Wilko to Remain in U. S., Point Toward Derby

Wilko to Remain in U. S., Point Toward Derby
Photo: Jeff Snyder
Breeders' Cup Juvenile winner Wilko will remain in the U. S.
Wilko, upset winner of Saturday's Bessemer Trust Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) in his first North American start, will remain in the U. S. and be trained by Craig Dollase during a 3-year-old campaign aimed at the 2005 Kentucky Derby (gr. I).

"My part of the job is done," trainer Jeremy Noseda said during Sunday's post-Breeders' Cup breakfast at Lone Star Park. "He was sent to Craig Dollase this morning."

Owned by J. Paul Reddam and Susan Roy, Wilko had won two of 10 starts, both in listed stakes, in Great Britain before coming to the U. S. for Saturday's Juvenile.

One of two winners on the Breeders' Cup card sired by Awesome Again   (the other was Ghostzapper, winner of the Breeders' Cup Classic – Powered by Dodge, gr. I), Wilko had trained successfully in England on the all-weather Polytrack surface at Newmarket, Noseda said of his reasons for believing the 2-year-old colt would do well on dirt tracks after having competed only on the grass.

Ridden by Frankie Dettori, Wilko stalked the pace before defeating Afleet Alex by three-quarters of a length.

"He had always worked well on the artificial surface at Newmarket, but we didn't expect what happened yesterday. I thought third position would have been nice, so what happened was a bonus," the trainer said. "We took a chance and it just worked out. He is just a tough, hard-knocking horse."

Consisting of polypropylene fibers, recycled rubber, and silica sand covered in a wax coating, the same Polytrack surface is being used in the U. S. on a experimental basis at the Keeneland training track.

"It has been a big help to us in England," Noseda said of Polytrack. "Horses train well over it and stay sound."

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