By Dick Downey
Updated 9:49 a.m. ET
Updated 10:09 a.m. ET
Code West breezed Wednesday morning at Churchill Downs, with a decision on his Belmont Stakes status hanging in the balance.
Going in company with Power Broker, Code West worked in 1:00.60 (6/17). According to Churchill Downs clockers, Code West's internal fractions were :12.40, :24.80 and :36.80, and he galloped out six furlongs in 1:14.80. Power Broker continued his work an extra eighth-mile, six furlongs timed in 1:13.20 (3/3).
Last week, Bob Baffert lined up Rosie Napravnik to ride Code West in the Belmont Stakes, but the trainer said pretty much in the same breath that he hadn't decided yet whether Code West would run. Baffert said he'd monitor how Code West is coming along -- and what competition lines up.
Bafferrt is now in better position to make a decision -- but he'll have to see how the Gary and Mary West colt comes out of Wednesday's work. There is probably still time to breeze Code West again should conditions be right.
Code West, a son of Lemon Drop Kid, was last seen winning a 1 1/16-mile allowance race for 3-year-olds and up at Pimlico, the final race on the Preakness day card. He prevailed by 6 3/4 lengths under Napravnik. On Kentucky Derby day, Code West lost by a neck to Bellarmine after encountering traffic trouble. Earlier this year, he was sixth in the Grade II Louisiana Derby after losing the Grade II Risen Star by a nose to the late-running longshot Ive Struck a Nerve.
Power Broker, an allowance winner at Churchill last time out after running fifth in the Grade I Santa Anita Derby, is nominated to the first annual Penn Mile this Saturday.
The Penn Mile is on turf, a surace Baffert has indicated might be on the horizon for the son of Pulpit. Entries are taken at Penn National Wednesday. Power Broker's most recent breeze before Wednesday was on May 21 when he went four furongs on turf rated good in :51.80 (3/4) at Churchill Downs.