LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- A sloppy track on Kentucky Derby day should prove no problem for Nehro after the Arkansas Derby and Louisiana Derby runner-up splashed five furlongs in 1:02.81 over a very wet track Monday morning at Churchill Downs.
Working under the lights and with rain falling at a steady clip at 6:30 a.m., Nehro posted splits of 13.11, 25.74 and 37.96, going easily through the opening three furlongs before completing his final quarter in 24.85 while having to squeeze inside a pair of gallopers approaching the wire. Nehro galloped out six furlongs in 1:17.02 then continued on very willingly around the clubhouse turn to pull up seven-eighths in 1:31.99. Nehro had his head cocked toward the infield as he came down the stretch and was under mild urging to get past the traffic nearing the finish line.
Thirty minutes earlier, with the rain pelting down even heavier and bolts of lightning lighting up the early morning sky, reigning 2-year-old champion Uncle Mo put in a very energetic 1 1/2-mile gallop for trainer Todd Pletcher. Uncle Mo was full of himself as he was released by Pletcher assistant Michael McCarthy from the pony just inside the sixteenth pole and eagerly galloped once around before pulling up near the five-furlong marker while appearing to jump puddles a couple of times along the way.
Uncle Mo is scheduled to work five furlongs in company with his graded-stakes-winning stablemate Calibrachoa on Tuesday.