of Fantasy (G3) winner Ever So Clever (left) to the Churchill Downs' work tab after she breezing five furlongs in 1:02 for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen in preparation for the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1). Ever So Clever recorded splits of :25.80 and :37.60 before galloping out six furlongs in 1:15.40 and seven furlongs in 1:29.80. Ever So Clever began her Road to the Kentucky Oaks journey at Churchill Downs with a runner-up finish in the Pocahontas Stakes (G2) and a third-place finish in the Golden Rod (G2) as a juvenile.
Other Kentucky Oaks contenders who trained Sunday at Churchill Downs included Fair Grounds Oaks (G2) winner Farrell, who is expected to breeze Wednesday or Thursday; Gazelle (G2) winner Miss Sky Warrior for trainer Kelly Breen; and Gazelle (G2) runner-up Lockdown for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.
Gulfstream Park Oaks (G2) winner Salty had the day off and will return to the track Monday for trainer Mark Casse.
Likely starters in the 143rd running of the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) to be run for 3-year-old fillies at 1 1/8 miles on Friday, May 5: Abel Tasman (Mike Smith), Daddys Lil Darling (Robby Albarado), Ever So Clever (Luis Contreras), Farrell (Channing Hill), It Tiz Well (Corey Nakatani), Miss Sky Warrior (Paco Lopez), Paradise Woods (Flavien Prat), Sailor's Valentine (Corey Lanerie), Salty (Joel Rosario), Tequilita (Luis Saez), Wicked Lick (Brian Hernandez Jr.) and Yorkiepoo Princess (Irad Ortiz Jr.).
Possible starters within the Top 14 on the preference list: Chanel's Legacy (Alex Birzer) and Lockdown (TBA).
Next up in order of preference: Vexatious (Kent Desormeaux), Jordan's Henny (TBA), Benner Island (TBA), Someday Soon (TBA), Mopotism (TBA) and Shane's Girlfriend (TBA).
Trainer Chad Brown's Blue Grass (G2) runner-up Practical Joke (left( is scheduled to van to Churchill Downs from Keeneland on Monday and will be stabled in Barn 42.
Wood Memorial (G2) winner Irish War Cry is expected to arrive at Churchill Downs from Maryland on April 30 or May 1, according to Director of Stalls Steve Hargrave.
Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner Gormley breezed six furlongs in 1:15.80 Saturday at Santa Anita for trainer John Shirreffs. The Malibu Moon colt is expected to ship from California to Churchill Downs on May 1.
Arkansas Derby (G1) fourth-place finisher Sonneteer is expected to arrive at Churchill Downs on April 29. The colt will need two defections to make the field for the "Run for the Roses."
Triple Crown quick links:
2017 Belmont Stakes Entries - A field of 12 was entered for the Belmont Stakes with Irish War Cry the lukewarm favorite at 7-2. Get all the horses, post positions, odds, and free past performances here.
Analyzing the Belmont Stakes Contenders - Our annual analysis using popular angles and statistical trends to see who best matches the profile of a Belmont winner. This year the top two are clear with a 5-way tie for third spot.
Cloud Computing wins the Preakness (G1) - Cloud Computing pressed the pace and got up to win the 2017 Preakness (G1) by a head over Classic Empire with Senior Investment third. Favorite Always Dreaming faded to 8th. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Preakness Undercard Stakes Results - There were 7 other stakes on Preakness day, highlighted by the Dixie Stakes (G2) on the turf won by World Approval, the Gallorette (G3) won by Cambodia, and the Maryland Sprint Stakes (G3) won by Whitmore. Get the results, charts, and photos for all 7 races here.
Black-Eyed Susan Day Results - Actress broke her maiden in the mud to win the 2017 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) at Pimlico on Friday. There were 6 other stakes on the card including the Pimlico Special (G3) won by Shaman Ghost, the Allaire Dupont Distaff (G3) won by Terra Promessa, and the Miss Preakness Stakes (G3) won by Vertical Oak. Get the results, charts, and photos for all 7 races here.
Thursday Preakness Photos - Two photos each and comments for all 10 Preakness horses from Thursday morning at Pimlico. Everyone galloped today since training ends early Friday.
2017 Alibi Breakfast - The traditional Alibi Breakfast was held on Thursday May 18, before the 142nd running of the Preakness Stakes. Connections of some of the 10 Preakness entrants were on hand to swap stories about their horse as well as watch the presentation of the annual awards.
2017 Preakness Entries - A field of 10 was entered for the 142nd Preakness on Saturday, with Kentucky Derby winner Always Dreaming drawing post 4 as the 4-5 favorite. Classic Empire is second choice at 3-1 from post 5. Get the horses, posts, odds, and free past performances here.
Wednesday Preakness Photos - Two photos each and comments for all the Preakness horses from Wednesday afternoon at Pimlico, except Multiplier who arrived late yesterday.
Tuesday Preakness Photos - Photos and comments for seven of the Preakness horses from Tuesday afternoon at Pimlico, including Always Dreaming, Classic Empire, and five others who arrived today.
Preakness Entry Rules - the field is limited to 14 starters, here is how they determine the order of preference if more than that enter.
Preakness Infield - After the massive tightening of the rules which resulted in a huge drop in attendance in 2009, things have relaxed slightly and you can buy a special "all you can drink beer" Mug Club ticket now.
Preakness Traditions - Black-eyed Susans to the winner, the Woodlawn Vase trophy, the Alibi Breakfast, painting the weather vane, and more.
Always Dreaming romps in the 2017 Kentucky Derby (G1) - Favorite Always Dreaming led most of the way to win the Kentucky Derby (G1) by 2 3/4 lengths in the slop at Churchill Downs on Saturday. Longshots Lookin at Lee and Battle of Midway finished second and third. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Kentucky Derby Undercard Stakes Results - There were 6 other stakes on the card today with the Derby, including the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (G1) won by Divisidero, the Humana Distaff (G1) won by Paulassilverlining, the Churchill Distaff Turf Mile (G2) won by Roca Rojo, the Churchill Downs Stakes (G2) won by Limousine Liberal, the American Turf (G2) won by Arklow, and the Pat Day Mile (G3) won by Wild Shot. Get the results, charts, and photos here.
Abel Tasman wins the 2017 Kentucky Oaks (G1) - Abel Tasman came from last early on to win the Kentucky Oaks (G1) by 1 1/4 lengths in the slop at Churchill Downs on Friday. Daddys Lil Darling was second and Lockdown was 3rd while favorite Paradise Woods faded to 11th. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Kentucky Oaks Undercard Stakes Results - There were 5 other stakes on the card today with the Oaks, including the La Troienne (G1) won by Big World, the Alysheba (G2) won by Bird Song, the Eight Belles (G2) won by Benner Island, the Twin Spires Turf Sprint (G3) won by Green Mask, and the Edgewood Stakes (G3) won by La Coronel. Get the results, charts, and photos here.