05/13/2012 2:48PM

2012 Preakness: Creative Cause displays more spunk during extended gallop

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Barbara D. Livingston
Trainer Mike Harrington said he felt Creative Cause, shown exercising April 30 at Churchill Downs, showed the spark and enthusiasm he was missing in the days leading up to the Kentucky Derby when he was out for an extended gallop Sunday morning at Hollywood Park.

INGLEWOOD, Calif .- Creative Cause jogged and galloped more than two miles at Betfair Hollywood Park on Sunday morning, showing enthusiasm that trainer Mike Harrington said he lacked for a few days after a fifth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby on May 5.

“He was pretty much himself this morning,” Harrington said.

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Creative Cause’s revival has arrived just in time. He is scheduled to be flown to Baltimore early Wednesday for Saturday’s Preakness Stakes at Pimlico.

Harrington brought Creative Cause back to California after the Kentucky Derby to train in familiar surroundings, a move he said he does not regret. For a few days at the end of last week, Harrington said that Creative Cause was “quiet.”

Even though he was pleased with Creative Cause’s effort on Sunday, Harrington admitted that another trans-continental plane flight this week could affect the colt’s performance in the Preakness Stakes.

“It’s always a concern,” he said. “I wasn’t too interested in going to Baltimore for two weeks. I thought he’d be happier here.

“I think he’s got his mojo back. If the flight takes it out of him, we’ll have to see.”

Owned by Heinz Steinmann, Creative Cause has won 4 of 9 starts and $408,000. An 11-1 shot in the Kentucky Derby, Creative Cause closed  from 10th in a field of 20 to finish three lengths behind I’ll Have Another. On the turn, Creative Cause was eight wide. He was as close as third with a furlong remaining, but was passed by two runners in the final furlong.

Creative Cause was jogged and galloped daily from Wednesday through Sunday. Sunday, he jogged 1 1/8 miles and galloped about 1 1/4 miles.

Harrington said that Creative Cause would be walked on Monday morning and before jogging and galloping on Tuesday.