By Dick Downey
Trainer Bob Baffert told the Churchill Downs officials Tuesday afternoon that Super Ninety Nine and Den’s Legacy will not run in the Kentucky Derby.
The two colts were numbers 18 and 20, respectively, on the Derby points leaderboard. Falling Sky is now number 18, Charming Kitten is 19, Winning Cause is 20, Code West is 21, Tiz a Minister is 22 and Golden Soul is 23.
“After speaking with my owners, we’ve decided not to run Super Ninety Nine and Den’s Legacy in the Kentucky Derby,” Baffert said. “Based on their recent form, we just didn’t feel they’d be competitive enough to win. They’re both good horses, but we’ll look for something else down the road. We realize there are some other horses on the ‘bubble’ with the hope of running, and we wanted to get this information out as soon as possible to make sure they’d have every opportunity to run and prepare for a start in the Derby.”
After winning Oaklawn Park’s Grade III Southwest Stakes by 11 1/4 lengths in February, Super Ninety Nine finished fifth in the Grade II Rebel and a distant third in the Santa Anita Derby.
Den’s Legacy, a runner-up in the Grade III Sham and Grade II Robert Lewis, finished sixth in the Grade I Arkansas Derby.
Baffert still has Govenor Charlie on tap for the Derby -- and possibly Code West and Power Broker. All three of those are at Churchill Downs. The two defectors are at Santa Anita and have been scheduled to work there tomorrow.
“As for Code West and Power Broker, we haven’t made any decisions yet about their Derby status,” Baffert said. “I’ll be in Saturday, and I want to watch them train over the track and see what happens. They’ll work again Sunday or Monday, but I won’t make final decisions about those two until I have to.”
Baffert also reported that Fiftyshadesofhay won’t run in the $1 million Kentucky Oaks on Friday, May 3. He said she could go in either the Eight Belles or the Grade II Black-Eyed Susan.