Probable favorite Scrappy T won't start in the $300,000 Leonard Richards Stakes (gr. III) at Delaware Park July 17, trainer Robert Bailes said.
Nick Zito, soon to become racing's newest Hall of Fame trainer, committed Sir Barton winner Pinpoint to the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) June 11 after the son of Peaks and Valleys worked Thursday at Saratoga's Oklahoma training track.
In an NTRA "Pre-Belmont" teleconference Thursday, trainers of the first three Preakness Stakes (gr. I) finishers--Afleet Alex, Scrappy T, and Giacomo--spoke to national media about that battle at Pimlico and the grueling 1 1/2-mile Belmont Stakes (gr. I) that awaits June 11.
Scrappy T, a distant third behind Bellamy Road in the Wood Memorial (gr. I) three weeks ago, found Saturday's $150,000 Withers (gr. III) more to his liking. The Fit to Fight gelding seized the lead from War Plan at the quarter pole and outlasted Park Avenue Ball for a one-length victory at foggy Aqueduct Park Saturday.
Dismissed at odds of 11-1, Marshall E. Dowell's Scrappy T, shook away from an early pace duel and then held off favored Naughty New Yorker by a length to win Saturday's $83,175 Count Fleet for 3-year-olds at a mile and seventy yards.
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