Today was the first day for the exclusive 7:30-7:45am training session for Kentucky Derby and Oaks horses, which will continue until Derby Day. Video for this morning's works can be viewed here on YouTube. Videos of individual horses in timed works can be found here.
Kentucky Derby and Oaks contenders kicked it into high gear Saturday morning with several horses around the country logging their most serious workouts prior to the first weekend in May. At Churchill Downs, Derby contenders Cyberknife (six furlongs, 1:12.20), Smile Happy (five furlongs, 1:00.40), Tiz the Bomb (five furlongs 1:00.20) and Un Ojo (:59.40) all breezed for the "Run for the Roses.” At Keeneland, Blue Grass (G1) winner Zandon worked a half-mile in :48.60 before he ships to Churchill Downs on Sunday.
Cyberknife on Saturday morning
Gold Square's Arkansas Derby winner Cyberknife breezed at 5:15 a.m. (all times Eastern) with jockey Florent Geroux in the saddle. The son of Gun Runner worked on the outside of stablemate Koolhous. Cyberknife started two lengths back at the five-furlong marker and finished two lengths in front at the wire. Cyberknife continued his strong move around the far turn and completed seven furlongs in 1:24.60, according to Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols.
"It was a really strong move and he's a really good work horse,” Geroux said. "He continues to improve as time goes on and he showed that winning the Arkansas Derby. Even going back to his allowance win before the Arkansas Derby he showed a new level of class.”
During the 7:30-7:45 a.m. training period reserved for Kentucky Derby and Oaks contenders, Lucky Seven Stable's Blue Grass Stakes (G1) runner-up Smile Happy and Magdalena Racing Lessee's Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) winner Tiz the Bomb breezed in company. Smile Happy and jockey Corey Lanerie began the work about one length in front of Brian Hernandez Jr. and Tiz the Bomb. Hernandez and Tiz the Bomb moved to the outside of Smile Happy and finished in tandem at the wire.
"We were just looking for an easy move today and we got that,” trainer Kenny McPeek said. "We'll probably do the same thing again next week.”
Un Ojo at the Withers (G3)
Cypress Creek Equine's Un Ojo arrived at Churchill Downs on Tuesday with trainer Ricky Courville's son, Clay, in tow. Clay breezed Un Ojo through opening eighth-mile splits of :11.60, :23, :35 and :47.60. Un Ojo galloped out six furlongs in 1:12.20.
"It's amazing being here at Churchill Downs,” Clay said. "I've been here before but nothing like this. (Un Ojo) is getting over the track really well.”
At Keeneland, Jeff Drown's Zandon completed eighth-mile fractions of :12.80, :25.20 and :37. He galloped out five furlongs in 1:00.80, six furlongs in 1:13.80 and seven-eighths of a mile in 1:27.60. Trainer Chad Brown reported Zandon will ship to Churchill Downs on Sunday and be stabled in Barn 25.
Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) contenders Hidden Connection (five furlongs, 1:00.60), Nostalgic (four furlongs, :48.80) and Venti Valentine (four furlongs, :47.20) all worked Saturday morning at Churchill Downs.
Sunday morning, likely Kentucky Derby and Oaks favorites Epicenter and Echo Zulu are both scheduled to work for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen.
Saturday was the first morning for the exclusive Oaks/Derby training window from 7:30-7:45 a.m. Fans can watch the livestream on the Kentucky Derby's social media channels. Between Saturday, April 23 and Wednesday, May 4, Churchill Downs will be open free-of-charge daily from 7-10 a.m. so guests can watch the nation's top 3-year-old Thoroughbreds train toward their engagements in this year's Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks.
Horses train on Churchill Downs' main track daily from 5:15-10 a.m. Beginning Saturday, there will be an exclusive training window only for Derby and Oaks participants from 7:30-7:45 a.m. following the 7-7:30 a.m. renovation break. Those horses will be identified by special saddle towels which include their names: yellow saddle towels for Derby horses and pink saddle towels for Oaks contenders.
Kentucky Derby Morning Works presented by TwinSpires.com will begin Monday and air on www.kentuckyderby.com/works, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Fans in attendance will be able to watch the show on the track's Big Board and infield televisions. The first two days of Kentucky Derby and Oaks training (Saturday and Sunday) also will be livestreamed on the Kentucky Derby's social media channels, but without commentary.
