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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 13 May 2013 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: MLS-Sporting Kansas City @ DC United (Sunday 5pm from RFK Stadium live on Comcast SportsNet); Boxing: Lamont Peterson vs. Lucas Matthysse (Saturday 9pm from Atlantic City live on Showtime); Pro Lacrosse: Chesapeake Bayhawks @ Boston Cannons (Saturday 7pm from Boston live on Comcast SportsNet/ESPN3.com); Women’s College Lacrosse: Duke @ Maryland (Saturday 12pm Field Hockey & Lacrosse Complex); High School Lacrosse: MIAA Lacrosse Championships-A Conference Semis: Calvert Hall vs. Boys’ Latin (Tuesday 5pm Unitas Stadium), Loyola vs. McDonogh (Tuesday 7:30pm Unitas Stadium), C Conference Final (Friday 3pm Unitas Stadium), B Conference Final (Friday 5:30pm Unitas Stadium), A Conference Final (Friday 8pm Unitas Stadium); Tennis: ATP Tour WTA Tour Internazionali BNL d’Italia (Tuesday 5am Wednesday-Saturday 6am Sunday 7:30am from Rome live on Tennis Channel)

10. ZZ Top (Sunday 7:30pm Pier Six Pavilion); The Band Perry (Saturday 5:30pm Merriweather Post Pavilion); Luke Bryan (Saturday 4pm Jiffy Lube Live); Infieldfest feat. Pitbull, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Chevelle, Florida Georgia Line, Afrojack (Saturday 12pm Pimlico), Goo Goo Dolls/Rodney Atkins (Friday 2pm Pimlico); Alkaline Trio (Friday 8pm Rams Head Live); Ghostface Killah (Tuesday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Lee Brice (Wednesday 9pm Rams Head Center Stage); Paramore (Saturday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Mickey Hart Band (Tuesday 8pm Howard Theatre), Brian McKnight (Friday 8pm & 10:30pm Howard Theatre), Blind Boys of Alabama (Saturday 8pm Howard Theatre); Joe Bonamassa (Tuesday 8pm France-Merrick Performing Arts Center at The Hippodrome); Chicago (Wednesday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Youngblood Hawke (Wednesday 6pm U Street Music Hall); Chesapeake Bay Blues Festival feat. Bonnie Raitt, Mavis Staples, Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue (Saturday & Sunday Sandy Point State Park); Anti-Flag (Monday 7:30pm DC9)

I haven’t seen Macklemore & Ryan Lewis yet. Looking forward to seeing what they bring to the table Saturday.

Chevelle is a rock and roll band I regularly find myself enjoying.

Goo Goo Dolls are a band I really used to find myself enjoying.

I’m going to the O’s game Sunday but I’m awfully tempted to duck out early to see Mavis.

9. Lewis Black (Sunday 8pm Sixth & I Historic Synagogue); Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling (Thursday 8pm Baltimore Comedy Factory); Aries Spears (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); “Cloud Atlas” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); Star Trek Into Darkness” out in theaters (Thursday); Preakness Hot Air Balloon Festival (Thursday-Saturday Turf Valley); Wine In The Woods (Saturday & Sunday Symphony Woods)

I’ll just go ahead and say “yes” to Lewis Black.

If they haven’t brought back Rachel Nichols to play the Green Girl in Star Trek I might boycott going.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Derby winner Orb arrives at Pimlico for Preakness

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Derby winner Orb arrives at Pimlico for Preakness

Posted on 13 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DERBY WINNER ORB ARRIVES AT PIMLICO FOR PREAKNESS

BALTIMORE, 05-13-13 – Kentucky Derby winner Orb arrived at Pimlico Race Course Monday, stepping off the van that transported him from Belmont Park shortly after 3 p.m. to continue his preparation for Saturday’s 138th running of the Preakness Stakes (G1).

Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s homebred 3-year-old colt hungrily grazed on grass for 40 minutes before being bedded down in Stall 40, the stall annually reserved for the Kentucky Derby (G1) winner.

Trainer Shug McGaughey arrived at Pimlico approximately an hour after the van and was pleased with his colt’s condition, as well as honored that his Derby winner was occupying the same stall that housed so many thoroughbred greats through the years.

“You can’t believe how proud I am,” the Hall of Fame trainer said while addressing the media. “I’m thrilled to be standing here right now. I couldn’t be a happier guy. I’m excited to be here today.”

Orb won his fifth straight race at Churchill Downs on May 4 while providing his trainer with his first Kentucky Derby success in a very distinguished career. McGaughey, who will be seeking his first Preakness victory with Orb, hasn’t competed in the Preakness since 1989, when Kentucky Derby runner-up Easy Goer lost the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown to Kentucky Derby winner Sunday Silence by a nose.

“Obviously, I’m here with the Derby winner, so I’m probably a lot more at ease than when I came in that time,” said McGaughey, who saddled Easy Goer for a victory over Sunday Silence in the Belmont Stakes (G1). “We’re excited where we are. We’re glad to be here.”

Orb was the second Preakness hopeful to arrive at Pimlico, joining Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner Goldencents, the 17th-place Derby finisher who shipped in early last week.

“When I came in ’89, we came in here on Tuesday. This year, I made up my mind I wanted to work him a day out from there and get him down here to try to get him used to his surroundings,” McGaughey said. “I want to school him in the paddock and not do too much at one time, so I figured we’d get him in here today.”

Orb will likely be heavily favored in the Preakness.

“Not that I’m not going to be watching the other horses – watching their workouts, how they do, and how they ship in here – but my main concern is Orb and trying to get him from Monday afternoon to Saturday afternoon the best way that I possibly can,” McGaughey said.

Before stepping onto the Pimlico-bound van, Orb was sent to the track at Belmont for a final workout for the Preakness. The son of Malibu Moon, who breezed a half-mile under exercise rider Jenn Patterson, was timed in 47.18, the fifth-fastest of 96 recorded at the distance Monday morning.

“His work this morning was nothing short of magnificent,”  McGaughey said. “I couldn’t be happier with where we are.”

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Orb “magnificent”, Vyjack out of Preakness

Posted on 13 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DERBY HERO ORB ‘MAGNIFICENT’ IN WORKOUT FOR PREACHINESS

GOVENOR CHARLIE, MYLUTE, LUKAS DUO BREEZE IN KENTUCKY

 

BALTIMORE, 05-13-13 – Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Orb made a strong impression at Belmont Park Monday morning during a four-furlong tune-up for Saturday’s 138th Preakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico Race Course.

“I thought it was nothing short of magnificent,” trainer Shug McGaughey said after Orb made his sharp workout under exercise rider Jenn Patterson look effortless.

The son of Malibu Moon was timed in 47.18 seconds for the half-mile after breezing the first quarter of a mile in 24.47 seconds. Orb galloped out five furlongs in 59.54 seconds.

“He broke off very relaxed and finished up unbelievably, just on his own. I was shocked when I looked down at my watch and saw he worked from the eighth-pole to the wire in 11-and-change,” said McGaughey, who revealed that the work sent chills up his back. “He was covering the ground as good as a horse could cover it. He galloped out fine, dropped his head and walked home.”

Leading up to his commanding 2 ½-length Kentucky Derby victory on May 4, Orb produced a strong half-mile workout in company at Churchill Downs that also received rave reviews.

“All in all, I was just as impressed with this work as I was with the one in Louisville. It was a cool morning here and the track had a little bounce to it, because it had a little moisture in it from the rains over the weekend, and it was in terrific shape,” said McGaughey, whose colt turned in the fifth-fastest clocking of 96 recorded at the four-furlong distance. “But the way he went and the way he finished, well in hand, and came back, it was very, very visually impressive to me, and I couldn’t be happier with what I saw.”

Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s home-bred colt was loaded on a van shortly after 10 a.m. and was scheduled to arrive at Pimlico in mid-afternoon. Orb will occupy Stall 40 in the Preakness Stakes Barn, the stall that is traditionally reserved for the Kentucky Derby hero.

 

GOVENOR CHARLIE – Mike Pegram’s homebred colt showed that he has recovered from the minor problems that kept him out of the Kentucky Derby with a sharp six-furlong work in 1:10 4/5 Monday morning at Churchill Downs.

Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert was satisfied with the performance and said a final decision on whether to run in the Preakness will be made Tuesday. Govenor Charlie, winner of the Sunland Derby (G3) on March 24, is booked on a flight from Louisville, Ky. to Maryland on Wednesday.

“He worked good enough to run,” Baffert said. “I think today we’re caught up for the little time that we lost.”

