- Road to the Kentucky Derby
- Racing & Wagering
Hero of Order to run in Blue Grass
Raut LLC's Hero of Order, the 109-1 winner of the Grade 2 Louisiana Derby on April 1 at Fair Grounds, on Monday morning joined the probable cast for Saturday's 88th running of the Grade 1, $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland.
"If he is feeling good, run him," trainer Gennadi Dorochenko said of Hero of Order, a colt by Sharp Humor who will be ridden by Eddie Martin Jr.
Dorochenko is expected to have a second runner in the Blue Grass in Olympia Star Inc.'s Russian Greek, a recent transfer from the barn of Hall of Famer Jerry Hollendorfer. No rider has been confirmed for Russian Greek.
While Hero of Order was entering the Blue Grass picture, Dogwood Stable's Raconteur was exiting. Trainer Todd Pletcher texted Keeneland Racing Secretary Ben Huffman that Raconteur may be routed to Saturday's Grade 1 Arkansas Derby, but definitely would not run in the Blue Grass.
Pletcher, who won the Blue Grass in 2005 with Bandini and 2008 with Monba, still will be represented in this year's renewal by Starlight Racing's Heavy Breathing, third in the Grade 3 Spiral in his most recent start on March 24. Heavy Breathing is scheduled to ship to Keeneland on Tuesday from Palm Meadows, where he worked a half-mile in :48 3/5 on Sunday. Pletcher texted Huffman that Corey Lanerie probably would have the mount.
Two prospective Blue Grass runners are scheduled to arrive at Keeneland on Tuesday afternoon from California: Craig Stables and Donkey Island Racing's Holy Candy and Arnold Zetcher's Midnight Crooner. Joel Rosario has the mount on Holy Candy and Garrett Gomez the call on Midnight Crooner.
The Bob Baffert-trained Midnight Crooner, who exits a third in the grassy Pasadena Stakes, worked a half-mile in :48 1/5 over Santa Anita's fast main track on Monday.
In other Blue Grass developments, the race status of MarchFore Thoroughbreds' Adirondack King remained in question.
"I am going to talk today with the owners, but it may be the Lexington (Grade 3 on April 21) for him," trainer John Servis said after the colt jogged Monday morning under Juan David.
Adirondack had worked five furlongs in :59 4/5 on Saturday in company with Ill Conceived, who was injured in the work.
"Ill Conceived will miss the Lexington," Servis said. "It looks like he jammed a high suspensory and since he is not going to the (Kentucky) Derby, I am not going to rush him."
Trainer Ken McPeek said the decision of whether to race Golden Ticket in the Blue Grass or the Lexington would be made after Dan Fuchs of owner Magic City Thoroughbred Partners arrives in Lexington later Monday.
JEOG Racing LLC's Scatman, second in the second division of the Grade 3 Southwest and third in the Grade 2 Rebel in his past two starts, remains under consideration for the Blue Grass or the Lexington, trainer Mike Lauer told a Keeneland representative. Shaun Bridgmohan would have the mount.
Grade 2-placed Ever So Lucky is set to work at Keeneland Tuesday about 8 a.m. (EDT). Jockey Julien Leparoux will be aboard the Augustin Stable colt, who is trained by Hall of Famer Jonathan Sheppard.
With assistant Barry Wiseman in the saddle Monday, Ever So Lucky walked through the paddock and stood in the starting gate before galloping 1 1/2 miles.
Team Valor International's Howe Great took 1 1/2 laps over the Keeneland Training Track with assistant Heather Craig aboard, and Ken and Sarah Ramsey's Politicallycorrect galloped 1 1/2 miles for trainer Wesley Ward.
Keeneland will host a breakfast prior to the post position draw for the Blue Grass on Wednesday morning, both taking place in the Sales Pavilion's Limestone Cafe. The breakfast begins at 10 a.m., with the post position draw to follow at 11:30 a.m. The draw will be hosted by Tom Leach and carried live on TVG.