Monday Morning's Daily Derby Update

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11:06 am EDT

Todd Pletcher's ABRAHAM hasn't missed a beat after shipping from PMM; on Sunday he breezed five in 1:01.80 (15/30) at CD. Maybe the Derby Trial next for Abraham? The Peter Pan? Preakness?

Al Stall's DEPARTING, who was said by Churchill Downs on Sunday to be out of consideration for the Kentucky Derby, breezed four in :47.00 (1/43) at CD. No word yet on his next start. Last time out, he finished third in the Louisiana Derby.

Todd Pletcher's FORTY TALES, probable for the Coolmore Lexington, Sunday breezed four in :51.20 (34/43) at CD. It would be his first two-turn start.

Mike Stidham's up-and-coming GROUND TRANSPORT Sunday worked four in :47.40 (1/53) at KEE, his first since he was fifth in the Louisiana Derby.

Chad Brown's NOBLE TUNE Sunday continued breezing toward the American Turf, five in 1:01.60 (10/25) at KEE.


Mike Smith is confirmed to ride PALACE MALICE in the Derby. He was on War Academy in the Arkansas Derby and eased him. Garrett Gomez was on Palace Malice while finishing second in the Blue Grass.

Rumor has it that Calvin Borel will ride Revolutionary in the Derby. Javier Castellano took a pass on Revolutionary to accept the mount on Normandy Invasion.


Somehow we missed this earlier, but according to, Mike Battaglia said over the weekend that Verrazano will be the Derby morning line favorite, followed by Orb and Goldencents.

VYJACK reported Sunday that VYJACK exited the Wood Memorial with a lung infection and has been having regular treatments in a hyperbaric chamber at Fair Hill Training Center. The story attributes the information to Bruce Jackson, who operates the rehab facility. At first, it was said by owner David Wilkenfeld that Vyjack had bled a "2 on a scale of 5," but, according to the story at, it turned out to be mucus and a slight lung infection. Vyjack was vanned to Fair Hill by trainer Rudy Rodriguez, where he had received his early training by Jackson.

"The lung infection has completely cleared, and being here at Fair Hill and taking it easy for a little while has done him a world of good," Jackson said. Jackson added he did not know how long it will be before Vyjack is taken to Churchill Downs. The original plan was to ship Vyjack to Kentucky on April 14, but the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has not issued Rodriguez a license. He must attend a hearing before the Licensing Review Committee set to take place on Tuesday. Rodriguez recently served a 20-day suspension in New York for a medication infraction.