Fair Grounds Race Course

Second Generation Kentucky Derby Winners

Breeding has since changed. Racing in general has altered its course with updated factors that now play into training a champion as well. Even as the majority of exceptional horses that were gifted 3-yr-olds, as well as sires, are not so common, the chances of it occurring again are here.

This weekend the Road to the 2014 Kentucky Derby takes us to the Fair Grounds in New Orleans, Louisiana for the G3 LeComte Stakes. Here you’ll find Smarty’s Echo, by 2004 Kentucky Derby winner Smarty Jones, racing for the chance to qualify for the Kentucky Derby and a shot at becoming the next Father, Son team to accomplish the rare but thrilling achievement.

Since the inaugural Kentucky Derby in 1875 a total of 13 winners reached the pinnacle of racing just like their sire had done before. The last time the son of Kentucky Derby winner also wore the roses was in 1996. It wasGrindstone, by Unbridled, that stuck his nose in front of a hard charging Cavonnier and rode off into the sunset. The Kentucky Derby would be Grindstone’s final race as he was retired shortly thereafter. However, the champion owned and bred by Overbrook Farm will always be remembered for joining this elusive club.

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Race Recap: Pants on Fire Burns in Louisiana

Burning Up the Stretch

Despite a thrilling stretch duel, the favorite Mucho Macho Man was unable to put away Pants on Fire and finished a beaten third behind Pants on Fire and Nehro.  The Louisiana Derby victor took home $600,000 for the win and as long as he comes out of the race in good shape, he will be represented in Kentucky.

Pants on Fire was originally included in the entry to make sure that the race had an honest pace for the closer and barn’s #1 contender Nacho Business; however, there was more to his name than anyone knew.  He took a nice position behind the early leader Liondrive and coasted until the far turn.  Around the bend, followed closely by Mucho Macho Man and Nehro, he moved past Liondrive and pushed into another gear.  The three battled until M3 gave way and Pants on Fire held for a neck over Nehro.  Rallying from dead last and closing the final 3 furlongs in :35 3/5 was the late runner Elite Alex (one of these days Calvin Borel is going to time it correctly on this horse and have a nice payday).

1 – 1A Pants on Fire  $14.60   $7.80   $4.80

2 – 2 Nehro                                        $31.60   $11.40

3 – 4 Mucho Macho Man                                 $2.80

$2 Exacta – 1A-2 – $459, 2$ Trifecta – 1A-2-4 – $1785.40

Also Rans: Elite Alex, Machen, Wilkinson, Left, Nacho Business, Majestic Harbor, Le Mans, Mavericking, and Liondrive.

Congrats to the owners, winning trainer Kelly Breen and winning jockey Rosie Napravnik.

Mucho Macho Man did have an excuse as he lost a shoe breaking out of the gate.  It may or may not have cost him the race but it surely influenced his running.  M3 and Pants on Fire will train up to the Kentucky Derby on May 7th.

Next Week: The Florida Derby

This likely will be the strongest and deepest Derby prep this year.  In addition to many new challengers, it will feature Top 10 contenders Soldat, To Honor and Serve, Dialed In and Stay Thirsty.  Check back later this week for the preview.

Written By: Fundanichols