Govenor Charlie was found to have a bruise in a hind foot in April, was examined at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital and subsequently missed two workouts. Baffert then decided he was not ready for the Derby.

The work Monday was his third since returning from the break in training and was the fastest of four at the distance. Working in company with Fed Biz, who was ridden by Rosie Napravnik, Govenor Charlie turned in split times of :11 4/5, :23 4/5, :35 and :58 1/5 under Ricardo Santana Jr. He galloped out seven furlongs in 1:24 4/5.

“That’s him,” Baffert said. “When he starts working like that, it means he’s doing really well.”

However, Baffert said he wouldn’t commit the son of Midnight Lute to the Preakness until Tuesday.

“I have to see how he comes out of it,” Baffert said. “He went very, very well. That’s a call that I have to make.”

 

MYLUTE – GoldMark Farm and Whisper Hill Farm’s Mylute, the fifth-place finisher in the Kentucky Derby, worked a half-mile in 49 3/5 seconds over a fast surface at Churchill Downs shortly after the track opened for training at 6 a.m.

Working on his own and with jockey Rosie Napravnik up, Mylute jogged once around and then galloped once around with a pony before producing fractions of :12 4/5, :24 4/5 and galloping out five furlongs in 1:04 2/5. The half-mile time was the 20thfastest of 40 recorded at the distance for the morning.

“It was a good breeze and the track was in excellent shape,” trainer Tom Amoss said. “This was similar to what he did before the Kentucky Derby but just a bit faster, and I hope that is a product of him being ready to roll.”
OXBOW/TITLETOWN FIVE/WILL TAKE CHARGE – Five-time Preakness-winning trainer D. Wayne Lukas sent Oxbow and Will Take Charge, his sixth- and eighth-place Kentucky Derby finishers, respectively, to the track for four-furlong workouts Monday morning at Churchill Downs.

After the renovation break, Oxbow, ridden by jockey Gary Stevens, came out to work a half-mile in 49 4/5 seconds, the 22ndfastest of 40 for the morning at the distance. The son of Awesome Again posted fractions of :12 3/5, :24 3/5 and :37 3/5  before galloping out five furlongs in 1:03 3/5.

Earlier, Will Take Charge, who is scheduled to be ridden by Mike Smith, worked a half-mile in 48 2/5 seconds under exercise rider Rudy Quevedo. Will Take Charge posted fractions of :12 3/5, :24 1/5 and :36 for the work that ranked sixth fastest of 40 at the distance.

Titletown Five, who will be ridden in the Preakness by Julien Leparoux, was the first Lukas horse on the track Monday and he open-galloped 1 ¼ miles with a blowout down the stretch that was not recorded by clockers. Quevedo was aboard.

“We varied them a bit, but it was pretty much what I wanted,” said Lukas of Oxbow and Will Take Charge. “Coming off a tough race in the mud (in the Derby), the tendency sometimes is to do too much.”

Stevens, a two-time Preakness winner, liked Oxbow’s work.

“Time was not a factor and this was more about his mind and keeping him relaxed for the trip (to Maryland) tomorrow,” said Stevens, who tasted Preakness success with Silver Charm (1997) and Point Given (2001). “The main thing is to keep him happy. I think I am sitting on the right horse with the right style.”

Stevens envisions a different pace scenario from the Derby, in which Palace Malice led the field through the mud in fractions of :22.57, :45.33 and 1:09.80.

“I do not think the pace will be the same,” Stevens said. “You may want to forgive some of the horses for their races in the Derby. I thought Goldencents would be with us on the lead and he was outside of us and getting all the kickback. At the five-eighths pole, I could see that Kevin (Krigger on Goldencents) was not comfortable and he could not go inside, because that is where I was, and he had two horses on his outside.

“I think you can throw that race out and I respect all of the opposition.”

Lukas said his Pimlico contingent would start loading at the barn at 3 a.m. Tuesday and expects to be at Old Hilltop around 4 p.m. The Hall of Fame conditioner will be on the van with his horses.

“I go with them whether we fly or go by van,” Lukas said. “I just like to be with them.”

 

DEPARTING – Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider’s Departing walked the shedrow at Barn 45 at Churchill Downs Monday morning, a day after working a half-mile in 50 2/5 seconds.

Trainer Al Stall Jr. said the Illinois Derby (G3) winner came out of the work fine and is scheduled to return to the track Tuesday morning to gallop a mile. Brian Hernandez Jr., who has been aboard Departing in all five of his starts, has the Preakness mount.
GOLDENCENTS – Trainer Doug O’Neill stood on the deck outside the press box at Pimlico around 8:45 on a brisk Monday morning to get an overhead view of his Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner going through a spirited mile gallop under jockey Kevin Krigger.

“I thought he went really well,” said O’Neill, who won last year’s Preakness with Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another. “Kevin was kind enough to come over here after Churchill and get to know him even better – even though he knows him so well. Coming down the lane, Goldencents was so comfortable and he was reaching out great. I just loved what I saw today.”

O’Neill had originally planned to give the son of Into Mischief a workout at Pimlico after his poor performance in the Kentucky Derby (an eased-up 17th), but on Sunday he decided to use the same training regimen he had with I’ll Have Another and gallop into the race.

“I think he trains as hard as a lot of horses work,” said the 44-year-old Michigan native, who had the only Preakness contender on the grounds as of Monday morning. “He puts in a good effort every day, so in my mind there’s just no need – unless we have some weather issues or something like that. The goal was: if he could gallop comfortably every day, that’s what we would do, and so far, so good.”

O’Neill, who sent 12 horses to Pimlico, including Goldencents, shortly after the Derby, said he doesn’t expect part-owner Rick Pitino to be present for the Preakness, but his son, Richard, is planning to attend. Pitino, who coached Louisville to the NCAA basketball title in March, owns five percent of Goldencents with W.C. Racing and Dave Kenney.

Goldencents was the third choice in the wagering in Kentucky off his impressive victory in the Santa Anita Derby, but he was really not a factor after the first half-mile or so at Churchill Downs.

“When we got to the three-eighths pole the race changed for him completely,” said Krigger, who came directly to Pimlico with the colt after the Derby. “He went from just sitting comfortably to just not giving me the effort that he usually puts out. When we got to the five-sixteenths pole he just started regressing more for whatever reason it was, and I just decided, instead of harassing him and causing him to struggle on the sloppy track, to protect him and wrap up on him and brought him home.”

Last year, I’ll Have Another was the target; this year O’Neill comes to Baltimore as the hunter, seeking to stop Orb’s quest to add the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown.

“It was a great feeling last year being the hunted, but a hunter’s not bad,” said the Southern California-based conditioner, whose Triple Crown bid with I’ll Have Another was thwarted by an injury that forced him to scratch the day before the Belmont Stakes (G1).  “Just being here is a real honor, and I give great thanks to the horse and the owners. This (the Preakness) is just an experience you want to be part of.”

Goldencents has already earned $1.2 million with four victories from seven starts, and O’Neill is drawing a line through the Derby.

“I think it was kind of a demanding track, and it just wasn’t to our liking,” he said. “I think we’re going to see a much better result Saturday.”

 

ITSMYLUCKYDAY – Itsmyluckyday came out of his half-mile workout at Monmouth Park Sunday afternoon “100 percent,” reported trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. Monday morning.

“He was acting like nothing happened,” said Plesa of Itsmyluckyday’s behavior when he checked on his Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) winner Monday.

The son of Lawyer Ron worked between Sunday’s third and fourth races at Monmouth, breezing four furlongs in 47 1/5 seconds.

Itsmyluckyday is scheduled to van to Pimlico at 11 a.m. Tuesday.

 

VYJACK – Trainer Rudy Rodriguez informed Maryland Jockey Club officials Monday morning that Vyjack, the 18th-place Derby finisher, will not be entered in the Preakness Stakes.

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Field set for Friday’s Black-Eyed Susan at Pimlico

Posted on 12 May 2013 by WNST Staff

LOCALS EYE BLACK-EYED SUSAN WITH A ‘PURPOSE’

Maryland-bred, based Walkwithapurpose looks to rebound in 89th renewal of Grade 2, 3-year-old filly feature

BALTIMORE, 05-12-13—Five weeks after a disappointing loss in her graded stakes debut, Walkwithapurpose returns to more familiar surroundings in Friday’s $500,000 Black-Eyed Susan (G2) at Pimlico Race Course.

