Uncle Mo still on the fence for Derby

It was a relatively uneventful morning for the Repole Stable duo of UNCLE MO (Indian Charlie) and STAY THIRSTY (Bernardini), who went trackside at 8:30 a.m. (EDT) during the special Derby/Oaks training period and galloped 1 3/8 miles under their regular exercise riders -- Hector Ramos on Uncle Mo and Fernando Espinoza on Stay Thirsty.

But outward appearances can be deceiving and behind the scenes at trainer Todd Pletcher's Barn 34 the wheels were turning and churning on a scenario that might rob Derby 137 of its "name" horse.

Kentucky Derby 137 Barn Notes

ANIMAL KINGDOM – Team Valor International’s Animal Kingdom stood in the starting gate and galloped a mile and three quarters Thursday morning over a fast track at Churchill Downs.
       “It was pretty uneventful,” trainer Graham Motion said with a smile.
       Animal Kingdom was scheduled to school in the paddock Thursday afternoon during the fifth race.

Chicago man selected to place Derby Dream Bet

A Chicago man has won the chance to place a life-changing $100,000 win bet in Saturday's 137th running of the Kentucky Derby (G1) at Churchill Downs.

Dave Flores, who lives in the Southside of Chicago, was randomly drawn to place the free wager in conjunction with the $100,000 Derby Dream Bet Sweepstakes, which was offered for the second consecutive year thanks to a partnership between Churchill Downs and NBC Sports. A year ago, Glen Fullerton of Houston won $900,000 when Super Saver won the Kentucky Derby at odds of 8-1.

Barn Notes: Wednesday May 4 - Zazu Says 'Hello'

BOUQUET BOOTH/STREET STORM – Right Time Racing’s Kentucky Oaks duo of Bouquet Booth and Street Storm galloped a mile and a half after the morning renovation break on a chilly Wednesday morning at Churchill Downs over a fast track.

Alex Castanon was aboard Bouquet Booth and Williams Cano was on Street Storm, longshot chances in the Oaks with morning line odds of 20-1 and 50-1, respectively.

Barn Notes: Wednesday May 4 - Comma to the Top to the track

ANIMAL KINGDOM/TOBY’S CORNER – Team Valor International’s Animal Kingdom galloped a mile and a half shortly after 7 a.m.

Court Vision Heads Woodford Reserve on Glittering Derby Day Stakes Card

IEAH Stables and Resolute Group Stables’ Grade I stakes winner Court Vision hopes that the third time is the charm on Saturday when he faces 13 rivals in the 25th running of the $500,000 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (GI), the 1 1/8-mile turf test that traditionally is run immediately prior to the $2 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum!

Dialed In Made The 4-1 Favorite

(Full field post positions and morning-line odds are located at the bottom).

Robert LaPenta’s Dialed In, the winner of three of four career starts including the $1 million Florida Derby (GI) in his most recent start, was made the 4-1 morning line favorite Wednesday night for Saturday’s 137th running of the $2,196,800 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I) at historic Churchill Downs. 

Albarado injured, but still expected to ride in Derby

Robby Albarado was injured on Wednesday when he was thrown during the post parade for the 3RD race at Churchill Downs. However, the jockey is still expected to take the mount on Kentucky Derby (G1) contender Animal Kingdom (Leroidesanimaux [Brz]) during Saturday's Run for the Roses.

Albarado was aboard Smoke'n Al (Albert the Great), who threw his rider as the horses were coming onto the track for the post parade of the 3RD race. It was reported that the horse may have stepped on Albarado's face.

Churchill Downs earns re-accreditation from Alliance

The National Thoroughbred Racing Association (NTRA) announced Wednesday that Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky, has earned re-accreditation from the NTRA Safety and Integrity Alliance. The re-accreditation followed a complete review of all racing operations at the facility. Churchill Downs received its initial Alliance accreditation in April 2009. All accreditations and re-accreditations carry an effective period of two years.

Jockey calendar showcases riders in a different way

Photographer Barbara Livingston is used to taking shots of jockeys in action, but for the 2012 Thoroughbred Jockey Calendar the Eclipse Award winner focused on something else entirely: the conditioned and fit physique of those in charge of piloting their equine co-stars.

In an attempt to offer up a different side of horse racing, 12 top jockeys stepped up to the challenge of turning model for a day.