05/02/2014 9:06AM

Kentucky Derby: Pablo Del Monte scratched

Barbara D. Livingston
Pablo Del Monte, who drew in to the Kentucky Derby when Hoppertunity scratched, will skip the race and look toward the Preakness.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Pablo Del Monte will not run Saturday as a drawn-in also-eligible in the 140th Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs, it was announced early Friday by the connections of the Florida-bred colt.

There had been doubt whether Pablo Del Monte would run after a spot became available with the scratch of Hoppertunity early Thursday. Wesley Ward, who bred, trains, and co-owns Pablo Del Monte, said after a phone conversation Friday morning with others in the ownership group that they “chose the prudent option” and will look instead toward the second leg of the Triple Crown, the May 17 Preakness at Pimlico.

A majority interest in Pablo Del Monte is owned by the Ireland-based Coolmore group of Michael Tabor, Susan Magnier, and Derrick Smith, with Ward owning 25 percent.

Pablo Del Monte would have had to start from the outside post in a field of 20, which now stands at 19 with his scratch. Pablo Del Monte would have carried saddle towel No. 21 with Jeffrey Sanchez aboard as a 50-1 chance on the Derby morning line. There were no other also-eligibles entered.

A spot became available after Hoppertunity, the second choice on the morning line, was scratched by trainer Bob Baffert because of a minor foot injury. The morning line was adjusted afterward, with California Chrome remaining the 5-2 program favorite and Wicked Strong becoming the second choice at 6-1.

With Hoppertunity having vacated post 11, the 10 horses to the inside will not move one spot farther toward the outside, with Vicar’s In Trouble actually breaking from the second gate and Wicked Strong from the outside post.

The speedy Pablo Del Monte was sired by the Coolmore stallion Giant’s Causeway and produced by One Hot Wish, a standout sprinter owned and trained by Ward. The chesnut colt most recently ran third as the pacesetter in the April 12 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland. He won his first two career starts before finishing fifth in the Generous on turf, fourth in the Gulfstream Derby, and third in the Hutcheson.

Anonymous More than 1 year ago
shady move
Johnson Smith More than 1 year ago
So basically any trainer/owner who was worried about points would have a horse in the starting gate had they simply filled out an entry form.
GuyFleegman1 More than 1 year ago
Bet the horse at #22 would have run
Paul More than 1 year ago
Entering and not running when you get in should get a fine. Unless some thing is wrong. Hate it when that happens with mtos that scratch when the race comes off and its a 4 horse field.
f p More than 1 year ago
"...will NOT move one spot farther toward the outside...." Is that a typo?
Eric Boyle More than 1 year ago
"NOT" is suppossed to be "NOW". Instead of 12-20 moving in one, 1-10 will shift one spot to the right, creating a little breathing room for Vicar's In Troule. Maybe the rail isn't such a bad place to be now!!!
Ferd Berful More than 1 year ago
For safety this is a good thing. The 1 post is actually aligned inside the rail when they break forcing that horse and jockey to either take back or try to push out to avoid the rail.
Joseph Malatesta More than 1 year ago
Why send the horse to Kentucky if you're not going to run him when there's nothing wrong?
erika More than 1 year ago
He was stabled at KEE about 100 miles from CD.
Mark D More than 1 year ago
The point system to get into the derby also should determine post position draw. If these longshots who dont belong want to run....they should get the worst posts.
B More than 1 year ago
Interesting idea.
Narindra Sooknanan More than 1 year ago
then the best horse with the top points always get the best post. the triple crown should be about being to win and run at any post over three tracks. just my $0.02
jttf More than 1 year ago
keeping horses out of the one hole the last two years. means churchill is admitting that there are too many horses in the starting gates. danger danger, will robinson.
erika More than 1 year ago
Nice reference to the '60s TV series Lost in Space.
Walter More than 1 year ago
Good, another horse who didn't belong is not running. Any horse who was that far down the list doesn't belong either, so no tears for those connections. There doesn't always have to be 20 horses in the gate. Some of the best have had 12-14 horses in it