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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Final Preparations Looming


By Dick Downey
The Downey Profile

With Animal Kingdom perhaps shipping to Belmont Park and Shackleford working at the track on Saturday, maybe interest in the race will begin to ramp up.

Barry Irwin told DRF.com that Saturday is the probable ship date for Animal Kingdom, who would breeze at the track on Monday. Shackleford is set to breeze either Saturday or Sunday.

Connections of both horses want them to get used to the surface of the track. Shackleford's connections have been more circumspect about entering the race, saying that they will wait for the breeze to take place before making a final decision. Meanwhile, Animal Kingdom's people are all in.

Shackleford galloped 1 1/2 mile at at the track today.

“He’s acting good. He jogged one day, and galloped one day, but so far, so good.,” trainer Dale Romans told DRF.co. Shackleford arrived in New York Monday morning.

Trainer Graham Motion doesn't want to work Animal Kingdom on an off track. The weather forecast for Sunday and Monday is favorable, with chances of rain ranging from 20% to 30%.

Interest in the Belmont Stakes has not been at a high level in the media this week, with Google searches turning up little in the way of mainstream media coverage, even in the New York area. Look for interest to rise when the winners of the first two legs of the Triple Crown breeze at Belmont.

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