Goldencents takes final Santa Anita Derby workout
Arcadia, CA (Sports Network) - Sham Stakes winner Goldencents had his last workout Friday morning for next Saturday's Santa Anita Derby. Eight horses are listed as probable for the $750,000 Kentucky Derby prep at 1 1/8 miles.
Trained by Doug O'Neill, Goldencents worked six furlongs in 1:14 with exercise rider Jonny Garcia aboard.
"Now all we have to do is stay injury-free and gallop into the big one," O'Neill said. "Jonny's been doing just a brilliant job of trying to slow him down. The horse has been running well enough that I didn't put a lot of energy into changing up the morning activities because he kept running good."
Goldencents followed the Sham victory with a fourth in the San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita on March 9.
"After the San Felipe, and how the race didn't unfold perfectly and we didn't get the results we wanted," O'Neill explained. "I figured, you know what? I really need to start putting some energy into getting him to slow it down.
"If you're going to experiment, this is the best time to do it. That's why they call these races preps. We've got to learn something now. Hopefully, what we've implemented will get the results we want to see in the Santa Anita Derby. That's the goal."
The Santa Anita Derby offers 100 points to the winner, 40 for second, 20 for third and 10 for fourth. Goldencents has 29 points coming into next week's race.
"Being the first year, no one really knows what to make of it," said O'Neill about the new Kentucky Derby points system to determine the starting field. "But I do think you can't rest on your laurels as a 2-year-old nowadays. You've got to really be productive in these 3-year-old preps. It makes it interesting, and I guess you hope a good horse doesn't have to scramble to try to get there."
According to the track, here are the probable starters for the 76th Santa Anita Derby: Flashback, Hear the Ghost, Goldencents, Super Ninety Nine, Power Broker, Tiz a Minister, Storm Fighter and Dirty Swagg.
03/29 16:37:58 ET