Midnight Bourbon Posts Swift Five-Furlong Breeze, Gives Connections A Scare When Briefly Loose In Barn Area

On a brisk Monday morning in Louisville, Winchell Thorougbreds’ multiple graded stakes-placed colt Midnight Bourbon continued his serious preparation for the $3 million Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (G1) with a swift five furlong move in :59.80, the fastest of 13 horses at the distance.

Trained by Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen, Midnight Bourbon worked in company with recent Turfway Park maiden winner Bajan Rum through fractions of :12.40, :24, :35.60. The TwinSpires.com Louisiana Derby (G2) runner-up galloped out six furlongs in 1:12.80 and completed seven furlongs in 1:26, according to Churchill Downs clocker John Nichols.

Midnight Bourbon then managed to give his connections a bit of a scare when he got away from his hotwalker near the barn area, and enjoyed a brief jaunt around the bathing area between barns. He was quickly apprehended by another hotwalker, and appeared to escape unharmed. The incident was captured on camera by WHAS11’s Kent Spencer.

Tuesday will be the first day on the track for Blue Grass (G2) runner-up Highly Motivated, who arrived at trainer Chad Brown’s Barn 25 at 8 a.m. (all times Eastern) from Keeneland. Brown is scheduled to be at Churchill Downs Tuesday.

BOURBONIC, DYNAMIC ONE, KNOWN AGENDA, SAINTHOOD – Two-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Todd Pletcher sent his four hopefuls for the Run for the Roses out for 1 3/8-mile gallops Monday morning.

Pletcher utilized the 7:30-7:45 training window for Derby and Kentucky Oaks candidates to send out St. Elias Stable’s Known Agenda with Hector Ramos aboard, Repole Stable, Phipps Stable and St. Elias Stable’s Dynamic One with Carlos Perez Quevedo aboard and WinStar Farm and CHC Inc.’s Sainthood with Amelia Green aboard.

Calumet Farm’s Bourbonic galloped after 9 o’clock with Ramos aboard.

Pletcher said Monday morning that no rider has been confirmed for Sainthood, who comes into Derby 147 off a runner-up finish in the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) at Turfway Park March 27.

CADDO RIVER, ESSENTIAL QUALITY, MANDALOUN – Godolphin’s Kentucky Derby favorite Essential Quality and Juddmonte Farm’s Mandaloun jogged at 6:20 a.m. Monday at Churchill Downs for trainer Brad Cox while stablemate Caddo River galloped at 5:15 a.m.

“(Essential Quality and Mandaloun) both came out of their Saturday works in good shape,” trainer Brad Cox said. “We’re gearing up. It’s getting exciting around the barn and we’re ready for the Derby.”

Shortleaf Stable’s Arkansas Derby (G1) runner-up Caddo River plans to run in the Kentucky Derby remain tentative.

HELIUM, SOUP AND SANDWICH – D J Stable’s Tampa Bay Derby (G2) winner Helium along with Live Oak Plantation’s Florida Derby (G1) Soup and Sandwich had a scheduled walk day at trainer Mark Casse’s Barn 36 at Churchill Downs.

“We had an easy day around the barn today,” Casse’s assistant David Carroll said.

Both horses are scheduled to work this weekend.

HIGHLY MOTIVATED – Klaravich Stables’ homebred Highly Motivated, runner-up in the Blue Grass Stakes (G2) in his most recent start April 3, arrived at Churchill Downs at 8 o’clock Monday morning from Keeneland.

The Chad Brown trainee had worked a half-mile in :47.20 Sunday morning that was the best of 27 at the distance.

KEEPMEINMIND – Spendthrift Farm, Cypress Creek and Arnold Bennewith’s Keepmeinmind jogged two miles early Monday morning under exercise rider Enrique Benitez for trainer Robertino Diodoro.

Winner of the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) here last fall, Keepmeinmind had worked five furlongs in 1:00.60 under Benitez at Keeneland on Saturday and arrived at Churchill Downs on Sunday.

He currently sits No. 22 on the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard.

KING FURY – Fern Circle Stables and Three Chimneys Farm’s King Fury galloped 1 ½ miles at 5:30 under exercise rider Danny Ramsey for trainer Kenny McPeek.

He needs one defection to make the field of 20 for the first Saturday in May.

MIDNIGHT BOURBON, SUPER STOCK – Winchell Thoroughbreds’ multiple graded stakes placed-colt Midnight Bourbon worked five furlongs in :59.80 in company with stablemate Bajan Rum (five furlongs, 1:00.80).

“We’re obviously very excited about who Midnight Bourbon is,” Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen said. “Physically, he’s an absolutely beautiful horse. Going over the track now, he’s as good as he’s ever been. He’s always had a big frame, now there’s just more of him in the right spots.”

Erv Woolsey and Keith Asmussen’s upset Arkansas Derby (G1) hero Super Stock had a scheduled walk day.

O BESOS – Barrett Bernard, Tagg Team Racing and West Point Thoroughbreds’ Louisiana Derby (G2) third-place finisher O Besos jogged about one mile under Margarito Fierro at 6:30 a.m. Monday at Churchill Downs.

O Besos is scheduled to work Wednesday.

STARRININMYDREAMS – Stewart Racing and WinStar Farm’s third-place Lexington Stakes (G3) finisher Starrininmydreams galloped about 1 ½ miles at 6:30 a.m. under exercise rider Emerson Chavez.

Starrininmydreams sits No. 23 on the Road to the Kentucky Derby leaderboard.

SHAPING UP: THE KENTUCKY DERBY – Likely starters in the 147th running of the $3 million Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve (Grade 1) for 3-year-olds at 1 1/4 miles on Saturday, May 1 in order of preference (with possible jockey and trainer): Essential Quality (Luis Saez, Brad Cox); Hot Rod Charlie (Flavien Prat, Doug O’Neill); Super Stock (Ricardo Santana Jr., Steve Asmussen); Like the King (Drayden Van Dyke, Wesley Ward); Known Agenda (Irad Ortiz, Todd Pletcher); Rock Your World (Joel Rosario, John Sadler); Bourbonic (Kendrick Carmouche, Todd Pletcher); Medina Spirit (John Velazquez, Bob Baffert); Midnight Bourbon (Mike Smith, Steve Asmussen); Mandaloun (Florent Geroux, Brad Cox); Highly Motivated (Javier Castellano, Chad Brown); Helium (Julien Leparoux, Mark Casse); Soup and Sandwich (Tyler Gaffalione, Mark Casse); Dynamic One (Jose Ortiz, Todd Pletcher); Sainthood (TBA, Todd Pletcher); Hidden Stash (Rafael Bejarano, Vicki Oliver); O Besos (Marcelino Pedroza, Greg Foley); Get Her Number (TBA, Peter Miller);

Possible starters within the Top 20 on the preference list: Caddo River (TBA, Brad Cox); Dream Shake (TBA, Peter Eurton)

Next up in order of preference: King Fury (Brian Hernandez Jr.); Keepmeinmind (David Cohen, Robertino Diodoro); Starrininmydreams (TBA, Dallas Stewart).

The post Midnight Bourbon Posts Swift Five-Furlong Breeze, Gives Connections A Scare When Briefly Loose In Barn Area appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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