G M B Racing’s Tom’s Ready continued preparation for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I) with a five-furlong breeze in 1:01.60 and galloping out three-quarters of a mile in 1:15.40 over a fast track Thursday morning at Churchill Downs.
This was the Pennsylvania-bred son of More Than Ready’s second work since a runner-up effort behind Gun Runner in the March 26 Louisiana Derby (GII) where he was beaten by 4 ½ lengths.
Tom's Ready worked over a fast track in company with his Stewart-trained stablemate Lemon Drop Title, with the Kentucky Derby hope starting about six lengths behind his workmate. Churchill Downs clockers caught Tom's Ready in fractional times of :12.60, :25, :37.40 and :49.40. He finished on even terms with the 4-year-old Lemon Drop Title and galloped out five furlongs in :1:15.40. Lemon Drop Title completed his five-furlong work in 1:02.80.
“It was a great work,” trainer Dallas Stewart said. “It was a nice, even, strong maintenance work, and he finished the last quarter without any urging. I’m really happy with the way he worked and the way he handled the track.”
Tom’s Ready has made three starts this year all of which took place at Fair Grounds where Stewart is based in the winter. Aside from a second in the Louisiana Derby, he was a well-beaten seventh in the Risen Star (GII) on Feb. 20 and finished second in the Lecomte (GIII) behind stablemate Mo Tom, also owned by G M B Racing.
“We’re proud of the way he handled things this winter,” said Stewart, who plans to breeze his 3-year-old again next Thursday or Friday. “He had three good races down in New Orleans and he came out of them good and he looks to be healthy knock on wood. We don’t take anything for granted. We liked him as a 2-year-old, but it’s a big step to where we’re headed.”
In other Kentucky Derby news, Japanese invader Lani galloped six furlongs on the main track Thursday morning. “He is getting used to the new surroundings very well,” said Keita Tanaka, the agent for owner Koji Maeda (note: his wife Yoko has been listed as the owner but the colt will run under Koji’s name in the Derby). “For the first few days things were a little crazy, but he’s doing everything okay. All of the people here are treating us really well, which makes me happy.”
Tanaka said the son of Tapit would breeze Wednesday and that trainer Mikio Matsunaga would arrive Monday to oversee the UAE Derby (Group II) winner’s Kentucky Derby final preparations.
Elsewhere, Winchell Racing LLC’s Gun Runner schooled at the starting gate Thursday and galloped a mile following the renovation break.
G M B Racing’s Mo Tom, who breezed a half mile on Wednesday, will likely breeze again next Thursday, weather permitting, according to trainer Tom Amoss.
The Dale Romans-trained duo of Brody’s Cause and Cherry Wine also were out for exercise Thursday morning.
Kentucky Derby hopefuls based at Churchill Downs: Gun Runner (trained by Steve Asmussen, Barn 38), Brody’s Cause (Romans, Barn 4), Lani (Matsunaga, Barn 17), Tom’s Ready (Stewart, Barn 48), Mo Tom (Amoss, Barn 29), Fellowship (Mark Casse, Barn 36) and Cherry Wine (Romans, Barn 4). Oscar Nominated is stabled with trainer Mike Maker at the Trackside Training Center in Barn K.
Mohaymen is scheduled to arrive at Churchill Downs on Sunday around 10 a.m., according to Churchill Downs’ stall manager Steve Hargrave. Arkansas Derby participants could arrive Monday. Chad Brown’s duo of Shagaf and My Man Sam are scheduled for arrival on Tuesday.
Trainer Bob Baffert plans to send Mor Spirit to Churchill Downs on Friday, April 22, while Todd Pletcher is scheduled to send his charges to Louisville on Monday, April 25.