Foaled at Sagamore Farm in Glyndon, Md., a half-hour’s drive from Pimlico, Walkwithapurpose will take on eight challengers in the 1 1/8-mile Black-Eyed Susan, led by Grade 1 winner and 9-5 program favorite Emollient.

One of Pimlico’s oldest stakes races, first run as the Pimlico Oaks in 1919, the Black-Eyed Susan will be contested 10th on a 13-race card that features seven stakes, including the $300,000 Pimlico Special (G3), which returned from a four-year hiatus in 2012.

Also on Friday’s card is the Xpressbet Jockey Challenge, newly formatted to pit four each of the top male and female riders in competition, and the Lady Legends for the Cure IV, presented by Wells Fargo. A pari-mutuel event with eight retired female riding pioneers, the race is run as part of joint effort between Pimlico and Susan G. Komen for the Cure, the world’s largest breast cancer organization.

A bay daughter of Candy Ride, Walkwithapurpose took a five-race win streak into the Gazelle (G2) on April 6 at Aqueduct, her first race outside of Maryland. Despite some early trouble, she raced near the lead before drifting wide in the stretch and finishing third, beaten seven lengths.

“The saddle slipped coming out of the gate,” trainer Ignacio “Nacho” Correas said. “I don’t know what she hit or what happened, but it slipped. It was the first time she was going a mile and an eighth, the first time going two turns, the first time for a lot of stuff.

“Being locals, we are home, so she already has experience over the track. I think that’s a different thing. There’s some very good competitors in the race, but it should be better this time. She’s been doing very good.”

Though Walkwithapurpose has never raced at Pimlico, she has trained daily over the track since Correas moved his string from Laurel Park in late March, including a bullet half-mile breeze in :47.40 on May 10.

“Compared to the way she went into the Gazelle, I would say she is more comfortable now here at Pimlico,” Correas said. “We moved from Laurel to Pimlico like 15 days before the Gazelle, and she didn’t really enjoy the change that much. But, now, she feels at home again, and she’s training really good.”

Third in her debut last September at Timonium, Walkwithapurpose reeled off three straight wins to end her 2-year-old season, capped by an eight-length romp in the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Filly Championship Dec. 31 at Laurel Park.

This year, she extended her win streak to five with victories in the $125,000 Wide Country Stakes and the $150,000 Caesar’s Wish Stakes, both at Laurel, by 14 ¼ lengths combined.

“We knew that she had talent. I cannot tell you that from the get-go I knew she was going to be the kind of filly that she is,” Correas said. “I said after the Maryland [JFC] that we will point to the Black-Eyed Susan, because she hinted enough at that point to think that it was doable. I think we are participating in this race in a good spot. She could be here and not be as good as she is, but she is a very, very nice filly.”

Founded in 1925, Sagamore Farm was brought to prominence by A.G. Vanderbilt during more than five decades under his guidance, ending in 1986. In 2007, the farm was purchased by Under Armour CEO Kevin Plank, a native of Maryland.

“I think it would be a dream come true for all of us,” Correas said of a Black-Eyed Susan victory. “For Kevin, he’s a big fan of Maryland, so it would be an honor. For us, it’s a very big race. This is only the second crop that we bred. The fact that we are there already makes the farm proud, and being there with a shot. Winning would be a cherry on the top.”

Trained by Hall of Famer Bill Mott for owner Juddmonte Farms, Emollient has won two of three starts this year, most recently going gate to wire in the $500,000 Ashland (G1) over the all-weather track at Keeneland on April 6. An allowance winner to begin her 3-year-old campaign, she was second in the $250,000 Demoiselle (G2) at Aqueduct last November.

Winner of the $100,000 Santa Ysabel (G3) on a wet-fast surface at Santa Anita on Jan. 26, Fiftyshadesofhay tuned up for the race with a five-furlong breeze in 1:00.20 on May 10 at Churchill Downs, the fastest of 27 horses.

“We shipped her to Kentucky, but she really didn’t ship well. Now, she’s doing really well,” Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert said. “She’s had a couple of works. Her last work was nice, so we decided to take a shot at it.”

The Black-Eyed Susan field, from the rail out: Manuka Honey (John Terranova, Edgar Prado), 10-1; Lady Banks (James Lawrence, Julian Pimentel), 30-1; Fiftyshadesofhay (Bob Baffert, Joel Rosario), 2-1; Petit Trianon (Juan Vazquez, Victor Carrasco), 20-1; Walkwithapurpose (Ignacio Correas, Jose Lezcano), 5-1; Maracuya (Ralph Nicks, John Velazquez), 6-1; Emollient (Bill Mott, Mike Smith), 9-5; Toasting (Tom Albertrani, Javier Castellano), 20-1; Marathon Lady (Steve Hobby, Robby Albarado), 12-1.

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Preakness horse Itsmyluckyday to ship to Baltimore Tuesday

Posted on 12 May 2013 by WNST Staff

ITSMYLUCKYDAY ‘AWESOME’ IN PREAKNESS WORK

BALTIMORE, 05-12-13—Trilogy Stable and Laurie Plesa’s Itsmyluckyday prepped for Saturday’s $1 million Preakness Stakes (G1) with a sharp half-mile workout at Monmouth Park Sunday afternoon.

Due to the closure of the Monmouth racetrack during training hours Sunday morning, trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. received permission to work Itsmyluckyday between the third and fourth races. The son of Lawyer Ron breezed a half-mile over a fast track in a swift 47 1/5 seconds before galloping out five furlongs in 59 3/5 seconds.

“He went awesome, but that’s him,” Plesa said. “I couldn’t ask for a better work.”

Plesa plans to ship Itsmyluckyday to Pimlico on Tuesday.

The Florida-bred colt finished a disappointing 15th behind victorious Orb in the Kentucky Derby over a sloppy, sealed Churchill Downs racetrack on May 4. Previously, he had captured the Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) before finishing second to Orb in the Florida Derby (G1).

Elvis Trujillo, who rode Itsmyluckyday in the Derby, was aboard for Sunday afternoon’s workout, although Hall of Famer John Velazquez has been named to ride the Plesa trainee in the Preakness.

 

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Normandy Invasion will not run in Preakness

Posted on 12 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DEPARTING ON THE MARK IN WORKOUT FOR PREAKNESS STAKES

NORMANDY INVASION TO PASS; ORB SCHOOLS, GALLOPS

 

BALTIMORE, 05-12-13 –With trainer Al Stall Jr. and jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. watching from the grandstand, Illinois Derby (G3) winner Departing worked a half-mile in 50 2/5 seconds over a fast track at Churchill Downs on Sunday morning in preparation for Saturday’s Preakness Stakes (G1).

With former jockey Larry Melancon up, Departing worked on his own while producing fractions of :13 1/5, :25 2/5, :38 1/5 and galloped out five furlongs in 1:03 4/5.

“I wanted him to go a little slower the first part than the second part and he hit right on what we were looking for,” Stall said. “He did enough to get the day off tomorrow. He is a gelding and doesn’t carry a lot of weight. He had galloped two miles on Thursday and a spirited mile and half Friday.”

Owned by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, Departing is scheduled to walk Monday and then train Tuesday and Wednesday morning before shipping to Pimlico Race Course on Wednesday afternoon. Stall said he has a 2 p.m. flight Wednesday and would be in Baltimore in time for the Preakness draw that afternoon.

Departing will be the second Preakness starter for Stall, whose Terrain finished seventh in 2009 behind eventual Horse of the Year Rachel Alexandra. Like Terrain, Departing did not run in the Kentucky Derby prior to the Preakness.

“After the Louisiana Derby, the Kentucky Derby was off the table with the point system,” Stall said. “It worked out well for us. The Illinois Derby billed itself as a prep for the Preakness and hopefully we can make it successful for the Illinois Derby.”

Waiting at Pimlico when Departing arrives will be Kentucky Derby winner Orb, who shared a paddock at Claiborne Farm in his early days with Departing. Orb is owned by Stuart Janney III and the Phipps Stable.

“Those families have been down the road before,” Stall said of the Hancocks of Claiborne Farm and the Phippses. “Seeking the Gold and Forty Niner ran against each other in big races like the Derby, Haskell and Travers (in 1988), and I am sure they are all going to try to run their ‘A’ race.”

As many as eight horses that ran in the Derby remain under consideration for the Preakness, headed by Orb.

“Orb will be even money or less,” Stall said of the Derby victor who earned the roses over a sloppy, sealed track. “There have been horses that have rebounded from Derbys, like Louis Quatorze (16th in the 1996 Derby), that won or ran well in the Preakness.

