Rebel Stakes (G2) winner Malagacy and Wood Memorial Stakes presented by NYRA Bets (G2) runner-up Battalion Runner will both bypass the May 6 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1), trainer Todd Pletcher confirmed via text message April 29.
- Chestnut Colt
- Born 2014
Multiple Eclipse Award winner Todd Pletcher thought Always Dreaming and Tapwrit were most impressive, Patch was better than usual, and Battalion Runner struggled with the track.
Always Dreaming, an impressive winner of the April 1 Xpressbet Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park, breezed five furlongs April 21 at Palm Beach Downs in 1:01.40, a move that pleased trainer Todd Pletcher.
Pletcher currently has five horses ranked in the top 20 on the Kentucky Derby leaderboard used to determine the field: Always Dreaming (7), Tapwrit (12), Malagacy (13), Patch (18), and Battalion Runner (19).
Classic Empire let his actions silence some of the doubts that had mounted since February when he surged past Conquest Mo Money and Malagacy in late stretch to capture the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
Thanks to lack of the clarity on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, Classic Empire could bring the hype full circle back to him should the 8-5 morning-line favorite prevail in the Arkansas Derby against 11 others.
Prominent agent Steve Young recalls purchasing Rebel Stakes (G2) winner Malagacy at the 2016 Fasig-Tipton Midlantic sale of 2-year-olds in training.
Sumaya U.S. Stable's undefeated Malagacy was doing great the morning after his mild upset in the $900,000 Rebel Stakes (G2) March 18 at Oaklawn Park.
Malagacy gave his future Hall of Fame conditioner another legitimate sophomore to point toward the first Saturday in May when he captured the $900,000 Rebel Stakes (G2) by two lengths over Sonneteer at the Hot Springs oval March 18.
The 3-year-old Shackleford colt scored by 15 lengths under Javier Castellano over a muddy track.
|Trainer||Todd A. Pletcher|
|Owner||Sumaya U.S. Stable|
|Malagacy View Five-Cross Pedigree||Shackleford||Forestry|
|Sale / Hip||Type||Buyer||Consignor||Price|
|Weanling||Stoney Lane Farm||Paramount Sales, agent||$45,000|
|Yearling||De Meric Stables, agent||Stuart Morris, agent||$130,000|
|Two-year-old||Steven W. Young, agent||De Meric Sales, agent||$190,000|
|Fall At Last|