03/31/2011 10:28AM

Kentucky Derby possible target for two Europeans


Two European-trained horses are under consideration for the Kentucky Derby – War Pact and Master of Hounds.

The Bronx-born Joseph Allen nominated War Pact, his Kentucky-bred son of War Front, to the Triple Crown on Wednesday. Two-for-three on Fibresand at Deauville and Cagnes-sur-Mer, War Pact is ineligible for the European classics because he is a gelding.

“He will run in the Prix de Suresnes at Maisons-Laffitte on April 18,” said his trainer, Jean-Claude Rouget, on Thursday. “After that we will make a decision about America.”

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Even a victory in that 1 1/8-mile listed race worth $80,000 would leave War Pact without a penny in group or graded stakes earnings, making entry into the Derby very difficult. War Pact won a rmaiden race by five lengths second time out going a mile at Cagnes-sur-Mer on Feb. 3. On March 11 at Deauville, he made up a lot of late ground to win a 7 1/2-furlong conditions race by a half-length. The Prix de Suresnes would be his first start on turf.

Aidan O’Brien confirmed on Thursday that his UAE Derby runner-up Master of Hounds was “a possibility” for the Kentucky Derby. The Kingmambo colt has returned to O’Brien’s Ballydoyle training center in Ireland where a spokesman said that “no decision would be made about the Derby until after we see how he is over the next couple of weeks.”

Third in the Group 1 Racing Post Trophy and sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf at 2, Master of Hounds has amassed a total of $441,884 in group or graded stakes earnings, leaving him sixth on the list of Derby eligibles.