“Goldencents trained well here and then ran a 32 Beyer (Speed Figure) in the Derby. Horses can come back to themselves and run 70 to 80 points higher.”

Stall is eager to get to Baltimore.

“It is exciting and there is maybe more buildup to this than with Blame in the 2010 Breeders’ Cup Classic,” said Stall, who saddled Blame for a thrilling victory over previously undefeated Zenyatta in the 2010 Classic at Churchill. “My wife is from Baltimore and we are looking forward to a good time there and enjoying the race.”
ORB – Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s Orb visited the Belmont Park paddock before galloping 1 ½ miles over a sloppy track Sunday morning.

Trainer Shug McGaughey also continued to stay busy with a flood of media requests that come with saddling the winner of the Kentucky Derby.

“I think it’s a big responsibility to accommodate what’s out there and try to portray what the win means to all of us – myself and my family, the Janneys and Phippses and their families and all the people at the barn,” the Hall of Fame trainer said. “I’d like to get it out there to people that racing can be a fun and rewarding sport.”

Orb, who captured the Derby by 2 ½ lengths a week ago, is scheduled to breeze at Belmont Park Monday morning, as long as the track at Belmont dries out.

“I think it will be fine. The sun’s out, there’s no humidity and the wind’s picking up. I think it’ll be fine,” said McGaughey, who is planning to ship Orb to Pimlico Monday following the scheduled breeze.
ITSMYLUCKYDAY – Itsmyluckyday is scheduled to work out between races at Monmouth Park Sunday afternoon in preparation for a start in the Preakness.

“The racetrack was closed this morning. I’m going to work him between the third and fourth races here at Monmouth,” trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. said. “Elvis Trujillo is going to work him.”

Itsmyluckyday was ridden by Trujillo in the Kentucky Derby, in which he finished 15th, but Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez has the mount for the Preakness. Trujillo had previously ridden the Florida-bred colt to victory in the Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) before a second-place finish behind Orb in the Florida Derby (G1).

 

GOLDENCENTS – Trainer Doug O’Neill has decided not to work the Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner between the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness. Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson, who has been overseeing the care of O’Neill’s 14 horses at Pimlico, said that a plan for a breeze Monday morning had been scrapped and the colt will gallop up to the Preakness.

“It was never certain that he was going to work. It was kind of tentative,” Sisterson said. “We never worked I’ll Have Another, so we’re going to stay on that schedule.”

O’Neill sent 2012 Derby winner I’ll Have Another to Pimlico two days after his victory at Churchill Downs. The colt flourished in the low-key atmosphere at Pimlico, turned in vigorous gallops and won the Preakness. Goldencents disappointed as the third choice in the Derby wagering, finishing 17th on the sloppy, sealed racetrack. O’Neill followed suit, though, and shipped Goldencents to Pimlico, where he resumed his morning-gallop schedule last Friday under his regular jockey, Kevin Krigger.

”He’s getting enough out of his training where he doesn’t need to work,” Sisterson said. “He’s doing very well.”

Krigger put Goldencents through the same routine Sunday, jogging down the stretch and around the first turn before sending him off to gallop a lap of the track.

“The one thing we’re starting to notice is he’s getting better each day,” Sisterson said. “He hasn’t put a foot wrong since we got here. He seems to be really getting over the track well and striding out. We’re very happy with him.”

O’Neill is scheduled to travel from California to Baltimore on Sunday and be at the barn at Pimlico Monday morning.

In 2012, O’Neill’s stable pony, the retired stakes winner Lava Man, received a lot of attention as he led the Derby winner to and from the track each morning. Lava Man isn’t part of the Preakness scene this year because of his relationship – or lack of it – with Goldencents.

“They’ve got the similarities where they are eager to train. Putting them both together, they wind each other up,” said Sisterson, who has been ponying Goldencents aboard Sapphire. “This is more of a relaxed pony.  It’s not to say that Lava Man and Goldencents don’t get along, but we want to have him as relaxed as possible in the morning to the point where he’s getting the most out of his training, instead of being wound up going to the track.”

A member of O’Neill’s staff said it is like putting two Type-A personalities together on a project.

“They kind of butt heads at times,” Sisterson said. “You get that with people. They enjoy training, they want to get on with it and they’re eager to make it happen. That’s both Goldencents and Lava Man.”

 

GOVENOR CHARLIE – Mike Pegram’s Govenor Charlie had an easy two-mile gallop under exercise rider Jorge Alvarez at Churchill Downs Sunday morning. The Bob Baffert trainee, who schooled in the Churchill paddock during Sunday’s first race, is scheduled to work Monday.

 

MYLUTE – GoldMark Farm and Whisper Hill Farm’s Mylute galloped 1 ½ miles at Churchill Downs under exercise rider Maurice Sanchez. The fifth-place Kentucky Derby finisher is scheduled to work Monday morning.

“It will be an easy half, nothing fancy,” trainer Tom Amoss said.

Jockey Rosie Napravnik is scheduled to be aboard for the work slated for 6 a.m.

 

NORMANDY INVASION – Trainer Chad Brown reported Sunday afternoon that Rick Porter’s Normandy Invasion will not run in the Preakness Stakes.

“Mr. Porter and I decided to pass on the Preakness with Normandy Invasion and focus on the summer campaign with him,” Brown said.

Normandy Invasion turned in a strong performance in the Kentucky Derby, taking the lead in the stretch before finishing fourth, 3 1/2 lengths behind Orb. Brown ruled out the Preakness on the morning after the Derby but decided on Monday to consider the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown for a few days.

 

OXBOW/TITLETOWN FIVE/WILL TAKE CHARGE – Oxbow and Will Take Charge, the sixth- and eighth-place finishers, respectively, in the Kentucky Derby jogged two miles at Churchill Downs and Titletown Five, fourth in the Derby Trial (G3) in his most recent start, galloped 1 ½ miles Sunday morning.

“Oxbow and Will Take Charge will work in the morning and Titletown Five will breeze through the stretch,” trainer D. Wayne Lukas said.

The Lukas Pimlico contingent that figures to be eight strong is scheduled to leave Louisville by van at 3 a.m. Tuesday.

 

VYJACK – Pick Six Racing’s Gotham (G3) winner remains a Preakness candidate. Aqueduct-based trainer Rudy Rodriguez said a decision on whether to run the gelding may not be made until Wednesday when entries are taken. Jockey Garrett Gomez had trouble controlling Vyjack early in the Derby. He was up on the pace in the early stages of the race but gave way and finished 18th.

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Napravnik-ridden Mylute will run in Preakness

Posted on 11 May 2013 by WNST Staff

NAPRAVNIK TO RETURN TO HER ROOTS FOR PREAKNESS  STAKES

MYLUTE A GO FOR MIDDLE JEWEL; DERBY HERO ORB GALLOPS; STREET SPICE NO LONGER A CANDIDATE

 

BALTIMORE, 05-11-13 – Moments after learning that trainer Tom Amoss had confirmed that Mylute would be headed to Pimlico Race Course to run in next Saturday’s Preakness Stakes (G1), jockey Rosie Napravnik expressed her excitement on Twitter Saturday morning:“Get your PREAK ON baby I’m coming home ;-) I promise you there is no other jockey who wants to win the #Preakness more than me! MYLUTE”

Another tweet quickly followed:“Ok maybe Rosario… But I bet it’s just been added to his list recently haha”

While Joel Rosario surely has been very intent on winning the Preakness since guiding Orb to victory in the Kentucky Derby (G1) at Churchill Downs on May 4, winning the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown has been on Napravnik’s radar since launching her riding career at Pimlico on June 9, 2005.

Nearly eight years later, Napravnik will have the opportunity to realize her dream of winning the Preakness aboard Mylute, whom she rode to a solid fifth-place finish behind Orb in the Kentucky Derby.

“I’m fired up,” said thoroughbred racing’s most successful woman jockey Saturday morning by phone from Churchill Downs. “The Preakness is just as high up on my list as the Derby to win. It would probably mean the most to me to win at Pimlico, where I started out and have all the original supporters, the people who really got me going. It would mean so much to win that race.”

The 25-year-old native of Morristown, N.J. credits Maryland trainers Holly Robinson and Richard Small with helping her get established and supporting her through her four years of riding and dominating at Pimlico and Laurel Park. During the summer of 2004, Napravnik moved to Robinson’s Sparks, Md. farm, where her sister, Jazz, worked as an assistant trainer. She attended nearby Hereford High School during her junior year while galloping horses and learning her trade.

