04/30/2013 1:43PM

Kentucky Derby workouts: Itsmyluckyday gallops strongly


LOUISVILLE, Ky. – The major work has been done. All that remains for the trainers of the 20 prospective Kentucky Derby starters is to maintain their horses’ form over the next several days and hope fortune smiles down upon them during Wednesday’s post-position draw.

There were no recorded works or even blowouts over a fast track Tuesday morning at Churchill Downs, where the majority of the activity again took place during the special Derby/Oaks training period beginning at 8:30 a.m. The highlights of that session included strong gallops from two of the more recent arrivals to Louisville, Itsmyluckyday and Goldencents.

Eighteen of the 20 horses expected to be entered Wednesday morning for this year’s Derby are on the grounds. Lines of Battle was scheduled to arrive here very early Wednesday morning. Giant Finish was expected to leave the Fair Hill training center in Maryland by van Wednesday night and arrive here Thursday morning..

Tuesday at Churchill

54 degrees, sunny, fast

Itsmyluckyday continues to make a terrific impression. After jogging and galloping easily the previous two mornings, the Florida Derby runner-up picked up the pace and gave exercise rider Pete Shelton all he could handle during a very strong and impressive-looking gallop Tuesday while seemingly getting over the ground here very efficiently. Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. confirmed afterward that he will not give the Holy Bull winner a blowout prior to the Derby.

“He’s not going to be any fitter or run any better on Saturday if I blow him out before the race,” Plesa said. “There’s no upside to it. Only negative things can happen.”

[KENTUCKY DERBY WORKOUTS: Video analysis, news, and times]

Goldencents visited the starting gate, then galloped very aggressively, as most horses trained by Doug O’Neill will do in the morning. He was somewhat reminiscent of I’ll Have Another in the final days leading up to his victory in the 2012 Derby.

Goldencents went along at better than a two-minute clip from the five-furlong pole to the wire, covering his final three-eighths in 42 seconds and change despite drifting well out coming off the final bend. He galloped with his head cocked outward, which is not unusual, according to his connections.

Falling Sky continues to barrel around in the morning at better than a two-minute clip himself, picking up some heads on clockers’ row when flying past the finish line and into the clubhouse turn as he’s done on numerous occasions here over the past week. He looks like he’ll be a handful to keep off the lead Saturday.

Trainer Todd Pletcher sent out all five of his Derby runners to train after the break Tuesday, although Revolutionary, somewhat surprisingly, came out equipped with bell boots and merely jogged a mile while the others turned in regular, routine gallops. Overanalyze and Charming Kitten looked particularly good.

Black Onyx, a striking-looking individual, appeared to have come out of his final work last weekend in good order for trainer Kelly Breen while also turning in a routine-looking gallop Tuesday.

Vyjack, equipped in his now-familiar hackamore and with trainer/exercise rider Rudy Rodriguez wearing a helmet camera, also had an unspectacular session and is still expected to blow out for the race later in the week.

Stablemates Frac Daddy and Java’s War were on their toes Tuesday. Java’s War, who turned in a disappointing breeze here Saturday, was the more impressive of the duo Tuesday, with the very aggressive Frac Daddy perhaps a bit too rank, especially when attempting to pull up midway down the backstretch the second time around.