California Night: He galloped 1 1/4 mile before the break with Katie Clawson aboard for trainer Mike Maker.
Determinant: He galloped Friday morning, will run in the Blue Grass rather than today’s Transylvania. He'll exit the far outside post.
Flameaway: He galloped just over a mile with Kim Carroll aboard for trainer Mark Casse. The race will mark the second Keeneland start for Flameaway, who won the Dixiana Bourbon in October.
“We’re going to have to hustle a little bit from our post (12),” Casse said. “He really doesn’t care about anything, so he doesn’t have to be on the lead. I just would like, turning for home, for him to be in the fight, because he’s our Rocky. He just gets the job done.”
Free Drop Billy, Tiz Mischief: Trainer Dale Romans was at Keeneland Friday morning to oversee them as each galloped 1 1/2 mile after the renovation break. The stable mates shipped to Keeneland Thursday from their Churchill Downs base.
“They trained super, they’re feeling good and they love this race track,” Romans said of the colts, who were each ridden by exercise rider Faustino Aguiler.
Tiz Mischief drew post 9 for the Toyota Blue Grass with Free Drop Billy just to his outside in the 10 spot.
Both colts won at Keeneland on Oct. 7. Free Drop Billy took the Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity four races after Tiz Mischief won a maiden race. Free Drop Billy is coming off a third-place finish in the Gotham at Aqueduct on March 10. Tiz Mischief comes to the Toyota Blue Grass after finishing fifth in the Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby on March 10.
“Free Drop Billy just has to be himself and he will be right there,” Romans said. “He’s won at all distances at all different tracks and he will run big this weekend. He’s a cool horse. He’s laid back and he takes care of business. In the last two weeks he has become very arrogant. He is starting to figure out he is the big man in the barn. When he goes to the track, he bounces and he might buck a little bit to let everyone know he is the boss.”
Romans attributed Free Drop Billy’s Gotham loss to interference he encountered in the race and said he expects Tiz Mischief to improve from his Tampa Bay Derby defeat.
Good Magic: On Friday about 9:15 a.m., Good Magic visited the Paddock and galloped on the main track for the second consecutive morning. Chad Brown, with two consecutive Eclipse Awards as outstanding trainer, was at Keeneland for the first time this season Friday morning.
“The horse looks great,” Brown said about the Curlin colt. “He’s very healthy, traveling really well over the track. We feel he’s a fitter, stronger horse the second start of the year, so we’re cautiously optimistic that he’ll run a really good race tomorrow.”
The $1 million Toyota Blue Grass will be the second race of the year for Good Magic, who was third in the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park. He drew post 11 in the 14-horse field for tomorrow’s 1 1/8-mile race.
“Not ideal, but it’s the luck of the draw,” Brown said about the post for the $1 million Keeneland September Yearling Sale purchase. “He’s a very talented horse; hopefully, he’ll overcome that and work out a good trip.”
Good Magic is among the 10 horses Brown has entered this weekend at Keeneland. His stakes action begins today with Analyze It making his 2018 debut in the Kentucky Utilities Transylvania Stakes.
“He’s done nothing wrong up to this point in his career,” Brown said about the 3-year-old Point of Entry colt, who won the Cecil B. DeMille at Del Mar in November. “He’s training really, really well. He has another challenging post (11). Hopefully, he can break cleanly from the post and secure a good forward position early.”
On Saturday, two races before the Toyota Blue Grass, Brown will send out multiple graded stakes winner Lewis Bay in the Madison. The 5-year-old Bernardini mare is coming off a runner-up finish in Gulfstream Park’s Royal Delta on Feb. 19.
“Really an evenly matched field,” Brown said. “There are some really talented fillies in the race. Several in there I could see on their best day winning – she’s one of them. Hopefully, she can work out a trip and run her best race.”
On Sunday, Brown will send out Rushing Fall in the Appalachian Presented by Japan Racing Association. The race marks the 2018 debut for the 3-year-old More Than Ready filly, who last won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf at Del Mar.
“She drew a really good post (2),” Brown said. “She’s coming along well. We’re excited to get her started this year.”
Gotta Go: He galloped 1 1/2 mile before the renovation break with exercise rider Carlos Deyan aboard for trainer Ian Wilkes.
Kanthaka: He galloped 1 1/2 mile before the break with Cecily Evans aboard for trainer Jerry Hollendorfer. Kanthaka is scheduled to school in the paddock with horses in Friday afternoon’s fifth race.
Machismo: He galloped 1 1/2 mile under jockey Jake Radosevich for trainer Anthony Quartarolo.
Marconi: Making his initial appearance on the track was Marconi, trrained by three-time Toyota Blue Grass winner Todd Pletcher. Marconi galloped 1 1/4 mile under Katherine Zwiesler after the break.
Quip: He'll be scratched in favor of the Arkansas Derby. This morning he breezed four furlongs in :48.60 before sunrise with trainer Rodolphe Brisset in the saddle.
“He worked great and galloped out really well,” WinStar General Manager David Hanley said.
Brisset said Quip is to depart Keeneland on a van this evening. Brisset is scheduled to fly to Arkansas this afternoon so he can unload the Distorted Humor colt when he arrives.
Sporting Chance: Also on the track for the first time was Sporting Chance, trained by two-time Toyota Blue Grass winner D. Wayne Lukas. He went through the Paddock, jogged a mile and loped a mile under exercise rider Allison Walker shortly after 6 a.m., according to Lukas, who is Keeneland’s all-time leader in victories with 293 and second all-time in stakes wins with 50.
Sporting Chance arrived at Keeneland Wednesday afternoon from Oaklawn Park, where he has made his two starts in 2018. Sporting Chance finished third in a muddy Southwest in his first start in five months and then was fifth in the Rebel on March 17. Lukas opted to run in the Toyota Blue Grass as opposed to waiting a week for the Arkansas Derby.
“There were many reasons,” Lukas said. “The timing here is better as it gives us four weeks to the next one (Kentucky Derby) instead of three, and we get Luis Saez, who was on him for his best races last year.”
Sporting Chance has worked twice since the Rebel.
“He has had a good three weeks,” Lukas said. “His last two works were his best of the year (:48.40 for a half-mile on April 2 and :59.20 for 5 furlongs on March 27). He did those on his own with no company.”
Listed at 10-1 on the morning line, Sporting Chance will break from post 2. “That’s a real good spot,” Lukas said.
Zing Zang: He galloped before the morning renovation break and visited the starting gate for trainer Steve Asmussen. Zing Zang is scheduled to school in the paddock with horses in the fifth race.
Track release edited by Dick Downey