If the 2012 Kentucky Derby turns out to be a wet one, the connections of Bodemeister have to feel pretty good about the chances of their colt running a big race in the slop. Working over a muddy main track at Churchill Downs on Sunday morning, the Arkansas Derby winner zipped five furlongs in 59.48 seconds, the second fastest of 10 horses to work that distance. The Daily Racing Form describes Bodemeister’s work:
"Bodemeister worked five furlongs in 59.48 seconds … then continued boldly on the gallop out for another three furlongs and completed one lap around the track in 1:40.26. The track was rated muddy, after a fierce storm Saturday night, but it had a very firm bottom."
Speaking to the Blood-Horse, trainer Bob Baffert noted that he was pleased with the work of his top Derby contender:
“I’m glad I got the work in, I was a bit leery last night with all the rain and afraid about how the track would be. It turned out the track was in perfect shape. He got a hold of it; it was nice and firm. I was glad I didn’t work him yesterday when the track was dry and loose; I worry about stuff like that.”
Bodemeister is a son of Empire Maker, winner of the 2003 Belmont Stakes over a sloppy track in a race that denied Funny Cide the Triple Crown.
Other Kentucky Derby contenders to work Sunday morning:
- Optimizer, trained by Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas, breezed five furlongs at Churchill Downs, covering the distance in 1:00.40, fourth fastest of 10.
- Wood Memorial winner Gemologist breezed four furlongs in 50.39 over a muddy track at the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida. El Padrino worked the same distance at the training center in 53.34.