By Dick Downey
Sunday morning, two Todd Pletcher Kentucky Derby hopefuls put in workouts: Intense Holiday and We Miss Artie, the latter one now with a Derby jockey assignment. Wildcat Red put in his penultimate Derby work at Gulfstream Park.
All three horses are scheduled to ship to Louisville on Tuesday, according to Churchill Downs.
Intense Holiday breezed four furlongs in :48.75 (3/9). John Velazquez has the Derby mount.
We Miss Artie went five furlongs in 1:01.19 (1/2). Javier Castellano was briefly without a Derby mount after the defection of Constitution. He’s picked up We Miss Artie, according to a Gulfstream Park official.
It was the second workout for Intense Holiday since he finished second in the Louisiana Derby on March 29, and the second for We Miss Artie since he won the Spiral Stakes on the same date.
Wildcat Red was reunited with Luis Saez Sunday morning for the first time since they teamed for a front-running victory in the Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth Stakes.
Under a motionless Saez, Wildcat Red breezed four furlongs in 48.69 (11/62), out five furlongs in 1:02.30.
“He was flying. The good thing was he got his last eighth in 11 flat,” said trainer Jose Garoffalo. “That’s all we needed. We don’t need anything more than that.”
It was the first workout for Wildcat Red since finishing a close second behind Constitution in the Besilu Stables Florida Derby on March 29.
Saez became available to ride Wildcat Red when Cairo Prince was withdrawn with an ankle injury. Rafael Bejarano was previously named to ride Wildcat Red.
“He seems better now than when I rode him,” Saez said. The jockey is scheduled to be aboard Wildcat Red for his final Derby workout next Saturday or Sunday at Churchill.
“All the time, he was my first choice since the Fountain of Youth,” said Garoffalo. “This is what I’ve been trying to do all along – get a steady rider.”