John C. Oxley's Flameaway, who won the Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) at Tampa Bay Downs, leads a group of 10 3-year-olds whose connections made the $6,000 late nomination payment by March 19 to become eligible for the 2018 Triple Crown.
There are now 370 horses eligible to participate in the Triple Crown's three-race series: the $2 million Kentucky Derby Presented by Woodford Reserve (G1), the $1.5 million Preakness Stakes (G1), and the $1.5 million Belmont Stakes (G1). The early nomination total was 360 at $600 per horse.
The other late Triple Crown nominees (with trainer) are: Kaleem Shah's All Out Blitz (Simon Callaghan); Steve Keh, CTR Stables, R 3 Racing and Calara Farms' Arawak (Doug O'Neill); Sayjay Racing and Greg Hall's Blended Citizen (O'Neill); Oxley's Determinant (Mark Casse); Godolphin's Gold Town (Charlie Appleby); Ronald Lamarque and Louie Roussel III's Making a Marc (Roussel); Daniel McConnell's Prince Lucky (Todd Pletcher); Joe Peacock's Runaway Ghost (Todd Fincher); and Avni Kapoor, Charnesh Kapoor and Nirav Kapoor's Yulong Warrior (Satish Seemar).
Flameaway, who is trained by Casse, began the week at No. 10 on the Kentucky Derby leaderboard, which will determine the entries for America's greatest race. The Scat Daddy colt has victories on dirt, turf, and synthetic surfaces. He most recently finished second behind Quip in the March 10 Lambholm South Tampa Bay Derby (G2) and is targeting the April 7 Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (G2) at Keeneland.
Gold Town, who romped by 10 1/2 lengths in the Feb. 15 UAE Two Thousand Guineas sponsored by Al Tayer Motors (G3), and Yulong Warrior, an 11 1/2-length victor in the March 10 Al Bastakiya sponsored by Emirates.com Stakes, are expected to meet March 31 in the $2 million UAE Derby sponsored by the Saeed & Mohammed Al Naboodah Group (G2) at Meydan Racecourse.
Blended Citizen and Arawak finished first and third, respectively, in the March 17 Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) at Turfway Park, and the latter was relocated to O'Neill's barn after the race. He was previously trained by Wesley Ward.
Runaway Ghost, runner-up in the Feb. 25 Mine That Bird Derby, is expected to enter the March 25 Sunland Derby (G3) along with Pennsylvania-bred Prince Lucky, who was recently transferred from trainer Larry Jones to Pletcher.
All Out Blitz, runner-up in the Jan. 6 Sham Stakes (G3) and third-place finisher in the Feb. 10 San Vicente Stakes (G2), is in training at Santa Anita Park.
Determinant broke his maiden March 10 with a 1 3/4-length score over 1 1/8 miles on turf at Gulfstream Park.
Making a Marc is entered in a two-turn maiden special weight March 24 at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
The 2018 Triple Crown series opens May 5 with the 144th running of the 1 1/4-mile Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. The 143rd Preakness, the 1 3/16-mile second jewel, is set for May 19 at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Md. The 150th running of the Belmont Stakes, its 1 1/2-mile final leg, is scheduled for June 9 at Belmont Park in Elmont, N.Y.
Three-year-olds that were not nominated to the Triple Crown during either the early or late nomination phases have a final opportunity to become eligible for the races through payment of a supplemental nomination fee due at the time of each race's entry: the Kentucky Derby ($200,000), Preakness Stakes ($150,000) and Belmont Stakes ($50,000). Supplemental nominees for the Kentucky Derby are treated the same as original nominees. If one or more supplemental nominees possesses sufficient "Road to the Kentucky Derby" points to qualify for the Derby field, they will be allowed to start over original nominees that possess lesser qualifications.