Updated on 05/11/2012 10:27AM

2012 Preakness: Dullahan skipping race, Belmont Stakes next

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Barbara D. Livingston
Dullahan and jockey Kent Desormeaux return after finishing third in the Kentucky Derby. Dullahan will start next in the Belmont Stakes.

 ELMONT, N.Y. - Dullahan, the third-place finisher in the Kentucky Derby, will pass the Preakness Stakes and point to the Belmont Stakes on June 9, his owner, Jerry Crawford, announced Friday morning.

Though trainer Dale Romans has told Crawford and the press that Dullahan came out of the Derby in excellent condition, Crawford believes it is the prudent thing to wait the five weeks to run the multiple Grade 1 winner back.

“Dale Romans loves the way Dullahan came out of the Kentucky Derby and believes we could win the Preakness,” Crawford said. “But we believe we have a 3-year-old Horse of the Year candidate and that his future is best served by not asking him to race for the third time in just five weeks in the Preakness.”

Dullahan won the Grade 1 Blue Grass on April 14 before finishing third in the Derby.

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Romans has been at Belmont Park this week and was notified by Crawford’s decision via text message late Thursday night.

While Romans said he would have liked to have run Dullahan in the Preakness, he added “we’ll do what we can to get him ready for the Belmont.”

Romans did not indicate when he would ship Dullahan to New York, though last year he shipped Shackleford here in time to get a work over the track.

While Romans will not have Dullahan to run in the Preakness, he will start Cozzetti, the fourth-place finisher behind Bodemeister in the Arkansas Derby. Jose Lezcano will ride Cozzetti.

“He hasn’t shown in his races what he’s shown me training yet; one of these days he’s going to wake up and run big,” Romans said. “His Arkansas Derby was a good race; with a little different scenario he probably should have been second. I just think he’s a good horse, sitting on a big race.”

Meanwhile, Kent Desormeaux, who had ridden Dullahan in the Derby, will now ride Tiger Walk in the Preakness, according to trainer Ignacio Correas. Desormeaux has won the Preakness twice, aboard Real Quiet (1998) and Big Brown (2008).

“I think Kent really fits the horse, maybe he can work some of his magic,” Correas said. 

