Preakness day began on a somber note May 21 at Pimlico Race Course with the death of grade I winner Homeboykris following his victory in the first race.
Homeboykris breezed a half-mile in :48 2/5 at Churchill Downs April 28 as he continued to work up to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I).
In light of the defections of Rule and Eskendereya from the contenders list and the confirmation Devil May Care will be entered, here is the list of Derby hopefuls based on graded stakes earnings as of mid-morning April 26.
With the declaration of likely favorite Eskendereya from the Kentucky Derby, here is an updated listing of contenders by graded stakes earnings.
Homeboykris, currently the No. 20 horse in terms of graded earnings for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I), worked six furlong in 1:14 4/5 April 21 at Churchill Downs with Julien Leparoux aboard.
Homeboykris is on his way to the Kentucky Derby, while Backtalk's status is up in the air for the May 1 classic
A probable field of six 3-year-olds, headed by Tampa Bay Derby (gr. III) winner Odysseus, is expected for the April 10 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland.
5-year-old Richard's Kid was named Maryland-bred horse of the year for 2009. Other winners include three runners sired by leading Maryland sire Not For Love.
Radiohead, in his first start since finishing seventh in last fall's Grey Goose Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I), coasted to a 3 1/2-length win over Homeboykris in a $44,000 allowance race at Gulfstream Park Feb. 27.
Gulfstream Park's third race Feb. 27 features grade I winner Homeboykris, grade I competitor Radiohead, and impressive winners General Maximus and Thomas Got Even.
Winslow Homer moved into striking position approaching the turn, Winslow Homer splits horses at the top of the lane and held off 2-1 favorite Jackson Bend to win the Holy Bull by a length in his stakes debut Jan. 23.
Jason, Tom, and Rich Nilsen of twinspires/brisnet preview the Holy Bull (gr. III) at Gulfstream, and the LeComte (gr. III) at Fair Grounds on January 23. Watch Video
Gulfstream Park will host an important showdown between several of the most talented 3-year-olds in Southern Florida Jan. 23 when a field of nine square off in the $150,000 Holy Bull Stakes (gr. III).
Aidan O'Meara, Stallion Division Manager at Hill 'n' Dale, talks with Evan Hammonds about Roman Ruler and some of his promising 3-year olds, including Homeboykris and Rule. Watch Video
Alan Porter addresses the emerging acceptance of Mr. Prospector inbreeding--while discussing the emergence of juvenile standout Rule, whose sire Roman Ruler is a Mr. Prospector double carrier.
Buddy's Saint, a 12-length winner of the one-mile Nashua Stakes (gr. II) Nov. 7, returned to the Big A Nov. 28 and turned the $200,000 Remsen Stakes (gr. II) into a romp, winning by 4 lengths over 20-1 longshot Peppi Knows.
A pair of good-looking juveniles, each coming off graded stakes scores in New York, will do battle Nov. 28 in the $200,000 Remsen Stakes (gr. II) at Aqueduct.
Homeboykris collared Discreetly Mine in the homestretch and drew clear late to win the $400,000 Champagne Stakes (gr. I) at Belmont Park Oct. 10. Dublin, the 3-5 favorite in the field of six 2-year-olds, finished fifth.
It's been a decade since D. Wayne Lukas had his last Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner and it is no secret that the 74-year-old is itching for another one. The Hall of Fame trainer may have his best chance at collecting his elusive fifth Derby crown with 2-year-old star Dublin, who leads a field of six in the $400,000 Champagne Stakes (gr. I) Oct. 10 at Belmont Park.
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