Under a cloudy sky -- and before the eyes of dozens of curious trainers and jockey -- Kentucky Derby-bound Done Talking had his final workout at Laurel Park early this morning.
The Hamilton Smith-trained colt went five furlongs in just over a minute under Sheldon Russell, his regular rider and the top jockey in Maryland. Both Smith and Russell said they felt the horse handled the work well.
Smith, 67 and a Maryland regular for more than 30 years, has never had a Triple Crown horse. But he is pleased with how Done Talking has responded after winning the Illinois Derby and anticipates a strong run next Saturday. The colt will ship to Louisville early Sunday morning and should arrive at Churchill Downs by 4. He'll be stabled at Dale Romans' barn; Romans' Derby horse, Dullahan, was broken along with Done Talking by Smith's brother, Franklin, in South Carolina.
"He had them from the time the first saddle was put on them until they came up to the races," added Smith. "[My brother] called me once he got to breezing [Done Talking] and said he had a nice colt that he'd like me to have. He hasn't missed a trick for us. He is a very smart horse and he does everything right."
Most handicappers appear to believe Done Talking will be a 50-1 shot.
"I am looking forward to a great race out of him. I really am," Smith said. "If we get pace up front that should help us. Naturally you need to have a good trip with all those horses in there. With his running style you worry about getting shut off but if we can be mid-pack early, about eighth or ninth and relax, we might shock everybody."