Guests can enter Churchill Downs through the Paddock Gate and should park for free in the nearby White Lot for convenient entry. Guests will be directed to Sections 115-117 to watch the morning workouts.
No outside food and beverage is allowed. Churchill Downs' Paddock Grill will be open each morning with breakfast food and beverage options.
On Sunday, May 1 and Monday, May 2, fans can enjoy a premium breakfast in Millionaires Row or the Stakes Room for Dawn at the Downs. Tickets start at $41 and can be purchased on www.KentuckyDerby.com/tickets.
The 148th runnings of the $1.25 Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) and $3 million Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) will be held Friday, May 6 and Saturday, May 7, respectively. Opening Night of Derby Week and the 44-day Spring Meet is Saturday, April 30.
2022 Triple Crown quick links:
Mo Donegal romps in the 2022 Belmont Stakes - Saturday at Belmont, Mo Donegal drew away in the stretch to win the Belmont Stakes by 3 lengths over filly Nest and Skippylongstocking while Derby hero Rich Strike finished 6th. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Belmont Entries - With no Triple Crown on the line a small field of only 8 horses was entered this year with Peter Pan winner We the People the favorite at 2-1. Check out all the entries with full profiles and photos.
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 horse isn't one of the colts but the lone filly!
2022 Belmont Festival Friday Stakes Results - Friday at Belmont Park had 5 stakes races: the New York Stakes (G1) won by Bleecker Street, the True North (G2) won by Jackie's Warrior, the Belmont Gold Cup Invitational (G2) won by Loft, the Bed o'Roses Invitational (G2) won by Bella Sofia, and the Intercontinental Stakes (G3) won by Caravel. Get the results, charts, and photos here.
2022 Belmont Friday Workouts - Friday morning at Belmont Park, three of the Belmont Stakes horses were out on the main track. Check out photos and comments for We the People, Rich Strike, and Creative Minister.
Wonder Again (G2), Astoria, and Tremont Stakes - The Belmont Stakes Festival kicked off on Thursday with three stakes races, the Wonder Again Stakes (G2) won by Consumer Spending, the Astoria Stakes won by Devious Dame, and the Tremont Stakes won by Two of a Kind. Get the results, charts, and photos here.
Fillies in the Belmont - This year there will be a filly in the race, the 24th to try her luck against the boys and trained by Todd Pletcher who trained the last filly to win the Belmont Stakes. Check out the other 23 who tried and the 3 who won.
Early Voting burns up the Preakness (G1) - On an oppressively hot Saturday at Pimlico, Early Voting pressed the pace to win the 2022 Preakness Stakes (G1) by 1 1/4 lengths over favorite Epicenter and Creative Minister. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Black-Eyed Susan Day Results - Interstatedaydream pressed the pace and took the lead in the stretch to win the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) by 1 1/4 lengths at Pimlico on Friday while favorite Adare Manor finished 2nd. There were 5 other stakes on the card including the Pimlico Special (G3) won by First Captain, the Allaire Dupont Distaff (G3) won by Super Quick, and the Hilltop Stakes won by Pizza Bianca. Get the results, charts, and photos for all 6 races here.
Rich Strike shocks in the 2022 Kentucky Derby (G1) - Saturday at Churchill Downs, long shot Rich Strike who drew in from the also-eligibles rallied from far back to win the Kentucky Derby (G1) by 3/4 length over favorite Epicenter with Zandon third. He is the second highest paying Derby winner ever. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
Secret Oath wins the 2022 Kentucky Oaks (G1) - Secret Oath drew away in the muddy stretch to win the Kentucky Oaks (G1) by 2 lengths at Churchill Downs on Friday, giving trainer D. Wayne Lukas his 5th Oaks victory. Favorite Nest was second and long shot Desert Dawn was third. Get the results, chart, and photos here.
2022 Road to the Kentucky Derby - All the point earning races on the Triple Crown Trail leading up to the Kentucky Derby with results and winners updated as they are run.
2022 Triple Crown Late Nominations - UAE Derby runner-up Summer is Now headlines the list of seven late Triple Crown nominations made eligible by a $6000 fee by the March 28 deadline.
Early Triple Crown Nominations - 312 horses where nominated by the early deadline of January 29 for the 2022 Triple Crown. Trainer Todd Pletcher nominated the most with 42 followed by Brad Cox with 26. Check out all the horses and free past performances from Equibase.