My Man Sam, Shagaf Wrap Up Derby Preparations

My Man Sam, Shagaf Wrap Up Derby Preparations

Shagaf breezing at Churchill Downs on April 24th – Coady Photography

The Chad Brown-trained pair of My Man Sam and Shagaf completed their preparations for the Kentucky Derby when they breezed four furlongs apiece at Churchill Downs on the morning of April 29th.

My Man Sam, runner-up in the Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I), was the first to breeze, going four furlongs in :49.60 shortly after the track opened for training at 5:45 a.m. With jockey Irad Ortiz, Jr. in the saddle, My Man Sam worked in company with the stakes-winning sprinter Majestic Affair and recorded fractions of :13, :25.60, and :37.80 and continued past the wire through five furlongs in 1:02.20 and six furlongs in 1:15.40.

In contrast, Gotham Stakes (gr. III) winner Shagaf went considerably quicker during his four-furlong workout, going the distance in :47.80 with fractions of :12..40, :24.40, and :35.80 plus a five-furlong gallop out time of 1:00.20. Shagaf worked solo and had exercise rider Gian Cuevo in the saddle.

Video courtesy of Churchill Downs

My Man Sam and Shagaf had originally been scheduled to breeze on Saturday, but their workouts were moved up one day due to the possibility of rain on Friday night.

In a Churchill Downs press release, Brown shared thoughts on his change in plans. “I felt like I was studying again for finals,” Brown said of constantly monitoring the weather forecast. “We felt like this would be the best day, so why risk it (waiting)? I think they worked very good.”

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Follow J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman"):

J. Keeler Johnson is a writer, blogger, videographer, and all-around horse racing enthusiast who was drawn to the sport by Curlin's quest to become North America's richest racehorse. A great fan of racing history, he considers Dr. Fager to be the greatest racehorse ever produced in America, but counts Zenyatta as his all-time favorite. He lives in Wisconsin and also writes for the blog Unlocking Winners.

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