On June 9, 2005, Small named the 17-year-old apprentice to ride Ringofdiamonds, and she sent her very first mount right to the lead and into the Pimlico winner’s circle. Saturday morning, Napravnik recalled her first career victory in detail.

“I remember thinking that I was so glad that it was first race of the day and I didn’t have to wait and be anxious all day. Even leading up to it, it was surreal that it was even happening. I remember not even knowing how to read the Racing Form. I had handicapped the race to the best of my ability and I figured I would be somewhere near the front of the pack. I was in the one-hole going two turns, which really isn’t that easy to do at Pimlico,” she recalled.

“Luis Garcia who had ridden the filly multiple times and won on her multiple times was also in the race. He came up to me in the paddock and said, ‘If you go to the lead, you will win easy.’ I said, ‘Oh, OK, I’ll just go to the lead,’ but I had no idea what I was doing. And somehow I got the lead from the one-hole going those two turns and we never looked back,” she added.

“I pulled my stick through to the left hand because I remember Dickie telling me really early on that that’s what I should do because everybody would be watching and everybody would notice that. So that’s what I did. I pulled my stick through to the left hand. I think I might have only hit her one time. It was all so surreal and unbelievable that I was winning that race. My mom was there. My sister was there. It was so exciting.”

She went on to win several riding titles in Maryland, where she led all jockeys in victories in 2006 and 2008, before moving on to ride in New York, Delaware and Louisiana with great success. Napravnik, who has been the leading rider at Fair Grounds for the past three meetings, became the first woman to ride the winner of the Kentucky Oaks (G1) aboard Believe You Can in 2012. Through all of her successes Napravnik has never forgotten her roots.

“When I’m riding in the Derby, all through Derby week, and when I won the Oaks last year, I automatically reflect on it and think about Dickie and Holly and starting out,” Napravnik said. “It feels like it was just yesterday to me. They are very special to me. I couldn’t be more proud to come back and ride in the Preakness.”

Napravnik is excited to ride an improving horse like Mylute in the Preakness.

“He ran an excellent race in the Derby. We got a very wide trip. We followed Orb basically the whole race. That was a big test of his class and his talent and he really came through. He’s a horse that is improving at the right time,” she said. “I think he’s going to move forward a lot off that race. I don’t think it’s something where it took everything out of him and would cause him to regress at all. He’s maturing and has the competitive drive of a really good race horse.”

Napravnik will become the third female rider to have a Preakness mount, joining Patti Cooksey (sixth aboard Tajawa in 1985) and Andrea Seefeldt (seventh with Looming in 1994).

Amoss was obviously encouraged that Mylute has maintained his form and competitive edge following a mile jog and a two-mile gallop at Churchill Downs Saturday morning.

“I talked with Paul Buhlman (of GoldMark) and Mandy Pope (of Whisper Hill) and we discussed how he was doing and how he was training and the decision was made to go to the Preakness,” Amoss said. “He is booked on the plane for Wednesday morning to go to Baltimore.”

Amoss, who plans to give Mylute a half-mile workout early Monday morning, is well aware of the task at hand in the Preakness.

“We have to find four lengths,” Amoss said referring to Orb’s advantage over Mylute in the Derby. “If Orb runs his race back in the Preakness, he will be hard to beat.”

 

ORB – Nearly a week had passed since Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s Orb registered a 2 ½-length victory in the Kentucky Derby, and trainer Shug McGaughey reflected on the highlight of his Hall of Fame career Saturday morning.

“I’m still excited. I’m still thrilled. I’ll be thrilled for the rest of my life,” McGaughey said. “The main thing is just to see how excited and how thrilled Mr. (Dinny) Phipps and Mr. Janney have been since the race. Also the morale of our barn is just through the roof. Everybody is so excited.”

McGaughey’s excitement is matched by his immense pride over Orb’s Derby performance.

“I picture that move in my mind time and time again,” he said. “He ran such a professional race and he ran so well, it was so much fun to watch.”

Orb jogged three-eighths of a mile and galloped 1 ½ miles over a sealed muddy track at Belmont Park Saturday morning.

 

DEPARTING – Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider’s Departing galloped 1 ½ miles over a track labeled “muddy” early Saturday morning at Churchill Downs with exercise rider Trina Pasckvale up.

Trained by Al Stall Jr., the Illinois Derby (G3) winner is scheduled to work a half-mile Sunday morning with Larry Melancon slated to be aboard.
GOLDENCENTS – The Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner went to the sloppy, sealed Pimlico track at 8:30 a.m. Saturday for a second day of exercise following a 17th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby. His regular jockey, Kevin Krigger, was in the saddle.

Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson is managing Goldencents and 13 other horses from trainer Doug O’Neill’s stable at Pimlico. O’Neill is scheduled to travel from California to Baltimore on Sunday.  Sisterson said that Krigger and Goldencents repeated Friday’s jog and gallop routine.

“We jogged to the seven-eighths and kind of broke off from there into a steady gallop from the three-quarter pole and galloped around to the wire,” Sisterson said. “Kevin kind of relaxed him and pulled him up down the backside. He looked fantastic and Kevin was very happy with him. His energy level was high. He was striding out. Everything we want to see in him.”

Goldencents is scheduled to work Monday morning.

 

GOVENOR CHARLIE – Mike Pegram’s Govenor Charlie galloped 1 ½ miles at Churchill over a track that had been upgraded to “good” after the morning renovation break. Jorge Alvarez was aboard for the morning exercise.

Trainer Bob Baffert plans to work the Sunland Derby (G3) winner on Monday.

 

ITSMYLUCKYDAY – A wet track at Monmouth Park prompted trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. to postpone Itsmyluckyday’s scheduled breeze Saturday morning.

“The track was hard,” Plesa said. “We’re going to try tomorrow and see what happens.”

Plesa said he could work Itsmyluckyday as late as Monday. If weather doesn’t permit it, Plesa said the son of Lawyer Ron wouldn’t need to work to be ready for the Preakness. Yet, he would prefer to give his Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) winner a breeze.

“I don’t know that he needs to work, to be honest with you, but he’s feeling so darn good. I feel it would help him. Sometimes they can have too much energy,” said Plesa, whose colt finished a disappointing 15th in the Kentucky Derby.

 

NORMANDY INVASION – Fox Hill Farms’ Normandy Invasion galloped at Belmont Park Saturday morning. Trainer Chad Brown reported that no firm decision has been made concerning his fourth-place Kentucky Derby finisher’s status for next Saturday’s Preakness.

 

OXBOW/TITLETOWN FIVE/WILL TAKE CHARGE – Trainer D. Wayne Lukas, whose first venture to the Preakness in 1980 with Codex resulted in a victory, had his three candidates for Preakness 138 on the track early at Churchill Downs on Saturday morning.

Sixth-place Kentucky Derby finisher Oxbow was the first out of the group, galloping over a muddy track under exercise rider Rudy Quevedo. Will Take Charge, eighth in the Kentucky Derby, galloped under Taylor Carty in the second set along with Titletown Five, who was partnered by Quevedo.

Lukas said that Oxbow is scheduled to work Monday and added, “I may let the other two go through the stretch” before vanning to Baltimore early Tuesday morning. Two-time Preakness-winning rider Gary Stevens, who rode Oxbow in the Kentucky Derby and who has the Preakness mount, is expected to be aboard for the work.

 

STREET SPICE – Trainer Greg Geier said Saturday that James Tafel’s homebred colt will not run in the Preakness. Geier breezed Street Spice five furlongs at Arlington Park Saturday morning before finalizing his decision to skip the Preakness with the fifth-place finisher in the Illinois Derby (G3).

“He worked good this morning, but we’re going to stay here and look for something else,” Geier said. “He worked in 1:01 and came back very good. He’s still like a big kid and still learning. I walked with Mr. Tafel and he said until the colt gets a little smarter, we’ll just play it by ear and go from there.”

 

VYJACK – Trainer Rudy Rodriquez said Saturday said that he and owner David Wilkenfeld are still considering whether to run the Into Mischief gelding in the Preakness.

“We’re going to wait until the last minute,” Rodriguez said. “It may be as late as Wednesday before they take entries. We’ll take a look, see what’s going on and then make a final decision.”

Rodriguez said Vyjack is doing well at Aqueduct following his 18th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby and isn’t likely to work between races.

