04/29/2012 11:41AM

Kentucky Derby 2012: Bodemeister looks just as good as Union Rags did a day earlier

Barbara D. Livingston
Bodemeister (left) begins to close ground on stablemate Jemima's Pearl, a Kentucky Oaks contender, during Sunday's workout at Churchill Downs.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – One day after Union Rags turned in a sharp workout at Churchill Downs, the other potential favorite for the 138th Kentucky Derby next Saturday, Bodemeister, threw down the gauntlet with a brilliant piece of work over a muddy surface.

Bodemeister worked five furlongs in 59.48 seconds, according to Daily Racing Form, then continued boldly on the gallop out for another three furlongs and completed one lap around the track in 1:40.26. The track was rated muddy, after a fierce storm Saturday night, but it had a very firm bottom.

Jockey Martin Garcia was aboard for the drill, but Mike Smith has the mount in the Derby.

Bodemeister will be coming back on three weeks’ rest following his dominating victory in the Arkansas Derby, but his trainer, Bob Baffert, said he has not “seen any regression.”

“So far, so good,” Baffert said.

Baffert said Bodemeister worked similarly to last week, “but I shut him down earlier last week.”

“I let him do a little more today,” Baffert said.

Bodemeister was one of two Derby aspirants to work here on Sunday. The other was Optimizer, who was timed in 1:00.47 for five furlongs with jockey Jon Court. As of Sunday, Optimizer was on the bubble for the Derby, essentially 21st on the earnings list for a race in which 20 runners is the maximum.

The California contingent of Creative Cause, I’ll Have Another, and Rousing Sermon had their first morning on the local track after arriving here Saturday. Creative Cause had his training session delayed in order to have his right hind shoe re-shod. It came off during the flight on Saturday, trainer Mike Harrington said.

“It came clean off,” Harrington said. “We had to put binding material on.”

Farriers Zane Baze and Steve Norman did the work.

Once shod, Creative Cause jogged seven furlongs, then galloped 1 1/4 miles, under John Cisneros, a former jockey who is Harrington’s assistant trainer.

Harrington said Creative Cause likely would have his final Derby workout on Monday. He originally had scheduled it for Tuesday, but, as of Sunday, Harrington thought the weather for Monday looked more hospitable.

Daddy Nose Best, Liaison, Mark Valeski, Sabercat, and Trinniberg are also scheduled to work here on Monday.

Done Talking, the Illinois Derby winner, was scheduled to arrive here Sunday afternoon following a van ride from Laurel, where he had his final Derby work on Saturday.

At Palm Meadows in Florida, Todd Pletcher’s duo of El Padrino and Gemologist both went a half-mile on Sunday, with Gemologist going in 50.49 seconds, and El Padrino in a pokey 53.34 seconds, over a track rated muddy.

And at Monmouth Park on Sunday, My Adonis, who is also on the outside looking in and is behind Optimizer on the graded earnings list, worked five furlongs in 1:01.60 on a track rated fast.

-- additional reporting by David Grening and Mike Welsch