03/15/2010 12:00AM

Lentenor uncertain for Florida Derby


Trainer Michael Matz remains on the fence regarding Lentenor's status for Saturday's Grade 1 Florida Derby, although he said he was pleased with the way Barbaro's younger brother worked on Monday morning over the main track at Palm Meadows.

Matz had jockey Alan Garcia break Lentenor off several lengths behind a trio of stablemates. Lentenor circled and ran by his three workmates to complete five furlongs in 1:00, covering his final quarter in 24.00 seconds before galloping out six furlongs in 1:13. The drill was the fastest of 36 at the distance on Monday's tab.

"I was very pleased and Alan really liked him as well," Matz said. "I put him behind three horses, he went around them, and took the dirt well."

Matz is torn between running Lentenor in the Florida Derby or waiting two weeks for the Grade 1 Wood at Aqueduct. Lentenor has run four times but never over dirt. He won a maiden special weight race by 3 1/2 lengths over the grass here on Jan. 20 before finishing second, beaten a half-length, over the same course against first-level allowance company four weeks later. Lentenor has no graded stakes earnings to qualify for a spot in the Kentucky Derby.

"To get him into the Derby he's got to run first or second in his next start or it's a moot point," said Matz. "I'll probably just wait up until entry time on Wednesday, see who's going into the race, and make a decision then."

Tiz the One may get stakes shot

Tiz the One is another late-developing 3-year-old who could wind up getting one shot to earn a starting berth in the Kentucky Derby. Tiz the One, a son of Tiznow trained by Chad Brown for owners Gary and Mary West, won impressively for the second time in as many starts when he scored a 1 1/2-length victory in an entry-level allowance going a mile here Sunday. The performance earned him a 101 Beyer Speed Figure.

"I never expected he'd get that kind of number," said Brown, a former assistant to Bobby Frankel. "I was just grateful the race went and I was able to get some more fitness into him. I was around a lot of really good horses when I worked for Bobby and I think he's as talented as some of those good ones."

Brown said he would get together with stable manager Ben Glass, who picked Tiz the One out for the Wests at the Keeneland 2008 September sales, to decide what path to follow next with Tiz the One.

"We'll probably go to a stakes somewhere," said Brown. "He's still a lot less seasoned than most of the horses on the Derby trail so we'll see what happens. We could always take the back door and point for a race like the Withers and then maybe look at something later in the Triple Crown."