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Trainer McGaughey continues to be happy with Orb’s work ahead of Preakness

Posted on 10 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DERBY WINNER ORB CONTINUES TO LOOK GOOD FOR PREAKNESS STAKES

Itsmyluckyday Scheduled for Work; Goldencents Gallops at Pimlico 

 BALTIMORE, 05-10-13—Kentucky Derby (G1) winner Orb galloped 1 ¼ miles under exercise rider Jenn Patterson at Belmont Park Friday morning, looking the picture of a happy, healthy horse ready to take on the challenge of the Preakness Stakes at Pimlico on May 18.

“I was pleased with everything I’ve been seeing,” trainer Shug McGaughey said.

The Hall of Fame trainer has had trouble taking his eyes off the 3-year-old colt that provided him with his first Kentucky Derby success at Churchill Downs on May 4.

“He’s filled out so much physically. I look at him and I can’t believe what I’m seeing from last November to now,” McGaughey said. “Mentally, everything’s come together. He was a bit difficult at the gate all of his 2-year-old year and that’s all behind him. I couldn’t be more pleased with his development.”

Orb, who closed from 17th to post a dominating 2 ½-length victory in the Derby, has won five races in a row, starting with his maiden victory at Aqueduct last November. In his two most recent starts in the Kentucky Derby and the Florida Derby (G1), in particular, Orb was well in command as he crossed the finish line, leading observers to conclude that in each instance he had reserved some energy for his next race.

“I think it’s because he’s getting it done quicker than we think he is. In the Florida Derby, Johnny (Velazquez) said he got there quicker than he thought he would and he had to throttle him down. I think it was the same in the Kentucky Derby. He got to those horses quicker than he (Joel Rosario) thought he would.”

Orb is regarded as a closer, but his running style doesn’t leave him at the mercy of the early pace.

“He comes from back, but they don’t take him back. It depends on the color of the race. If it’s a fast pace, he’ll be off of it, but if it’s slow, I think he’ll actually be laying up close like he was in the Florida Derby – within four, five, six lengths,” McGaughey said. “And he’s got enough of a punch that you don’t take him out of the game plan when you do lay up close.”

Itsmyluckyday, who finished second to Orb in the Florida Derby before faltering to 15th in the Kentucky Derby, galloped at Monmouth Park Friday morning. Trainer Eddie Plesa Jr., who arrived from his South Florida home base to Monmouth Thursday afternoon, supervised the morning exercise.

“He looked as good to me as he did in Kentucky (before the Derby),” Plesa said. “His gallop today was very, very well into the bit. He’s just feeling very good.”

Forecasts for weekend rains in New Jersey caused Plesa to call an audible while mapping out Itsmyluckyday’s work schedule.

“I’m hoping to work him the next couple days. We’re expecting rain up here. I was initially going to work him Sunday, but I’ve moved it up to Saturday,” Plesa said. “We’ll see what it looks like tomorrow. I can work him as late as Monday. If something happens and it’s still raining on Monday, which it could be, I don’t have to work him, but my preference would be to work him.”

Plesa said Itsmyluckyday is tentatively scheduled to ship to Pimlico on Tuesday.

Goldencents also turned in an enthusiastic gallop Friday morning at Pimlico Race Course under his jockey, Kevin Krigger. It was the first piece of serious exercise for the colt since he finished 17th in the Kentucky Derby last Saturday. He returned to the track Thursday and jogged.

Krigger is spending the two weeks between the Derby and the Preakness with trainer Doug O’Neill’s outfit at Pimlico. He is the exercise rider for all 14 of the O’Neill horses stabled at the Baltimore track and has picked up a pair of mounts on the Saturday racing program at Pimlico, but his priority is Goldencents, the Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner.

Goldencents jogged for a half-mile and appeared to be very alert and interested when Krigger asked him to pick up the pace and gallop about six furlongs.

“This is the first time I’ve ever been able to gallop him and I got what I was looking for out of him – a pretty good relaxed gallop,” Krigger said. “He stayed relaxed and that’s basically what I’m focusing on, letting him achieve the workouts that he needs, not be rank doing it and be comfortable and relaxed. I got that out of him this morning.”

Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson liked what he saw from the Into Mischief colt during the 20 minutes he was on the track Friday.

“He’s one horse that gets a lot out of his training,” Sisterson said. “We wanted to see how he would come out of the Kentucky Derby and he’s bounced out of it with high energy. He moved over the track well and Kevin was really happy with him this morning.”

Goldencents trained well at Churchill Downs but turned in a disappointing performance in the Derby, which was run over a sloppy, sealed surface. He was near the pace early, but on the run up the backstretch Krigger realized that Goldencents would not be a contender in the final quarter mile and didn’t ride him hard to the wire.

“It’s not the first race that he’s not run to expectations, but it was the Derby and a race that we all wanted to win,” Krigger said. “At the same time it was a race that we enjoyed participating in. We didn’t get the turnout that we were looking for but he came out of the Derby happy and he came out of the Derby sound and his energy level is up. It’s like he didn’t even run last week. We’re just keeping our focus. I don’t think any of us has lost any confidence. We looked back at the race and if he had gotten beaten in the stretch we would probably feel more disappointed than we do. It’s as simple as he didn’t run his race at all. We’re just drawing a line through that race and staying focused and keeping our confidence. As you can see, he’s doing the same thing. We’re all on the same page.”

Goldencents is scheduled to gallop again on Saturday and Sunday. O’Neill is flying in from California on Sunday to watch the colt breeze on Monday morning.

Krigger said that O’Neill will see a horse that has adapted well to the track.

“He looks great, is traveling great,” Krigger said. “From my first day galloping him, I’m pretty confident that we’re going to be pretty competitive in the Preakness.”

Krigger is looking to become the third African-American rider to win the Preakness and the first since 1898 when Willie Simms won aboard Sly Fox. George “Spider” Anderson captured the 1889 Preakness with Buddhist. Six African-American riders have previously ridden in the Preakness. The last was Wayne Barrett, who finished eighth in 1985 with Sparrowvon.

Illinois Derby (G3) winner Departing galloped “a spirited” 1 ½ miles in the words of trainer Al Stall Jr. on Friday morning at Churchill Downs.  Owned by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, Departing is scheduled to work Sunday morning at 8:30, walk Monday and then train the next two mornings before shipping to Pimlico on Wednesday.

GoldMark Farm and Whisper Hill Farm’s Mylute galloped 1 ½ miles at Churchill Friday morning. A decision on the Preakness status of the fifth-place Kentucky Derby finisher will be made in the morning.

“He trained well this morning and showed good energy. I was satisfied with what I saw and passed that on to the owners,” trainer Tom Amoss said. “After he trains in the morning, I’ll call the owners at 7 and we will make a decision on the race.”

All three of trainer D. Wayne Lukas’ Preakness hopefuls, Oxbow, Will Take Charge and Titletown Five, galloped early Friday morning at Churchill. Lukas plans to van nine horses to Pimlico on Tuesday with a 3 a.m. departure from Churchill Downs.

The Hall of Fame trainer saddled Oxbow and Will Take Charge for sixth- and eighth-place finishes, respectively, in the Kentucky Derby. Lukas was particularly impressed with Will Take Charge’s effort during a troubled journey.

“You look at the aerial view of the race, and Will Take Charge may have been running the best of all,” Lukas said. “He was moving with Orb and then he got checked twice when Verrazano ducked in and out in front of him.”

Normandy Invasion galloped at Belmont Park Friday morning for trainer Chad Brown. The Tapit colt owned by Rick Porter’s Fox Hill Farms, remains a candidate for the Preakness. Brown said on Sunday morning that the fourth-place finisher in the Derby – who led in the stretch – would not run back in two weeks in the Preakness. However, Brown reconsidered that stance on Monday and decided to wait until this weekend before deciding whether Normandy Invasion would be entered in the Preakness.

Govenor Charlie, Vyjack and Street Spice remained Preakness candidates Friday.

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Derby winner Orb to ship to Baltimore Monday

Posted on 09 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DERBY WINNER ORB PLEASES TRAINER; SCHEDULED TO SHIP TO PIMLICO MONDAY

 

Goldencents Jogs over Pimlico track; Hernandez Set for First Preakness Ride

 

BALTIMORE, 05-09-13—Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s Orb pleased trainer Shug McGaughey during his morning visit to the sloppy track at Belmont Park Thursday. The Kentucky Derby (G1) winner also gave exercise rider Jenn Patterson all the right signs in his preparation for the 138th Preakness Stakes (G1) at Pimlico on May 18.

