By Dick Downey
Updated 4:20 pm ET
On a foggy, rainy morning at Belmont Park, Vino Rosso and Noble Indy put in final workouts for the Belmont Stakes.
Facing a main track that was going to be sealed during renovation, trainer Todd Pletcher decided to send the pair to the training track, which was not in best condition itself.
Noble Indy and Vino Rosso worked separately on a surface rated good.
With Javier Castellano aboard, Noble Indy went five furlongs in 1:01.22 (1/10), breezing, in company with Hyndford. DRF clocker Mike Welsch got him out six furlongs with some urging in 1:14.63, seven in 1:28.16 and a mile in 1:41.82. The colt was wearing blinkers today.
Vino Rosso, who's worn blinkers in his last three races, didn't have them on for today's workout. Under John Velazquez and in company with Patch, he also worked five furlongs, breezing, with an official time of 1:01.55 (3/10) assigned by NYRA clockers. Welsch reported on Twitter he was asked to go around the turn. Welsch had him out six furlongs in 1:15.48, seven in 128.01 and a mile 1:42.09.
"I thought they both worked very well," said Pletcher. "We got the type of work we were hoping for, kind of a long steady five-eighths with a big gallop-out. I got them both in around 1:42 for the mile which was what I was looking for. Both of them showed they were in good form."
Last week, the duo went a half-mile together in a bullet 47.04 in their first work since the Kentucky Derby.
"Last week on the main track, they worked together and went a little quicker than I wanted," said Pletcher. "I didn't want to do that again. Today I wanted a long, stamina building work. The thing I liked about both horses was the work on the main track was as good as I've seen them go. I wanted to go on the main track because of that this morning. I'm glad we got it in when we did. I think they showed last week they handled the main track very well, and I hope that proves to be the case."
Pletcher said beating Justify would be a tall order for any of his Belmont rivals.
"I feel as good as I can feel," he said. "With the five weeks in between races, and that they've been here at Belmont since two days after the Derby, we're hoping that will give them a little bit of an edge. I think, like all of us, we need Justify to wake up on the wrong side of the bed to have a chance."