02/19/2014 2:21PM

Fair Grounds: Bond Holder withdraws from Risen Star

Shigeki Kikkawa
Bond Holder, less than 100 percent after a rough flight, will skip the Risen Star to await the San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita.

NEW ORLEANS – Bond Holder will be scratched from the Risen Star Stakes on Saturday at Fair Grounds due to body soreness caused by a rough flight from Los Angeles to New Orleans, trainer Doug O’Neill said Wednesday.

Bond Holder would have been among the favorites in the Grade 2, $400,000 Risen Star. In September, he won the Grade 1 FrontRunner Stakes, subsequently finishing fourth, beaten about three lengths, in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, and fourth, beaten about nine lengths, in the Dec. 14 CashCall Futurity, Bond Holder’s most recent race.

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Bond Holder’s defection allows Emmett Park, the first also-eligible, to draw into the over-subscribed Risen Star.

Bond Holder flew here Sunday on a FedEx flight. O’Neill’s stable is active on Twitter, and two postings earlier this week suggested nothing was amiss. Monday, O’Neill’s Twitter account reported that “Bond Holder and crew arrived safely yesterday.”

Tuesday, the stable tweeted that Bond Holder had jogged without incident during training hours. “All reports are good,” the tweet said, referencing assistant trainer Leandro Mora, who was overseeing Bond Holder’s training here.

[ROAD TO THE KENTUCKY DERBY: Prep races, point standings, replays]

“He jogged yesterday and Leandro was very happy with him. Johnny Garcia was on him and he was very happy,” O’Neill said Wednesday. “This morning he just seemed a little body sore, which he was when we first got there from the trip. All his major parts are good. He’s probably 90 percent. None of us want to lead him over if he’s not 100 percent. The right move is to get him on the plane, get him home, and shoot for the San Felipe.”

The San Felipe Stakes is on March 7 at Santa Anita. Bond Holder will fly back to California on Sunday, O’Neill said.

Owned by Reddam Racing Stable, Bond Holder as of Wednesday had accumulated the seventh-most Kentucky Derby qualifying points, 11, but he will drop in the standings this weekend with stakes offering 85 qualifying points each to be run at Fair Grounds and Gulfstream.

A previous version of this article misstated the number of Kentucky Derby qualifying points offered in stakes run at Fair Grounds and Gulfstream this weekend. The races will offer 85 points each, not 95.


tinakatherine7 More than 1 year ago
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i know the game More than 1 year ago
Hopportunity and baFfert scared him. Damn that horse fast ran faster than any of these. Add in a closers track. Baffert takes it to the east coast and cruises.
jttf More than 1 year ago
six straight six furlong works each week is very agressive training. why not run the horse in a sprint race, if you are going train like this. no wonder the fields are so small in california. california's most talented horses are being pushed to the limit. three horses out of the cash call have been sidelined (shared belief and electric eddie). six derby trail horses have been sidelined and five of them are from california.
Five More than 1 year ago
Did they install cameras at FG for this race ?
Charles Sakach More than 1 year ago
As I was saying... With all the speed that is in this race, Bond Holder would have had to circle a field of quitting horses to get this one. Sorry...I just don't think he had a serious shot for the win. After watching last year's traffic jam into that first turn, the speedy Rise Up being posted from the inside holds the advantage. He looked very impressive in the Delta Jackpot. (The only thing that I wish was that Coastline had a fair start in that one so we could see just how honest he is...however very speedy...very speedy...) The only thing that I wonder about Rise Up is whether he has anything in the tank during the late stages. To his credit, he surmounted such an advantage in his last 2 starts that he could have walked the last furlong and still won. Bob Baffert's Hoppertunity might get a fair shot at getting to the first turn and actually have a shot at this. He could stay close and should Rise Up tire, definitely keep it going to the wire...at a minimum, Hoppertunity can stay close enough to Rise Up to get into the mix.
sjm80s . More than 1 year ago
He's not racing because he is not competitive in this race. Overshooting with a 3 year old out of a weak BC juve again. That Front Runner that he won ,he won as a MAIDEN! How strong was that race? Same Ragozin number awarded for both races. O'Neill is showing his cards. Get him in where he fits in Doug.
Charles Sakach More than 1 year ago
With all the sp
Mike C. More than 1 year ago
You are supposed to win races & be leading rider when you are ridding the favorites 90% of the time. Sadler finally got out of a bad slump when he stopped ridding Bejarano......go figure.
Mike C. More than 1 year ago
riding........damn it! No edit option
Amy Hurley More than 1 year ago
Could you at least try to post your comments, however misinformed, with the appropriate article? Perhaps Rafael is riding so many favorites because he's a good rider and moves almost any horse up, and the public is responding to that?
Joe Rockhold More than 1 year ago
Bejarano is the most over-rated rider on the west coast without a doubt.
Matt Banchero More than 1 year ago
save him....Gold Hawk is a cinch anyways....
Bob Lunny More than 1 year ago
The is collecting milage rewards