LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Several prospects for the Coolmore Lexington Stakes had their final pre-race workouts Saturday, including Distorted Dave, a John Sadler-trained colt who figures as one of the top contenders for the Grade 2 race.
The $300,000 Lexington will be run Saturday at Keeneland as the unofficial last stop before the May 1 Kentucky Derby. With a $180,000 winner's share, the 1 1/16-mile Polytrack race usually allows the winner entry into the Derby, if so desired, although that number might be cutting it a bit close this year, when a surplus of horses is trying to make the 20-horse gate based on the customary graded-earnings criteria.
Distorted Dave went six furlongs over the Pro-Ride surface at Santa Anita in 1:13.40, handily, Saturday morning. The Distorted Humor colt was a 4 1/4-length winner of an entry-level allowance at Santa Anita in his last start March 26.
Two other Lexington prospects breezed Saturday, both at Keeneland, with Chief Counsel going a half-mile in 46.80 seconds and Fearless Cowboy getting five furlongs in 1:02.80.
On Friday morning, Uptown-charlybrown breezed five furlongs in 1:00.60 over a fast dirt surface at his hometown track, Tampa Bay Downs.
Besides that quartet, Keeneland officials are looking for another four or so starters, including Connemara, Game on Dude, Kettle River, and Workin for Hops.
Informed Decision to Humana Distaff
Informed Decision, a disappointing third here Thursday in her 5-year-old debut in the Grade 1 Vinery Madison, came out of the race in good shape and will run next in the Grade 1 Humana Distaff on the May 1 Derby undercard.
"We sure hope she'll move forward from the race," trainer Jonathan Sheppard said.
Karelian likely waiting for Saratoga
Karelian, the 8-year-old gelding who defeated Court Vision in capturing the Grade 1 Maker's Mark Mile here Friday, will bypass the logical next race, the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic on the Derby undercard, and probably won't race again until Saratoga, which starts in late July.
The 1 1/8-mile Woodford Reserve "comes up a little too quick," said trainer Rusty Arnold. "He likes a couple months between races, and I don't want to run him 1 1/8 miles anymore."
Meanwhile, Rahystrada, a sharp winner of a classified turf allowance on the Friday undercard, was not nominated to the Woodford Reserve by the february deadline, although trainer Byron Hughes said the race hasn't been completely ruled out and it is possible Rahystrada could be supplemented.