Although the winner of the $1 million Colonial Turf Cup isn't "showing up" for Saturday's $1 million Virginia Derby (gr. IIT) at Colonial Downs, the field includes plenty in its 12-horse field including two Triple Crown starters -- Steppenwolfer and Seaside Retreat -- and four Turf Cup returnees; Kip Deville (2nd), Go Between (3rd), Roman Dynasty (4th) and Yate's Black Cat (8th).
Trainer Barclay Tagg has passed on bringing the Turf Cup winner considering the three-week period between the twin turf tests too close for Showing Up.
Kip Deville almost stole the show in the Turf Cup when jockey Quincy Hamilton darted him out to a double-digit backstretch lead. Showing Up was the only colt in the 14-horse field able to catch the tiring frontrunner. Trainer Richard Dutrow decided to keep the Oklahoma-bred son of Kipling on the grounds at Colonial for the three weeks between the two races.
Owner Peter Vegso and trainer Bill Mott have teamed up to win the Virginia Derby twice, but this time they won't have jockey Edgar Prado to deliver a winner. Garrett Gomez, who rushed Go Between up to third in the Turf Cup, may benefit the second time around with an extra sixteenth with the son of Point Given
The two Triple Crown participants are Steppenwolfer and Seaside Retreat.
Steppenwolfer finished third in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) and fourth in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I). Seaside Retreat finished 10th in the Kentucky Derby and won the $100,000 Charley Barley Stakes at Woodbine on the turf.
Roman Dynasty and Manchu Prince are two colts trained by Todd Pletcher that are entered. In making his first appearance on the turf, Roman Dynasty ran fourth in the Turf Cup. Manchu Prince, who has already won an optional claiming race at Colonial, has won three of his four starts. His only loss was a ninth place finish in the Tropical Park Derby that was won by Barbaro at Calder Race Course on New Year's Day. Yate's Black Cat, who had a troubled trip in the Turf Cup, also returns for the Virginia Derby.
Spider Power is a late nomination trained by Kiaran McLaughlin. The Irish-bred colt raced primarily in England before coming to America in January. Jose Santos, who was aboard for his second place finish in the $100,000 Hill Prince (gr. IIIT) at Belmont gets the mount.
Proudisky made his first start in the United States July 1, just missing in the $150,000 Arlington Classic (gr. IIIT). The German- bred, who broke his maiden by 15 lengths in the first attempt in Dusseldorf is sired by $1 million Arlington Million (IT) winner Silvano.
Genre duplicated many of his successful English turf outings of last autumn in California this past spring, including winning his last start in the $150,000 Cinema Breeder's Cup Handicap (gr. IIIT) at Hollywood Park. Also
entered are Sir Classic Chris and Readily.
Prior to the Virginia Derby, the $200,000 Virginia Oaks for 3-year-old fillies on the turf also drew a field of 12.
The $1 million Virginia Derby (gr. IIT)Post position-horse, jockey, trainer
1 – Seaside Retreat, Patrick Husbands, Mark Casse
2 – Go Between, Garrett Gomez, William Mott
3 – Spider Power, Jose Santos, Kiaran McLaughlin
4 – SCRATCHED (Steppenwolfer, Robby Albarado, Daniel Peitz)
5 – Manchu Prince, Cornelio Velasquez, Todd Pletcher
6 – Kip Deville, Rafael Bejarano, Richard Dutrow
7 – Proudinsky, Victor Espinoza, Mario Hofer
8 – Readily, Charles Forrest, John Mellon
9 – Sir Classic Chris, TBA
10 – Genre, Martin Pedoza, Ben Cecil
11 – Roman Dynasty, Mike Luzzi, Todd Pletcher
12 – Yate's Black Cat, Richard Migliore, Dale Romans
The $200,000 Virginia Oaks
1 – Aunt Henny, Rafael Bejarano, Michael Matz
2 – High Moment, TBA, Rodney Jenkins
3 – Dancing Band, Garrett Gomez, Todd Pletcher
4 – Hostess, Victor Espinoza, James Bond
5 – Fiery Dancer, Cornelio Velasquez, Merrill R. Scherer
6 – May Night, Robby Albarado, Fred Seitz
7 – Royal Descent, Emilio Rodriquez, Mark Kohlheim
8 – Runaway Nell, Malcolm Franklin, Janet Davidson
9 – Festival Queen, Kyle Kaenel, John Scanlon
10 – Art Show, Michael Luzzi, Hamilton Smith
11 – Julie B, Larry Reynolds, George Yetsook
12 – Empress Pegasus, TBA, Wayne Mogge