Hofburg, the Florida Derby runner-up, worked five furlongs in 1:01.40 Sunday morning at Payson Park and will be headed by van to Churchill Downs on Monday to continue preparations for the May 5 Kentucky Derby.
Trainer Bill Mott said Hofburg worked in company Sunday, going from the half-mile pole to the wire in 48.40 seconds and then continuing on another eighth of a mile that he had in 13 seconds. Mott said Hofburg galloped out six furlongs but did not go as fast as last week when he went six furlongs in 1:15.30.
“We didn’t have him gallop out quite as strong as last week,” said Mott, who had regular exercise rider Felipe Castro aboard. “He went out well enough.”
Hofburg has had two breezes since the Florida Derby and will have one more work at Churchill Downs next Sunday or Monday, Mott said.
“He’s moving really well, his works have been good,” Mott said.
Mott delayed his shipping plans to Churchill by a week owing to the uncertainty of the weather in Kentucky. Hofburg will leave Payson by van Monday afternoon and get into Kentucky early Tuesday morning.
Hofburg will have a few stablemates with him including Good Samaritan, who also worked on Sunday at Payson but not with Hofburg as he did last week. Good Samaritan, winner of the New Orleans Handicap, will make his next start in the Grade 2, $400,000 Alysheba Stakes on May 4.
Also headed to Churchill are Yoshida and Channel Maker, both of whom are nominated to the Grade 1 Old Forester Turf Classic on May 5.