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Jul 23, 2010

Lukas has Mine That Bird work at Saratoga


Saratoga Springs, NY (Sports Network) - Former Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird put in a one-mile workout Wednesday morning at Saratoga Race Course. The four-year-old gelding is being readied for a start in the Whitney Handicap next month.

Coming off a disappointing eighth in the Firecracker Handicap at Churchill Downs, Mine That Bird worked the mile in 1:40.14 on Saratoga's Oklahoma Training Track. Regular rider Calvin Borel was in the saddle.

"I loved his work," said Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas. "It was a nice move; for a horse to work a mile in 1:40 on the training track, on any track, is pretty good, and he came home with good energy.

"I worked him a mile because I think he needed a little more. He'll work one more time, and then it's time to dance the dance."

The Firecracker on July 4 was the gelding's initial race of 2010 and his first career start on turf. He had not started in a race since finishing ninth in the Breeders' Cup Classic last November.

Owned by Mark Allen and Dr, Leonard Blach, Mine That Bird has not won since his surprise victory in last year's Run for the Roses as a 50-1 longhsot. His best race since the win was two weeks later in the Preakness Stakes when he rallied to get within a length of Rachel Alexandra.

The expected favorite in the Whitney is leading four-year-old colt Quality Road. Trained by Todd Pletcher, Quality Road is perfect in three starts this year, coming out on top in the Hal's Hope Stakes, Donn Handicap and the Met Mile.

Also being pointed toward the 1 1/8-mile race on August 7 is Stephen Foster Handicap winner Blame.

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