John Oxley’s Tampa Bay Derby (Grade II) winner Prospective, a major contender for the 138th running of the $2 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI), breezed five furlongs on a fast track at Churchill Downs on Monday morning in 1:01.20 and will have his final prep for the Derby in the $750,000 Blue Grass at Keeneland on April 14.
“We are going to run Prospective in the Blue Grass rather than the Wood (Memorial) so he can run out of his own stall,” said Norman Casse, assistant trainer to his father, Mark. “He’ll ship from Churchill the morning of the race. It worked out well for him when he shipped from Palm Meadows to Tampa (Bay Downs) the morning of the Tampa Bay Derby.”
With regular exercise rider Melanie Giddings in the irons, Prospective came on the track shortly after the renovation break at 8:30 a.m. ET. Working with another Mark Casse-trained 3-year-old, Prospective recorded fractions of :14.60, :27.20 and :39.40. The dark bay son of Malibu Moon sprinted down the Churchill Downs stretch and completed the final quarter mile of the work in :21.80.
“We were looking to go about 1:01 and that’s what he did,” Casse said. “I’m a little disappointed with how slow they went for the first eighth of a mile, but they finished up strongly and Prospective galloped out very nice. He continues to show how much he likes this racetrack.”
Purchased at the 2010 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga Select Yearling Sale for $250,000, Prospective has compiled a record of 4-2-0 from seven lifetime starts. His career earnings of $441,317 includes $365,452 in graded stakes earnings, placing him 12th on the current graded stakes earnings list. That list will likely determine the maximum 20 participants for the Kentucky Derby to be run at Churchill Downs on May 5.
Casse confirmed that Prospective will have his final work in preparation for the Blue Grass at Churchill Downs on April 8.
In other Kentucky Derby 138 news, JEOG Racing LLC’s homebred Scatman arrived at Trackside Training Center in Louisville at 4:30 a.m. Monday from Oaklawn Park for trainer Mike Lauer. No definite plans have been made for a next start for Scatman, who most recently finished third behind Secret Circle in the Rebel (GII) at Oaklawn on March 17 and was previously second to that rival in the second division of the Southwest (GIII) over the same track on Feb. 20.
“He’ll ship over to my barn at Churchill Downs today or tomorrow (Tuesday) and have a work this Friday or Saturday,” Lauer said. “We’ll make a decision about where to go after the work.”
Lauer noted that the Blue Grass is one of the races currently under consideration.
A bay Kentucky-bred son of Scat Daddy, Scatman has a record of 2-2-1 from six lifetime starts and earnings of $160,566.
Churchill Downs, the world’s most legendary racetrack, has conducted Thoroughbred racing and presented America’s greatest race, the Kentucky Derby, continuously since 1875. Located in Louisville, the flagship racetrack of Churchill Downs Incorporated (NASDAQ: CHDN) also operates Trackside at Churchill Downs, which offers year-round simulcast wagering at the historic track. Churchill Downs will conduct the 138th running of the Kentucky Derby on May 5, 2012, and its Spring Meet is scheduled for April 28-July 1. The track has hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Championships a record eight times. Information about Churchill Downs can be found on the Internet at www.churchilldowns.com.
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