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Horsemen today love to skip important races to point to other important races. They prefer the horse stay in the barn month after month to "freshen up" thereby gaining some perceived advantage. Affirmed and Alydar faced each other 10 times. Nowadays the horse rests in the barn, being pointed to an important campaign later in the year -- the present time us being occupied with skipping races.
Irish More than 1 year ago
Great Stuff there. Keep 'em coming.
superdog More than 1 year ago
Very smart move. Time for this horse to refresh, and run the mile and a half Belmont.
rvraynmary More than 1 year ago
Good decision. Now, Went the Day Well will be the closer du jour if he is entered in the Preakness.
earl More than 1 year ago
Because closers win the preakness so much!
Willian J. Brune More than 1 year ago
The fact that trainers are now accepting Matz's style of conditioning a horse for a race [5 wks between races as he did in 06 with Barbaro for which they all criticized him] should make for a very competitive Belmont race. Dullahan, Union Rags, probably Mark Valeski and some other Derby class should gaurantee it.
Edward More than 1 year ago
Silly comment. People have been skipping the Preakness to run back in the Belmont since forever. It is in no way a new thing or attributed to anything to do with Mike Matz. In fact, if anything the last few years have shown the lightily raced style is weak unkless all your competition has also followed the same route. There is now a space for trainers to go back and train their horse long and hard and they will have a distinct advantage over the Frankel style(not Matz) of a lot of space between races. IHA took off time between his BL and SA not before the Derby when you are ttrying to peak. He also trained long distances(all TB trainers need to better understand long distance and interval training).
Eric Singer More than 1 year ago
doing what is in the best interest of the horse is always the right decision. Dullahan with his come from the clouds style - seems not well suited to the Preakness (or the Belmont actually either - the Belmont is seldom won by closers and he may need to sit a bit closer to win.) if you buy your PPs on line - you can set the info so that you see the fractions of each individual horse. that way you can see what each of them ran their final quarter in.
James More than 1 year ago
Not my horse...but is that what this has become? Lose the Derby and the Preakness is meaningless all of a sudden? That's garbage. If IHA wins this race, they won't have a 3 year old horse of the year candidate" any longer. They won't even have a 3 year old champion any longer because that will have been decided also.
Virgin Queen More than 1 year ago
your right, its not your horse VQ
B More than 1 year ago
You are oh so right, but I don't think this fact is set in stone. Since 1970, there has not been a single horse who has won the Derby and the Preakness and lost the Eclipse award. That doesn't mean it's not possible though. If some non Derby/Preakness winning three year old wins something like the Belmont, Travers, Woodward, JCGC & the BC Classic or some variation of this, the Derby/Preakness winner most likely would be overtaken. With the exception of Secretariat's, Seattle Slew's and Affirmed's Triple Crown wins & Rachel Alexandra's incredible three year old season, I don't think any Eclipse award has been wrapped up securely by mid summer.
Grass Is Greener More than 1 year ago
Usually any 3yo colt that wins any 2 out of the 3 triple crown races (any 2 races, they don't have to be Derby/Preakness) has the 3yo Colt Eclipse Award sewn up by mid June. Only Riva Ridge (mismanaged the rest of his 3yo season) and Tabasco Cat (bad loss against Holy Bull in the Travers) didn't.
Rob Beaudoin More than 1 year ago
Great decision by these connections. Dullahan should love the big sweeeping turns of Belmont park and the 1.5m should be perfect for him. If he gets a pace to run at he coiuld very well be Belmont winner
stevejPS More than 1 year ago
Makes perfect sense.Once youvelost the Derby and the Triple Crown pressure is off theres no need to compromise the horse's well being witth that brutal 2 week turn around
B More than 1 year ago
I sort of agree, but don't like the lack of sportsmanship involved in that decision. The only change I have ever wanted to see in the Triple Crown is putting in an extra week between the Derby and the Preakness. It would enhance the Preakness field, help the horses who do run in both and the vast majority of the American public would never notice the difference. That one week addition would not suddenly create a rash of Triple Crown winners, though the die hard traditionalists will say it could. We don't breed horses anymore to run three very tough long distance races in a five week time frame. Not sure six weeks would help all that much, but it would be nice to have a Triple Crown winner once in a while though before the American public loses all interest in something that never happens anymore. Much of the country has never even seen the Triple Crown won. Not a big fan of aging, but it was great to have seen the last three Triple Crown wins even though I was an Alydar fan and I think Seattle Slew got lucky facing three very weak fields in his year.
Curtis V Slewster More than 1 year ago
It figures you would be an Alydar fan. He couldn't get past Affirmed in any of the TC races. & then to show what a real Triple Crown champ is made of, Seattle Slew went out & destroyed Affirmed 2 times. Affirmed couldn't get close enough to smell his Butt. That HOY award given to Affirmed was a joke. Alydar was also a joke. Anybody w/even a modicum of handicapping skills knows Seattle Slew was the HOY in '78. He beat him on the track. & carried 128lbs in the Marlboro Cup. Let me address that other imbecilic comment about who the SS beat. The only thing I'll say about who Seattle Slew beat is, who did Affirmed beat ? He beat Alydar. & Affirmed couldn't beat Seattle Slew on the track, except for that little trophy the owner gets. Oh yeah..Affirmed then beat the 'Bid,,,,,,,You gotta be kidding me. Who did Seattle Slew beat ? Lmao. Seattle Slew, the greatest horse to ever look thru a bridle, on & off the track. You tell me. Who's field was tougher ? Affirmed or the Slew ? Thank God they raced head to head..Otherwise we'd have to hear & listen to all that rubbish you know nothing about. Curtis V Slewster............
Keith More than 1 year ago
Good decision. And his come home kick will be better put to the test in the Belmont on 5 weeks rest, assuredy. Wondering if Motion and and the Valor group make the same decision with Went The Day Well, although he is certainly fresher having raced in the Spiral back before the KY Derby, and as he had the fastest come home time of :25.15 for the last quarter in the Derby (Dullahan was second fastest at :25.87 although very, very wide), he has done a lot this year. Keith L.
Grass Is Greener More than 1 year ago
Dullahan will be very short price in the Belmont, a wiseguy pick. Unfortunately late running wiseguy picks coming out of the Derby and/or the Preakness rarely work in the Belmont recently. I would say only once since 2000, that would be Jazil. In the Preakness? Much much worse. I guarantee that Went the Day Well will not hit the board in the Preakness. I will buy all DRF members one round of drink if he finishes 3rd, 2 rounds if he finishes 2nd, and 5 rounds if he wins. Just send me a message the following week.
tony More than 1 year ago
Excellent decision. A fresh horse with a strong late kick who will get the distance...