 

“He jogged three-eighths to a half-mile and galloped a mile. I thought everything was good,” said McGaughey, whose colt had jogged a mile on a sloppy track Wednesday in his first visit to the track since his 2 ½-length victory at Churchill Downs last Saturday. “The track was still sloppy. Jenn said he was kind of bucking and playing and jumping the water puddles on the backstretch. I was pleased with what I saw. His energy level is right where you’d want it to be on Thursday after Saturday.”

 

McGaughey outlined the challenge he faces while preparing Orb for a return to the races in just two weeks.

 

“The first thing we’ve got to do and what we’ve been doing is getting him over his last race – try to get him back on his feet the best we can, get him fresh and happy again,” the Hall of Fame trainer said. “Next week, we’ll get him ready to run again and that’ll hopefully be through the breeze on Monday. We just want to put him back in the game. We don’t need anything fast, just something that puts his mind back on what he’s doing. Then, we’ll get him to Pimlico and get him acclimated. There’s not much else we can do.”

 

McGaughey, who said it was likely that Orb would ship to Pimlico on Monday following his breeze that morning, expressed confidence that his Derby winner was up to the challenge of running back in two weeks.

 

“Day in and day out, with your better horses, you don’t want to run them back in two weeks, because they give you a lot when they run. You’ve got to train them a little bit to get them to run again,” McGaughey said. “There’s no compromise here. You’ve got to do it. You’ve just got to hope you haven’t drained your horse over the winter with prep races and his training, so he can bounce out of a big race like he had on Derby Day. But I think we’ll be fine.”

 

Goldencents, the only Preakness candidate on the Pimlico grounds thus far, is also set for the two-week turnaround following his 17th-place finish in the Kentucky Derby. The son of Into Mischief returned to the track for the first time since the Derby Thursday morning when he jogged once around the Pimlico oval under jockey Kevin Krigger.

 

The Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner was shipped from Kentucky Monday afternoon and arrived at Pimlico early Tuesday morning. The Doug O’Neill-trained colt walked the shedrow Tuesday and Wednesday morning and was given his first bit of exercise for the Preakness by Krigger at 8:30 a.m. Thursday.

 

Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson said that Goldencents will jog and gallop Friday morning and will have a timed workout on Monday.

 

“Basically, this morning was just to have him stretch his legs, get warmed up for tomorrow,” Krigger said. “It was more to feel how good he felt and he felt perfect today. Everything was good. He was smooth, graceful on the track, and relaxed. That’s all the factors you’re looking for.”

 

O’Neill sent 2012 Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another to Pimlico the Monday after the race to prepare for the Preakness, which the colt won. Though Goldencents did not match I’ll Have Another’s result in the Derby, finishing 17th after contesting the early pace, O’Neill is using a similar program to get him to the Preakness.

 

“It was successful last year, so why change it?” Sisterson said.

 

Goldencents, a three-time stakes winner, got his first look at the Pimlico track during the easy jog.

 

“This is one of the first steps training-wise leading up to the Preakness,” Sisterson said. “We just jogged him and we were very happy. There was no sign of stiffness or tightness. His energy level was high. He’s a very happy horse.”

 

Krigger has ridden Goldencents in all seven of his career starts and said the Derby, run on a sloppy, sealed track at Churchill Downs, was an uncharacteristic performance.

 

“The key to him is to have him run his race,” Krigger said. “If you look at the Kentucky Derby, at least to me, that wasn’t the race we expected to see out of him at all. We had a lot of factors in the race that could have been the reason. We’re here trying to regroup, gather him back up and get back on the winning trail.”

 

Sisterson and other members of the O’Neill staff have been enjoying their second visit to Baltimore for the Preakness. The Maryland Jockey Club arranged for them to attend a Baltimore Orioles game against the Kansas City Royals Thursday night.

 

“We said last year that we’d love to get back,” Sisterson said. “We didn’t expect it to be the year after.”

 

As of Thursday, as many as eight Derby starters could make the same quick turnaround at Pimlico. The Al Stall Jr.-trained Departing, who captured the Illinois Derby (G3) at Hawthorne in his last start, will have the luxury of four weeks between starts.

 

Jockey Brian Hernandez Jr., who is looking forward to his first Preakness appearance, recalled his first ride aboard Departing at Fair Grounds last December. Seven weeks after capping off his 27th birthday with a victory in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) on Fort Larned, Hernandez was on a roll at Fair Grounds with four victories from eight mounts.

 

“I had just won on Bind and Al was bragging on this first-time starter in the next race,” Hernandez said. “That was Departing. I had never been on him and he ran huge. He was my fifth winner and the most impressive.”

 

Fast forward nearly five months later and Departing, owned by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, has emerged as one of the top contenders to Kentucky Derby winner Orb in the Preakness.

 

Hernandez has been aboard Departing for all five of his starts, all victories save for a third-place finish in the Louisiana Derby (G2).

 

Following the Louisiana Derby, the Kentucky Derby was ruled out and Departing was pointed to the Illinois Derby (G3), a race he won by 3 ¼ lengths despite breaking from the No. 13 post position.

 

“After the Louisiana Derby, they made the plan to go to the Illinois Derby and then the Preakness,” Hernandez said. “I can’t be disappointed in missing the Derby. We have a chance to upset Orb and the Preakness is not a bad race to run in.”

 

“After this meet was over, I used to ride at Delaware Park and I have ridden some at Laurel but never at Pimlico,” Hernandez said. “I am going to go over a day early and ride a horse for Al (Tread in the Miss Preakness Stakes).”

 

Departing continued his Preakness preparations Thursday morning at Churchill Downs, galloping two miles over a fast track under Trina Pasckvale.

 

“We changed it up a little bit this morning, but we had the luxury to do that,” Stall said of a break in the regular routine of galloping 1 ½ miles.

 

With a 60-percent chance of rain in the forecast for Friday, Stall said he plans to give Departing his final work for the Preakness at Churchill on Sunday morning.

 

GoldMark Farm and Whisper Hill Farm’s Mylute jogged in the mile chute and then galloped 1 ½ miles at Churchill Downs for trainer Tom Amoss.

 

Amoss said a decision on the fifth-place Kentucky Derby finisher’s status for the Preakness would be made after training Saturday. If Mylute is a go for Baltimore, he would represent a second Preakness starter for Amoss, who saddled Hot Wells for a fourth-place finish behind Real Quiet in 1998.

 

Trainer D. Wayne Lukas sent all three of his Preakness candidates to the track at Churchill Thursday morning. Oxbow and Will Take Charge, the sixth- and eighth-place Derby finishers, respectively, galloped 1 ½ miles. Titletown Five jogged twice around the track.

 

Bob Baffert-trained Govenor Charlie also jogged at Churchill.

 

On the morning after his arrival at Monmouth Park from Churchill Downs, Itsmyluckyday went to the track for a two-mile jog Thursday morning.

 

“It was kind of a nasty morning and since we just arrived yesterday from Churchill we just jogged him,” said Frankie Perez, assistant to trainer Eddie Plesa Jr., who was enroute from South Florida to New Jersey. ”From a scale from one to 10, he was a 10.”

 

The Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) winner, who finished a disappointing 15th in the Kentucky Derby, will be ridden for the first time by Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez in the Preakness.

 

Normandy Invasion jogged in the rain at Belmont Park for a second day Thursday. Trainer Chad Brown said that the fourth-place finisher in the Derby is 50-50 for the Preakness. He expects to make a decision over the weekend after he has had a chance to watch the Tapit colt gallop.

 

Vyjack remains a candidate for the Preakness, but trainer Rudy Rodriguez said Thursday that no decision has been made on whether Pick Six Racing’s gelding will be entered. Due to the wet weather in New York this week, Rodriguez has not been able to do very much with the gelding since he returned from Kentucky after finishing 18th in the Derby.

 

“We’ve been babying him,” Rodriguez said. “I would like to gallop him and see what’s going on.”

 

Rodriguez said that after he has the opportunity to watch Vyjack gallop a couple days, he will talk about the Preakness with owner David Wilkenfeld.

 

“I’m just going to wait and make my decision and then tell the owner what is going on,” he said. “So far, everything is good. I have to talk with the owner first and see what he wants to do.”

Trainer Greg Geier said Thursday that he will make a decision on running James Tafel’s Street Spice in the Preakness after he breezes the colt Saturday morning in Chicago. Tafel bred and owned 2007 Kentucky Derby winner Street Sense, who is the sire of Street Spice. Geier trains eight horses for Tafel.

 

NEARLY 500 HORSES NOMINATED TO PREAKNESS WEEKEND STAKES

While the Preakness is rightfully the centerpiece of the Pimlico spring meeting, sixteen other stakes (six graded) for thoroughbreds will provide a weekend full of excitement for racing fans. A total of 499 horses were nominated to those added-money races.

