By Dick Downey
Updated 12:40 p.m. ET re: Code West
Kentucky Derby runner-up Golden Soul, Preakness winner Oxbow and Will Take Charge, an also-ran in both races, put in final breezes for the Belmont Stakes Thursday morning at Churchill Downs. Plans for other runners firmed up as well.
Golden Soul worked for the first time since the May 4 Derby after having some problems bouncing back from the race and regaining his appetite. Sent out by trainer Dallas Stewart, Golden Soul breezed five furlongs in 1:00.40 (3/13). Churchill Downs clockers recorded splits of :12.20, ;24.60, :36.80 and :48.60. He galloped out six furlongs in 1:13.20 and seven furlongs in 1:28.00.
Video: Golden Soul Down Stretch in Workout
Oxbow breezed six furlongs in 1:14.60 (1/2) for D. Wayne Lukas. His splits were :24.20, :35.80, :47.60 and 1:00.60. He galloped out seven furlongs in 1:29.40.
Lukas saw Will Take Charge breeze six furlongs in 1:15.80 (2/2). His initial fractions were :12.80, :24.60, :37.40 and :50.40, and he galloped out seven furlongs in 1:30.60. Both Lukas horses broke off for their works from the 5 1/2 furlong pole.
Titletown Five, who also ran in the Preakness for Lukas, was also on today's worktab at Churchill. He breezed four furlongs in :49.80 (16/36). The next-race plan for Titletown Five hasn't been disclosed.
Oxbow and Will Take Charge will be vanned to New York on Monday. Golden Soul is scheduled to be flown to New York on Tuesday.
In New York, Incognito has been confirmed for the Belmont Stakes. Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, Irad Ortiz Jr has been named to ride Incognito.
The son of A.P. Indy finished fifth, beaten 15 3/4 lengths by Belmont contender Freedom Child, on a sloppy track in the Grade II Peter Pan last time out.
Incognito breezed four furlongs in :50.01 (66/89) at Belmont Park on Monday.
McLaughlin has repeatedly said that Incognito wants the 1 1/2-mile Belmont distance, and that there won't be that many chances for him to run that long.
Today at Belmont Park, Shug McGaughey said that Orb is probable for the Belmont Stakes. Whether that status will be upgraded to definite depends on McGaughey's perception of a planned workout on Sunday.
It will be a busy day at the track, with Todd Pletcher planning to send out Revolutionary, Palace Malice, Overanalyze, Unlimited Budget and Midnight Taboo for breezes.
Freedom Child is not likely to breeze again for Tom Albertrani; the trainer said a strong gallop will suffice after Freedom Child exited last Monday's work with a vigorous attitude.
Edgar Prado, who was aboard Birdstone when he denied Smarty Jones a Triple Crown in the 2004 Belmont Stakes, has been named to ride Giant Finish for trainer Tony Dutrow. Giant Finish was tenth in the Kentucky Derby after being added to the Derby field at the eleventh hour.
Code West, Unlimited Budget
Bad news for Code West fans? Mike Repole told Tim Wilkin of the Albany Times-Union on Thursday that he's 99 percent sure Rosie Napravnik will ride Unlimited Budget in the Belmont Stakes. Bob Baffert had lined up Napravnik to ride Code West -- if he were to run.