Originally written on isportsweb.com  |  Last updated 8/26/14
With the 2013 Kentucky Derby behind us, and with us being some five days away from Orb trying to capture Horse Racing’s second leg of the 2013 Triple Crown, the 2013 Preakness Stakes, it’s time to update the Countdown. Before we take a look at the prospective field, first let’s take a look at who will NOT be running. At this writing, none of the five horses entered by Todd Pletcher in the Kentucky Derby will run back in the Preakness. Revolutionary (3rd in the Derby), Charming Kitten (9th), Overanalyze (11th), Palace Malice (12th), and Verrazano (14th) we all be watching from the sidelines. The connections of long-shot Derby runner up Golden Soul will pass as well with the Belmont Stakes as his primary goal. You can also delete Normandy Invasion from running as also. Owner Rick Porter and trainer Chad Brown announced yesterday (Sunday) that they will skip the remaining Triple Crown races in favor of a summer schedule. “He’s training well and eating well,” Porter said of the fourth-place Derby finisher. “Everything is fine with the horse. The two weeks is a little quick coming back. He needs to put some weight back on, so we decided to wait.” Porter said the Jim Dandy Stakes (July 27 at Saratoga) or the Haskell Invitational (July 28 at MonmouthPark) followed by the Travers Stakes (Aug. 24) is a likely schedule. “Mr. Porter and I decided to pass on the Preakness with Normandy Invasion and focus on the summer campaign with him,” Brown added. All that being, it appears as though about only nine or ten will show up in Baltimore to challenge Orb in the Preakness.   They include (In alphabetical order) *Departing- this stretch runner, and winner of the recent Illinois Derby, worked a half mile in :50.4 yesterday (Sunday) morning at Churchill Downs. The fractions of work were :13 1/5, :25 2/5, :38 1/5 and he galloped out five furlongs in 1:03 4/5. “I wanted him to go a little slower the first part than the second part, and he hit right on what we were looking for,” trainer Al Stall said. “He did enough to get the day off tomorrow. He is a gelding and doesn’t carry a lot of weight. He had galloped two miles on Thursday and a spirited mile and half Friday.” Departing is scheduled to walk May 13 and then train May 14 & 15 before shipping to Pimlico this Wednesday.     Departing, shown here winning the Illnois Derby, will be a dangerous new shooter in the Preakness *Goldencents- one of the bigger disappointments in the Derby (finished 17th and scored a measly 32 Beyer Speed Figure), this colt will try to bounce back in the Preakness sans a work between the two races. “It was never certain that he was going to work; it was kind of tentative,” said assistant trainer to Doug O’Neill, Jack Sisterson, who accompanied Goldencents to Pimlico the week after the Derby. “We never worked I’ll Have Another so we’re going to stay on that schedule.” Goldencents has been galloping every morning at Pimlico since May 10. “He’s getting enough out of his training where he doesn’t need to work.” Sisterson said “He’s doing very well.”   *Govenor Charlie- will come into this race off just three career races with his last being a five length romp in the Sunland Park Derby for trainer Bob Baffert.   *Heat Press- was second in the Federico Tesio Stakes at Pimlico and will be a new shooter in the Preakness as he did not run in the Derby   *Itsmyluckyday- worked a half-mile at MonmouthPark in :47 1/5 between the third and fourth races yesterday (Sunday) as he prepares Preakness. “Perfect. He did just what I wanted,” said trainer Eddie Plesa Jr.”I caught him galloping out in :59 and change. I couldn’t have asked for it to work out any better.” “He did it easy, he did it all on his own.” Plesa Jr. added “I’m quite happy.”     *Mylute- closed well to be a solid fifth in the Derby might take another shot at Orb come Saturday. “No decision has been made about the Preakness,” trainer Thomas Amoss said. “He is doing well, has good energy and probably will go back to the track Wednesday and have a very light day.”   *Orb- the obvious three year old male division leader based on his wins in the Fountain of Youth, The Florida Derby and his sensational Kentucky Derby is “doing fine” according to trainer Shug McGaughey. This stretch running son of Malibu Moon galloped 1 ½ miles over a sloppy BelmontPark on Sunday morning and is scheduled to breeze this (Monday) morning provided the track dries out a bit. “I think it will be fine,” trainer Shug McGaughey said in regard to the racing surface drying out. “The sun is out, there’s no humidity, and the wind is picking up.”   2013 Kentucky Derby winner Orb is scheduled to breeze this (Monday) morning at Belmont Park *Oxbow- will be one of now three horses entered in the Preakness for trainer D. Wayne Lukas. He (and his stable-mates) walked the shedrow last week before returning to the track for a gallop this past Thursday. *Titletown Five- partly owned by football great Paul Hornung, a half mile work in :47.3 convinced his connections to go ahead and enter him. “We flirted with the idea of going into the Kentucky Derby and late additions bumped us from that,” trainer D. Wayne Lukas said. “He has been doing so well lately and today just highlighted that. It was a brilliant work and a great gallop out. I just thought that it was a good spot maybe to try him. He’s an exceptional horse. He’s very talented with good tactical speed. He’ll make some noise there.”   *Will Take Charge- is the third part of the Lukas entries. (See Oxbow’s comments)   *Vyjack- has been added to the list of possible candidates for the Preakness Stakes, but I have to tell you, I’m a little skeptical being he had a lung infection some 3 weeks ago. Lung infections can be tricky and can be stubborn at times to correct. If he is right however, this is one talented and good looking gelding.  Thanks for reading… To receive an email each time a new Horse Racing article is published, fill out the Email Notification Form    
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