Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) winner Orb arrived at trainer Shug McGaughey's barn at Saratoga Race Course mid-afternoon Aug. 11 after a 5 1/2-hour van ride from the Fair Hill Training Center near Elkton, Md.
The van carrying Orb left Fair Hill at 10:17 a.m. ET and pulled up to the ramp outside the Hall of Fame trainer's barn at 3:46 p.m. Showing good energy, the Malibu Moon colt was led out by groom Crisanto Maldonado at 3:51 p.m. and walked the shedrow before being led to his stall and then out to graze.
"He's a good shipper. I liked the way he came off the van," said McGaughey, who was joined at the barn by Ogden "Dinny" Phipps, who co-owns Orb with Stuart Janney III. "I think he's gotten bigger."
McGaughey stood close by as Maldonado grazed Orb outside the barn. Orb had been at Fair Hill since June 9, and had six works there, including a five-furlong breeze in :59.70 Aug. 10.
"They had to bring him in yesterday (from grazing after the work), he was feeling so good," McGaughey said.
Orb will walk under tack the morning of Aug. 12, said the trainer, then gallop as he continues to train toward the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I) Aug. 24.
This year, Orb has four wins in six starts, including the Besilu Stables Florida Derby (gr. I) and Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth (gr. II). He was fourth in the Preakness (gr. I) and third last time out in the June 8 Belmont Stakes (gr. I).
"So far, so good," McGaughey said. "I think my experiment has worked up to now, if we can just manage not to mess him up in the next two weeks."