07/27/2009 12:00AM

Mine That Bird breezes at Mountaineer


Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird had his final workout for the $750,000 West Virginia Derby when breezing a half-mile Monday in 49.80 seconds over the Mountaineer Park surface in Chester, W.Va.

Trainer Chip Woolley told Mountaineer officials afterward that Mine That Bird "was really sharp."

"We got just about exactly what we wanted out of him," he said.

The gelding stepped onto the racetrack shortly before 7 a.m. before proceeding through the uneventful work under John Perez, a jockey at Mountaineer. Perez told track officials that Mine That Bird "bounced right over the top of the track."

Entries for the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby, a 1 1/8-mile race to be run Saturday, were to be drawn Tuesday. Live television coverage of the race will be provided by Fox Sports Net from 5-6 p.m. Eastern, with Chris Lincoln, Kurt Hoover, and Caton Bredar handling the commentary.

The Monday workout was the fifth for Mine That Bird since he finished third as the favorite in his last race, the June 6 Belmont Stakes. He was shipped from Churchill Downs to Mountaineer on Friday.

Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will ride Mine That Bird in the West Virginia Derby and in the $1 million Shadwell Travers Stakes on Aug. 29 at Saratoga.

Mine That Bird won the 135th Kentucky Derby on May 2 before running second in the May 16 Preakness and third in the Belmont.