By Dick Downey
Updated 9:58 a.m., 10:32 a.m. and 1:36 p.m. ET
Monday at Belmont Park, Orb breezed four furlongs in :47.18 for Saturday's Preakness Stakes, while four colts put in moves at Churchill Downs.
The workout was fifth fastest of 96 at the distance.
Orb, going solo, galloped out five furlongs in 59.60 and six in 1:13.00. Exercise rider Jenn Patterson was up as usual.
"I thought it was freaky. It didn't look like he got out of a high gallop. That's what good horses do," said trainer Shug McGaughey.
"It sent cold chills up my back," McGaughey told reporters on the scene. "He wouldn't have blown out a match. He wasn't frazzled. Right now, I'm on cloud nine. The way he was striding today, the way he held his leads through the lane. I thought it was spectacular."
Link: Video of Orb's Workout
Link: Post-Work Interview with Shug McGaughey
Orb departs for Pimlico via van at 10:00 a.m. ET. He's expected to walk on Tuesday and go to the track on Wednesday.
“I don’t know whether they’ve got a special time like they did at the Derby or not; if they do, he’ll go out at that time,” said McGaughey. “If not we’ll try to to get him out early like we do here, just because I like to leave him out of the stall as long as I can, as you’ve seen, so then we can get him in and get him done up and let him have a little bit of kind of relax time on his own before we feed him. But I’ll just sort of wait and see when we get down there. But he’ll ship today, all things being equal, get there we’ll give him an off day tomorrow, just walk him, and we just kind of gotta hold what we got.”
And what about the competition on Saturday?
“I think it’s formidable,” said McGaughey of the prospective field. “I know that Oxbow made a good run in the Derby. I never really kind of sat down and watched it and pinned it down. The other (Lukas) horse got in some trouble. You’ve got to respect Departing coming in there off his race in the Illinois Derby and being relatively fresh. My main concern is just trying to get Orb over there the best way we possibly can, and if he runs his race I think they’ll know he’s in there.”
At Churchill Downs, Mylute breezed four furlongs in :49.60 (20/40) for trainer Tom Amoss, with splits of :12.80 and :24.80. He galloped out five furlongs in 1:04.40.
Wayne Lukas sent out Will Take Charge and Oxbow.
Will Take Charge breezed four furlongs in :48.20 (6/40) with splits of :12.60, :24.20 and :36.00.
Oxbow breezed solo with Gary Stevens up, four furlongs in 49.80 (22/40). His splits were :12.60, :24.60 and :37.60; he galloped out five furlongs in 1:03.60.
Govenor Charlie breezed in company with Fed Biz, going six furlongs in 1:10.80 (1/4), working to the 7/8 pole. He recorded fractions of :11.80, :23.80, :35.00 and :58.20, and he galloped out seven furlongs in 1:24.80.