By Dick Downey
General a Rod will make his next start in the Florida Derby, according to Gulfstream Park and trainer Mike Maker. The trainer also revealed Vicar's in Trouble is in Florida now.
Maker said General a Rod will have his first work since his narrow defeat in the Fountain of Youth Stakes on Saturday at Gulfstream Park.
“He’s doing fine. We just want a slow, easy half-mile,” Maker said. “Everything’s on go for the Florida Derby. The timing is good, and he obviously likes the track.”
Maker said he had considered several options for the Roman Ruler colt before settling on the Florida Derby.
“Everything was in play,” Maker said. “There were pros and cons that weighed into it, but he’s right here, he can run right out of his own stall, and he’s run well here.”
General a Rod has had a different jockey in each of his four career starts, including Joel Rosario in the Gulfstream Park Derby and Javier Castellano in the Fountain of Youth. Rosario rode Top Billing in the Fountain of Youth, and Castellano has been the regular rider for Constitution. It remains uncertain who will be aboard General a Rod.
“I’m still waiting to hear on that,” Maker said.
Vicar's in Trouble Moved to Gulfstream
LeComte winner Vicar’s in Trouble, who had been stabled with Maker’s string at Fair Grounds, was shipped to Gulfstream Park last week. Vicar's in Trouble ran third from post 14 in the Risen Star on Feb. 22.
“He’s doing well,” Maker said. “He had a bad post position, but I still think he ran well. I’m still undecided on his next start.”