05/07/2013 12:03PM

Churchill Downs notes: Pure Fun out indefinitely with ankle injury

Barbara D. Livingston
Grade 1 winner Pure Fun, who finished sixth in last Friday's Kentucky Oaks, is out indefinitely with an ankle injury.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Ken McPeek said his Kentucky Oaks starter, Pure Fun, will be sidelined indefinitely after being diagnosed with what he described as “an ankle issue” following the filly’s sixth-place finish Friday in the filly classic at Churchill Downs.

At 3, Pure Fun has not returned to the form that carried her to victory in the Grade 1 Hollywood Starlet in December.

“It’s nothing major, and we’re still trying to determine whether it’ll require surgery or not,” McPeek said earlier this week.

McPeek also was disappointed with the Kentucky Derby performances of Java’s War (13th) and Frac Daddy (16th), saying the former will move to grass, while the latter could resurface in allowance company in six weeks or so.

Otherwise, it was a terrific Derby weekend for the McPeek stable.

Bellarmine, named for a private university located just six miles east of Churchill Downs, posted an 11-1 score over Code West in a first-level, two-turn race, one of three pricey allowance wins for McPeek on Saturday.

McPeek seriously considered Bellarmine for the Preakness after that race before announcing Tuesday that the colt will not go to Baltimore.

The other Saturday allowance winners for McPeek were Our Double Play (13-1) and Atigun (5-1), the latter of whom will run next in the Grade 3 Louisville Handicap on the Churchill turf May 25.

Also, Golden Ticket, a dead-heat winner of the Travers Stakes last summer, was a 2 1/2-length winner of a Thursday allowance and probably runs next in the Grade 1 Stephen Foster Handicap here June 15, McPeek said.

Rosario leaves atop standings

Joel Rosario towers atop the spring-meet jockey standings with 14 wins, but now that he will be riding regularly in New York, the top remaining jockeys (with wins) are Shaun Bridgmohan (7), Corey Lanerie (6), and Rosie Napravnik (5).

Among trainers, Mike Maker holds the lead with six winners, followed by McPeek and Amoss with four each.

In the owner category, Ken and Sarah Ramsey figure to continue their domination of this circuit through meet’s end, June 30. They already have eight wins.

McGee wins cards’ final races

The Paul McGee stable had a good weekend by winning the final race on both the Oaks and Derby cards. Sky Girl ($7.80) took the Friday finale under Corey Lanerie, and Column ($19.20) won the Saturday nightcap with Rafael Bejarano aboard.

One of the most satisfying wins in McGee’s career came 25 years ago in similar fashion. He won the last race of the 1988 Derby card with the eventual graded stakes winner Balthazar B., giving jockey Kent Desormeaux his first Churchill win. Desormeaux went on to win the Derby three times.