Bodemeister in, Hansen out, Daddy Nose Best possible for Preakness
Baffert liked how Bodemeister bounced out of the race.
"He cooled out quickly and started to eat right after the race," Baffert said. "I was worried that he might be wiped out and just stay in the back of his stall for three days and sulk, but he never did."
Baffert said that Bodemeister would not have a work before the Preakness.
"I didn't work (2010 Preakness winner) Lookin at Lucky after the Derby," Baffert said. "If a horse didn't really run or didn't show up in the Derby, I might breeze them to see if I was missing something."
Bodemeister entered the Kentucky Derby off a 9 1/2-length victory in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby when he was ridden for the first time by Smith.
"He deserves it (a shot at the Preakness)," Baffert said of Bodemeister. "He won the Arkansas Derby and then came back in three weeks and ran a great race. He looks good and I don't see why he can't run another one."
Also observing the morning activity was co-owner Ahmed Zayat, who has now had horses finish second in three of the past four runnings of the Kentucky Derby.
"I keep waking up at 3 or 4 in the morning dreaming about the race," said Zayat, whose Nehro finished second in 2011 and Pioneerof the Nile was second in 2009.
Does Bodemeister win the Derby in the dream?
"No, he does not," Zayat said.
On the track earlier in the morning was Baffert's sixth-place Kentucky Derby finisher Liaison, who galloped 1 1/2 miles under Alvarez.
Baffert later told Maryland Jockey Club stakes coordinator Coley Blind that Liaison would not run in the Preakness Stakes. The trainer added that Arnold Zetcher's colt could try the Belmont Stakes on June 9, or return to California for the Grade 2 Californian at 1 1/8 miles at Hollywood Park June 2.
"Liaison ran a big race in the Derby and is doing well," Baffert said.
"Obviously he likes the wet track as we saw the other day," trainer Steve Asmussen said referring to Hierro's victory on a sloppy track in the Derby Trial. "He went really nice this morning."
Asmussen also said that J. Kirk and Judy Robison's Isn't He Clever would not be running in the Preakness.
"We are going to wait for something after the Preakness," Kirk Robison said from El Paso, Texas. "The horse could not be doing any better and Steve said he worked well this morning (a half-mile in :51 3/5 over a track rated as sloppy).
"We are going to wait for the right spot with him and I'll let Steve tell me what that spot is."
Although Hierro and Isn't He Clever were withdrawn from Preakness consideration, Asmussen may still be represented in the middle jewel of the Triple Crown.
A four-time winner with three seconds from 10 starts, Brimstone Island will be entered in the fourth race, a $50,000 allowance at 1 1/16 miles that will likely include trainer Bob Baffert-trained Paynter, runner-up in the Derby Trial.
Monday's defections will enable Guyana Star Dweej to make the field for Preakness 137. Trainer Doodnauth Shivmangal sent the son of Eddington onto a track labeled fast at Belmont Park Monday morning for a leisurely gallop before learning the news. Showing only a maiden victory on his resume, Guyana Star Dweej will likely be one of the longest shots in the prospective field.
"After his maiden win (April 7 at Aqueduct) we knew he had run a better Beyer (Speed) Figure in every race and he beat older horses," said Shivmangal, who saddled Isn't He Perfect for a ninth-place finish in last year's Preakness. "He ran against some good horses. One of the horses that beat him at Aqueduct, Morgan's Guerrilla, that's the horse they took to the (Grade 3) Illinois Derby."
Shivmangal said he probably should have given the colt more recovery time after the maiden score, but instead ran him back in 20 days and finished second in an optional claimer the first time facing winners.
"I should have given him the whole month off," said the 59-year-old Guyana native. "I was really heading to the Peter Pan (Grade 2 last Saturday at Belmont). Since we didn't get to the Peter Pan, I decided to give him a shot in the Preakness. He's a horse, I think, that can go the mile and three-sixteenths."
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