Entries Close Wednesday
By Dick Downey
All his hard work for the Xpressbet.com Florida Derby is done after Code of Honor breezed a half-mile in 48.40 on Monday at Payson Park.
“He looked like he worked very well. I asked him for 49 and he worked 48 and 2 or so, so I think we’re in pretty good shape,” trainer Shug McGaughey said.
Exercise rider Haladio Moreno was aboard for the breeze, the second for the son of Noble Mission since capturing the Xpressbet.com Fountain of Youth Stakes on March 2.
“He looks good, and I think he’s been training very well. I think all systems are go with him right now,” McGaughey said. “He’s had a good winter since the first of January, and I think he‘s looking forward to what he does. I like what I saw physically today and in terms of how he worked.”
John Velazquez, who was on board Sunland Derby winner Cutting Humor yesterday, has the return mount aboard the W. S. Farish homebred.
Code of Honor tops a field that is expected to include:
--Bourbon War, who closed with a rush in the Fountain of Youth;
--Hidden Scroll, who set a rapid pressured early pace in the Fountain of Youth before finishing fourth as the 6-5 favorite;
--Harvey Wallbanger, who wlon Holy Bull Stakes on Feb. 2 at Gulfstream as a 29-1 longshot.
Others expected to enter or who are possible:
--Undefeated Maximum Security;
--FTBOA Florida Sire Stakes winner Garter and Tie;
--Union’s Destiny, sixth in the Fountain of Youth,
--Overdeliver and Come on Gerry.
The post position draw for the 68th running of the Florida Derby will take place in Ten Palms Restaurant at Gulfstream Park at noon on Wednesday.