Smooth Air Headed to Pa. Derby
Updated: Tuesday, August 19, 2008 2:06 PM
Posted: Monday, August 18, 2008 1:45 PM
Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt
Smooth Air, during training prior to the Kentucky Derby (gr. I), will run in the Pennsylvania Derby (gr. II) Sept. 1. Order This Photo
Mount Joy Stables’ Smooth Air, who has been sidelined with foot problems since his impressive victory in the Ohio Derby (gr. II) May 31, is being pointed toward the $1-million Pennsylvania Derby (gr. II) Sept. 1, said trainer Bennie Stutts.
Smooth Air won the Ohio Derby by four lengths, defeating Cherokee Artist and Z Fortune. Previously, he had scored in the Hutcheson Stakes (gr. II) and was second to Big Brown in the Florida Derby (gr. I).
The Florida-bred son of Smooth Jazz has been working steadily at his home base at Calder, and most recently drilled six furlongs in 1:12 2/5 on Aug. 17. This followed works at seven furlongs and a mile.
“He’s back on the track he loves,” Stutts said. “We had been stabled at Arlington Park and were preparing to run in the Iowa Derby (gr. III), but he came down with a very sore heel quarter and we had to put glue-on shoes on him.
“He’s scheduled to fly Fed Ex to Philadelphia on Aug. 27 and we’ll get him ready for the Pennsylvania Derby.”
Three others who likely are headed to Philly Park for the nine-furlong race are Court Vision, beaten a nose in the $750,000 Virginia Derby (gr. IIIT) in his last start; Tiz Now Tiz Then, winner of the Iowa Derby and third in the Jim Dandy Stakes (gr. II) in his most recent start, and either Long Branch winner Truth Rules or Haskell runner-up Coal Play from the Nick Zito stable.
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