Consolidator headed for the Blue Grass.

Consolidator headed for the Blue Grass.

Anne M. Eberhardt

Lukas Likes Blue Grass Next for Consolidator

(from Santa Anita notes)
Trainer D. Wayne Lukas says he'd prefer that San Felipe Stakes (gr. II) winner Consolidator run next in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) at Keeneland April 16.

"I'm leaning towards my original plans of staying with the Blue Grass," Lukas said from Santa Anita the day after Consolidator bombed a solid San Felipe field by 6 1/2 lengths. "I get the extra week and I like the timing of it. I'm not saying we wouldn't run here (in the Santa Anita Derby on April 9). We could."

The chesnut son of Storm Cat is owned by Bob and Beverly Lewis, who live in Newport Beach. Their Silver Charm won the 1997 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) after running second in the Santa Anita Derby. The Lewises also own Derby contender Going Wild, who ran second to Declan's Moon in the Santa Catalina (gr. II) March 5.

Lukas was brimming with confidence after Consolidator's stakes-record victory.

"Consolidator went right to the head of the (3-year-old) class," Lukas said. "He came out of the race beautiful and he got a lot of pressure early and he stayed around. That's what you like to see because the (Kentucky) Derby is always pressure."

A grade I winner at 2, Consolidator has three victories in nine career starts and earnings of $639,260.

Trainer Ron Ellis said third-place San Felipe finisher Don't Get Mad would probably run in the Santa Anita Derby.

"So far, so good," Ellis said. "We'll decide between the Santa Anita Derby and the Arkansas Derby (gr. II on April 16). Right now, I'm leaning towards Santa Anita."