03/05/2012 7:29PM

Gulfstream: Alpha looks headed to Florida Derby

Barbara D. Livingston
Alpha, with Ramon Dominguez riding, wins the Withers.

HALLANDALE BEACH, Fla. – Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin said that in light of Hansen’s easy victory in Saturday’s Gotham, he is now more inclined to bring his top Derby contender, Alpha, back in the Grade 1 Florida Derby here at Gulfstream Park on March 31 rather than await the Wood the following weekend in New York. Alpha won both the Count Fleet and Grade 3 Withers earlier this winter at Aqueduct. McLaughlin brought him back to Palm Meadows to continue training following the Withers.

“Considering the way Union Rags and Hansen won their last starts, we won’t be favored in either race,” said McLaughlin. “But at the moment I’m leaning more towards staying down here now for the Florida Derby. I love the timing, the field size should be small and we get to keep Ramon.”

Ramon Dominguez is the regular rider for both Alpha and Hansen.


mace More than 1 year ago
I think they could get John Velazquez or Javier Castellano if he goes in the Florida Derby,depending on how many Pletcher runs in the Florida Derby.I think the primary reason is because they will save the shipping charges and wear on the colt.I think shipping into different weather and surroundings brings more unwanted factors into the picture,track condition,stress,and more posibility of sickness among others.
Wayne Haehner More than 1 year ago
keeping Ramon is the major reason for the juggling arond of plans he is the worlds best jockey by open lengths
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
There are THREE Serious KENTUCKY DERBY Contenders That Are Already Primed and Ready For SHOW-DOWN PART 2 ................................ HANSEN VS UNION RAGS VS CREATIVE CAUSE ................................... As of NOW , You can look all ya want , and wait for afew more weeks to see if anyone rises above . . . . but there is NO OTHER CONTENDERS that matches up with the TOP THREE FINISHERS FROM LAST YEARS BREEDERS CUP JUVENILE ! They seem very well fit and ready for CHURCHILL DOWNS Once Again . . . . drutherford
OwenJ More than 1 year ago
Watch Creative Cause in a true two-turn Derby prep race . He is going to blow them away! Any of them!
steve szymanski More than 1 year ago
Alpha..........I know, I know. Union Rags beat him, so you couldn't possibly fathom the tables turning. Here chalkie chalkieI Here chalkie chalkie!