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Kentucky Derby and Horse Racing at The Downey Profile®

Wednesday Morning's Derby Trail Notes


Highlights from updates to our Looking Good, Worth Watching and Just In Case pages. Refer to those pages for details.

The owners of ARE YOU KIDDING ME (unlisted) think he could be a Kentucky Derby horse, so “the best thing to do is to run him in the Florida Derby,” trainer Roger Attfield told DRF.com. “I thought we might not get into the Spiral or Louisiana Derby if they oversubscribed. He’s got to show his mettle. If he runs really well, and it looks like he should go on another step in that direction, fine. If not, we’ll go in a different direction.”

CHANNEL ISLE (Just In Case) might be pointed to turf. His next start could come in the Transylvania at Keeneland on opening day, April 5.

“Some people nominate all their horses to the Triple Crown right away, but we don’t do that,” said trainer Al Stall, Jr. of DEPARTING and SUNBEAN (both Worth Watching). “We waited until we thought these two horses were ready to take the next step and now we think they are ready to do that. Everything is looking good for both our horses on Saturday, so we’ll keep our fingers crossed.”

“Some people have said we might be biting off a little more than we can chew but our colt is coming up to this race Saturday the right way,” said trainer Bobby Barnett of HIP FOUR SIXTYNINE (Just In Case). “This colt looked very good breaking his maiden last time, and in the only two-turn race he’s ever run in so far, he got absolutely hammered and lost all chance.”

“It was a matter of him finding his niche,” Eddie Plesa, Jr. said of ITSMYLUCKYDAY (Looking Good). “I was waiting for the distance races all along. Did he far exceed anything that I thought? Absolutely. But I did expect him to be a distance horse.”

“Like I said after the Fountain of Youth, I wake up every morning thinking of winning the Kentucky Derby. I wish I’d won it a long time ago so I wouldn’t have to worry about it anymore,” Shug McGaughey, trainer of ORB (Looking Good), said. “The reason I don’t get Derby Fever is that I want to take the right horse.”

“Last time from an inside post (in the Holy Bull), we felt like we had to commit to getting some position early on and we ended up on the lead," Todd Pletcher said of SHANGHAI BOBBY (Looking Good). "We were kind of pressed by Clearly Now, who came back to win the Hutcheson, and Itsmyluckyday got sort of the garden trip. He was right there stalking us the whole way, so maybe if there’s a post position change, we can swap positions with him."

“You look at his pedigree, on the bottom side, it would suggest he’d have distance limitations,” owner Jack Wolf said of 'Bobby'. “Having said that, the type of heart and determination this horse has shown and the way he’s galloped out – especially the way he galloped out after his last race – I’m willing to give this a shot.”

Mike Smith will ride WAR ACADEMY (Worth Watching) for Bob Baffert in the Grade I Arkansas Derby, and Gary Stevens will replace Smith on OXBOW (Looking Good). War Academy worked yesterday for the first time since his March 15 allowance win, four in :47.60 (2/20) at SA.

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