The $500,000 Black-Eyed Susan Stakes (G2) and $300,000 Pimlico Special (G3) headline the Friday, May 17 card that features six other stakes races. Thirty-one three-year-old fillies were nominated to the Black-Eyed Susan, including Sagamore Farms Walkwithapurpose, who won a pair of stakes races at Laurel Park this winter. Thirty runners were nominated to the Pimlico Special, including Maryland-bred Richard’s Kid, who has earned $2.3 million and won three Grade 1 races.

Thirty-five fillies were nominated to the $100,000 Miss Preakness Stakes. Thirty-two horses were nominated to the $100,000 Jim McKay Turf Sprint, including 15-time stakes winner Ben’s Cat. Thirty-five female turf specialists were nominated to the $100,000 The Very One Stakes, while twenty-six were nominated to the $100,000 Skipat Stakes. Thirty-six three-year-old fillies were nominated to the $100,000 Hilltop Stakes and another sixteen to the $40,000 Kattegat’s Pride Starter Handicap for Maryland-breds.

The Pimlico racing office will draw the May 17 card on Sunday afternoon.

The Saturday, May 18 Preakness undercard features eight added money races, including four graded. Thirty-six top grass specialists were entered in the $300,000 Dixie Stakes (G2). Thirty-two fillies and mares were nominated to the $150,000 Gallorette Handicap (G3). The $150,000 Maryland Sprint Handicap (G3) features forty-one nominations. Twenty-five fillies and mares were nominated to the $150,000 Allaire duPont Distaff (G3). Thirty-three three-year-old sprinters were nominated to the $100,000 Chick Lang. Forty-four turf specialists were nominated to the $100,000 James Murphy. Twenty-eight two-year olds were nominated to the $75,000 Rollicking Stakes. There were nineteen Maryland-breds on the list for the $40,000 Deputed Testamony Starter Handicap.

The Pimlico racing office will draw the May 18 card on Wednesday, May 15.

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Derby winner Orb works at Belmont in preparation for Preakness

Posted on 08 May 2013 by WNST Staff

DERBY WINNER ORB RETURNS TO RACETRACK TO PREP FOR PREAKNESS STAKES

 

Velazquez to Ride Itsmyluckyday; Smith Gains Mount on Will Take Charge; Leparoux Aboard Titletown Five

 

BALTIMORE, 05-08-13 – On a rainy Wednesday morning at Belmont Park, Stuart Janney III and Phipps Stable’s Orb went to the racetrack for the first time since his Kentucky Derby victory last Saturday, jogging a mile under exercise rider Jenn Patterson in preparation for the Preakness Stakes on May 18.

 

“The weather was terrible, so instead of galloping, he just jogged,” trainer Shug McGaughey said. “It was a pretty miserable morning when he went out. But Jenn said he was feeling good and moving good. All signs are good.”

 

Although plans changed Wednesday due to the muddy track, McGaughey said Orb will gallop Thursday morning, rain or shine, and is likely to breeze on Monday before shipping to Pimlico Race Course on Tuesday.

 

After adding a Kentucky Derby victory to his Hall of Fame resume, McGaughey has been somewhat overwhelmed by the avalanche of congratulations and tributes to his consummate horsemanship.

 

“It’s hugely appreciated. I appreciated the reception we got in Louisville. What’s happened after the Derby is absolutely mind-boggling and very, very flattering for me,” McGaughey said. “The phone calls, the emails, the newspaper articles have just been absolutely wonderful. Nobody knows how much how I appreciate this reception.”

 

McGaughey has long been respected for his low-key, no-nonsense approach to training thoroughbreds.

 

“I try to conduct myself in the right way and try to run my stable in the best possible way. I try to surround myself with good people, who played a role in this,” he said. “I think that people have appreciated that. I had no idea that a horse race could bring that out.”

 

Itsmyluckyday, who arrived at Monmouth Park from Churchill Downs Wednesday morning, will have a new rider for the Preakness. Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez will replace Elvis Trujillo aboard the Gulfstream Park Derby and Holy Bull (G3) winner, who finished 15th in the Kentucky Derby.

 

“We had an opportunity to ride John Velazquez. No slight to Elvis Trujillo. Elvis did a fantastic job, no question. The Derby was what the Derby was. It was a racetrack that was unfavorable to our horse,” trainer Eddie Plesa Jr. said. “But with John being open, we just felt that we had to take advantage of having one of the very top riders in the country.”

 

The son of Lawyer Ron had returned to the racetrack Tuesday morning at Churchill Downs, where he jogged two miles.

 

Five-time Preakness-winning trainer D. Wayne Lukas has firmed up the jockey assignments for his three Preakness candidates. He reported Wednesday morning that Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith will replace Jon Court aboard Will Take Charge, while Julien Leparoux will have the mount aboard Titletown Five and Gary Stevens will retain the mount on Oxbow.

 

Smith, 47, has competed in the Preakness 14 times since 1984. He picked up his lone win on Prairie Bayou in 1993 and has two seconds on his resume: Mine That Bird in 2009 and Bodemeister in 2012. Leparoux has been blanked with five Preakness mounts, including 2008 second-place finisher Macho Again. Stevens has ridden two Preakness winners, Silver Charm (1997) and Point Given (2001), from 16 mounts.

 

Titletown Five, who finished fourth in the Derby Trial (G3), walked the shedrow at Churchill Downs Wednesday following his half-mile work of: 47 3/5 on Tuesday. The son of Tiznow is owned in partnership by Lukas, Pro Football Hall of Famers Paul Hornung and Willie Davis, plus Ed Martin, David Miller and Margaret Shade.

 

Lukas sent Calumet Farm’s Oxbow and Willis Horton’s Will Take Charge to the track for the first time Wednesday since their respective sixth- and eighth-place finishes in the Kentucky Derby.

 

“I was going to walk them another day, but I had them out on the lawn yesterday about 3 and they were so disruptive, I was afraid they were going to hurt themselves,” Lukas said. “I had to bring them out today.”

 

Oxbow and Will Take Charge both jogged twice around the Churchill track.

 

Trainer Doug O’Neill’s Santa Anita Derby (G1) winner Goldencents walked the shedrow at his barn at Pimlico for 30 minutes Wednesday morning. He will return to the track at 8:30 Thursday morning for the first time since finishing 17th in the Kentucky Derby last Saturday.

 

Goldencents shipped from Kentucky Monday and was the first Preakness candidate to arrive at Pimlico.

 

“He’s great. He’s settled in really well,” said assistant trainer Jack Sisterson. “We’re happy with him.”

 

Eleven other horses from O’Neill’s stable traveled overnight from Kentucky and arrived at Pimlico at 4 a.m. Wednesday. Some of them will compete at Pimlico.

 

“It depends how they train over the track,” Sisterson said. “We expect to run a few, but we’re going to make sure that they’re all 100 percent before we make a decision. They all shipped in well.”

 

Jockey Kevin Krigger, who will be aboard Goldencents when he goes out to jog Thursday, has a mount on Sunday’s program at Pimlico.

 

GoldMark Farm and Whisper Hill Farm’s fifth-place Kentucky Derby finisher Mylute returned to the track for the first time since the Run for the Roses with an easy jog early Wednesday morning at Churchill.

 

“Everything was fine this morning,” trainer Tom Amoss said. “He will gallop the rest of the week and the partnership will get together Saturday after training and make a decision on the Preakness.”

 

Mike Pegram’s Governor Charlie came out of his work on Tuesday in fine shape and remains a prospect for the Preakness, Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert said Wednesday morning.

 

The Midnight Lute colt completed six furlongs on 1:11 2/5 at Churchill Downs. Following his routine, Baffert will fly in from California and watch the colt breeze before making the call on whether to enter the Preakness.

 

“He’s going to work Sunday or Monday and then I’ll decide,” Baffert said. “He worked really well. He’s going to have to convince me when he works again.”

Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider’s Departing galloped 1 ½ miles on a fast track early Wednesday at Churchill Downs. Trained by Al Stall Jr., the Illinois Derby (G3) winner is scheduled to work Saturday or Sunday depending on weather. Friday’s forecast in Louisville is for scattered thunderstorms with a 50 percent chance of rain and Saturday’s outlook is for a few showers and a 30 percent chance of rain.

 

Normandy Invasion, fourth in the Kentucky Derby, Vyjack, 18th in the Derby, and Street Spice remain candidates for the Middle Jewel of the Triple Crown.

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