Trainer Neil Howard commented Friday on MACHEN (Distorted Humor) and WILKINSON (Lemon Drop Kid), his duo bound for the March 26 Louisiana Derby (G2).

Machen, fourth in the Risen Star S. (G2) in his stakes debut, drilled five furlongs in a bullet :59 3/5 at Fair Grounds Tuesday.

"He did it on his own," Howard said. "There was another horse with him -- an older horse -- but we didn't ask (Machen) to do any more than he wanted to do."

Wilkinson, last seen landing the Lecomte S. (G3), worked the same distance in 1:00 3/5 Monday.

"Both horses are doing fine," Howard added. "Both of them will work again on Monday. It won't be anything serious -- just a half and then galloping out down the backside."

Edgar Prado will pick up the Louisiana Derby mount aboard Machen, while Garrett Gomez jets in to renew his partnership with Wilkinson.

In other Louisiana Derby news, trainer Al Stall Jr. is looking forward to saddling his unbeaten LEFT (Arch) in his stakes debut.

"Left has done everything right since he's been here," said Stall, speaking of the gelding who broke his maiden at first asking over the Stall-Wilson turf course January 29 and came back to be clearly best once again in first-level allowance company on the main track February 26.

"He's made it to the front in both of his races but once he gets there he gets a little lost and starts waiting on horses. He'll get over that. They all do.

"The reason we ran Left in that grass race first time out was that he needed a race, but we were looking for a dirt sprint for (highly-regarded) Bind (Pulpit), and Left was the odd-man out."

Bind, an impressive 9 1/2-length maiden winner going six furlongs on February 19, is not on the Kentucky Derby trail.