Xchanger, winner of the April 21 Federico Stakes (gr. II), will not run in Saturday’s Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), trainer Mark Shuman said May 1.
“In the best interest of the horse and us, we’ve decided to look at the Preakness (gr. I),” Shuman said. “I’ve said all along that the reason we would go to the Derby is if the horse sold to someone who was buying him to go there. There were some offers and a substantial amount of money involved, and if we hadn’t explored all of our options, we would have been crazy. But it wouldn’t be fair to the horse or the new owners to rush in there. We’re all very comfortable with the decision.”
The son of Exchange Rate is still owned by Dominic Zannini, Joe Masone, and Shuman. He will remain at Fair Hill Training Center under Shuman’s care.
Xchanger has won three of eight starts, with two thirds, while earning $291,990. In addition to the Federico Tesio, he won the 2006 Sapling Stakes (gr. III) at Monmouth Park. His third-place finishes came in the Nashua Stakes (gr. III) at Aqueduct and the Delta Jackpot at Delta Downs.
With the defection of Xchanger and the earlier defection of Merv Griffin’s Cobalt Blue, the Bill Kaplan-trained Imawildandcrazyguy imoves to 20th on the graded earnings list with $104,000. The son of Wild Event comes off a sixth-place finish in the Florida Derby (gr. I) and previously increased his earnings with a second-place finish in the Louisiana Derby (gr. II) and the Risen Star Stakes (gr. III)