04/17/2006 11:00PM

Discreet Cat to pass Triple Crown races


Discreet Cat will bypass the Kentucky Derby to be prepared for other races later in the season, Godolphin announced on Tuesday morning.

The SIX-length winner of the Group 2 UAE Derby had been expected to represent Godolphin in the Run for the Roses this year as Sheikh Mohammed continues to search for an elusive Kentucky Derby crown. Instead, Discreet Cat will be shipped to Belmont park from his Al Quoz base in Dubai on April 23. A number of factors led Godolphin to decide to give the Churchill Downs classic a miss.

"Discreet Cat is a really promising young horse," said Godolphin racing manager Simon Crisford, "but after assessing the situation, Sheikh Mohammed has decided that he would prefer to give him more time.

"We see him as an important horse for Godolphin both later this season and next year," Crisford continued. "He won't actually be 3 until May so we want to give him time to develop. Although we have no specidfic targets in mind for him at the moment, Discreet Cat will not be running in any of the Triple Crown races."

Trained by Stanley Hough to a handy 3 1/2-length victory in a six-furlong maiden at Saratoga in his racetrack debut on Aug. 27 for which he received a Beyer speed figure of 106, the highest awarded any 2-year-old in 2005. Discreet Cat was soon thereafter purchased from Mrs. Paul Robsham by Sheikh Mohammed for an undisclosed sum. He made his 3-year-old debut at Nad Al Sheba on March 9 with a four-length victory in a one-mile conditions race, after which he cruised to victory in the $2 million UAE Derby going 1 1/8 miles on Dubai World Cup night, March 25.

In the third round of the NTRA's Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool, Discreet Cat was bet down to third favoritism at 9-1 behind Brother Derek at 5-1 and Lawyer Ron at 8-1.