08/29/2013 8:43AM

Saratoga: Fort Larned to be scratched from Woodward Stakes

Barbara D. Livingston
Fort Larned "wasn't himself behind" after a Thursday gallop, trainer Ian Wilkes said.

SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y. - Fort Larned, last year's Breeders' Cup Classic winner, will scratch from Saturday's Grade 1, $750,000 Woodward Stakes at Saratoga due to a hind end issue, trainer Ian Wilkes said Thursday.

Wilkes said he didn't like the way Fort Larned looked coming off the track following a Thursday morning gallop.

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"This morning the horse wasn't himself behind," Wilkes said. "I don't think it's anything serious. You have to be 110 percent in these races. These are good horses.

Wilkes said he would try to train Fort Larned up to the Jockey Club Gold Cup at Belmont on Sept. 28.

Fort Larned is the second major defection from the Woodward in two days. Cross Traffic didn't enter the race as his connections opted to wait for the Jockey Club Gold Cup.

The scratch of Fort Larned, fifth in the Whitney, leaves a field of six for the Woodward and will change the pace dynamic significantly.

Mucho Macho Man and Paynter now look to be the primary speed horses.

The rest of the field is Successful Dan, Ron the Greek, Flat Out and Alpha.

Parker DuBois More than 1 year ago
If Julien keeps Successful Dan much closer to front he will the horse the beat. The day lost in the Whitney, the track FAVORED SPEED like I've never seen.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
A good bettingrace allows you to play tris, supers, everything across the board a six horse field does not allow you to di anything but WPS.
Perl More than 1 year ago
Nothing wrong with the exacta in a 6 horse race.
rahman Williams More than 1 year ago
But no Tris or supers, this is a hard exacta because you really have to pick only two horses and box I like a little coverage and a quality logical longshot
Parker DuBois More than 1 year ago
Good Luck on all your exotics. I'm playing the entry 1, 1a, Lea with Successful Dan in the double. We'll see what happens, but ANY HORSE like Lea who can run 2nd to WIDE DAN twice and moves on the main track at a shorter distance deserves a look.
noalaistoday More than 1 year ago
You can toss Paynter on the win end. America's most over rated jockey will find away to get him beat!!!! He wins races in California because he gets the best horses in small fields. In these prestige races he is out of his element.
Jerseyjoe B More than 1 year ago
The jocks aren't running. The best horse Saturday will win.
jay More than 1 year ago
Black Onyx will win the Breeders' Cup Classic.
Parker DuBois More than 1 year ago
ARE YOU KIDDING YOU OR YOURSELF? A one-time Graded winner in a VERY WEAK Spiral Stakes on Turfway's ultra slow synthetic. Better think again my friend.
Daniel Alvarado More than 1 year ago
The more I look at this field, the harder it becomes to make a case for any of the six remaining contenders: Ron The Greek appears to have lost a step or three, don't know if SD can replicate his Whitney effort, Flat Out doesn't win outside Belmont, Paynter is unproven against these G1 older horses, MMM seems to be the perpetual bridesmaid but never the bride in G1 races and Alpha is...well, Alpha is Alpha.
B More than 1 year ago
Right on!
Jordan More than 1 year ago
I think your point shows that perhaps the Eastern older horses have been a tad overrated this season. Ron's name still holds some sway, but he just hasn't been as good this year as last year and hasn't looked a threat to win a race since the Big Cap when he came in off the Sunshine Millions romp. MMM and SD have combined to win zero grade 1 races in their careers. Flat Out is the most accomplished of them, but he hasn't proven he's the same very elite runner outside Belmont. Paynter has the most upside, but if his last race wasn't due to a dislike for poly he's in trouble because we just saw what Game on Dude did to Kettle Corn under equal weights(KC got 11 lbs from Dude at Hollywood). The Eastern older males, especially when one adds Fort Larned and Cross Traffic, are without question more talented and deeper than the horses Game on Dude just beat at Del Mar. But I think folks making this case have oversold the Eastern runners. Of them, Fort Larned has proven he's elite at multiple distances at multiple tracks but has become wildly inconsistent and pace dependent, Flat Out has proven he's elite at multiple distances at Belmont, and Cross Traffic has proven he's elite at a mile, very good at 9f, but totally unknown at 10f. MMM and SD have not proven they are elite(gotta win at least one gr.1), Ron the Greek was once borderline elite but not this year. Paynter, who's stabled out West, is a huge question.
Meydan Rocks More than 1 year ago
I must say, I saw Ft Larned last year from about 5 feet away. He is one impressive looking specimen!! Wise Dan is looker too! I have to say the above two looked more imposing than Game On Dude who looks so docile before races that I find it hard to believe his transformation on the track.
Ceil Rock More than 1 year ago
Bob Baffert said Game On Dude is the sweetest horse in his barn. (Also the best horse in his barn.)
David Juffet More than 1 year ago
One thing has nothing to do with other. Forget gold cup for now it's woodford day.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
This is like watching a championship chess match. BORING! Yet strangely intriguing between Todd and Ian. Ian just trumped Todd's move with Cross Traffic. Now JCGC looks to have real pace. Advantage Fort Larned. And this just helped out Orb and PM.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
P.S or folks scared of PAYNTER. COLT DOES HAVE HEART. And a win on east coast might wake up sleeping racing fans. RHIS RACE and Paynters story up to it should be nationally televised if we want some positive publicity and a new fan base. Even my niece wants to come see Paynter!
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Aorry for Scooby Doo typo!
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Starting to type like Mark..less than a minute ago.....
Mark More than 1 year ago
PS. The orb thing is getting rather old . ;)
David Juffet More than 1 year ago
One thing has nothing to do with other.
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
JCGC bigger purse and better set up for Classic. Even if FL has "issue". And knowing Wilkes, he doesn't point injured horses towards ANY race. So to me its cloak n dagger moves.
Mark More than 1 year ago
Advantage is ct. He owns a victory already head to head. In a race called the Whitney .
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Where every handicappers in the country including Watchmaker said he would set pace and tire. Hence JV stole the race like Gary did Preakness. Wont happen again IMO
Mark More than 1 year ago
so all were 100% incorrect . why not berate them as you do me ? lol. Orb winless since may. championships won in the fall not spring !
Thomas Cook More than 1 year ago
Mark. I don't mean to berate you. Apologies. And honestly after the fact do I gloat or am I a good sport? I offer you and others my opinions. Based upon my 39 years around thoroughbred. Rode my first one at age two with mom walking him. Grew up on farm back home with grandpa as trainer. Been licensed since 1997 as trainer. Assistant to Frank Alexander for a while. I know Dogwood connections and a few more. Cherokee Runs owning family the Robinson's. Know many trainers. I just spent NY life around horses so I know em. That's why I see Orb building on his Travers 3 rd place finish. It was a tough field. He ran inside the whole race. Got beat a length off layoff. Shug does NOT drill his horses. If Orb isn't first or second next start...then ill admit he has reached a plateau. But I will bet him BIG in JCGC and I believe ill cash. I know Shug. Followed him my whole life. This colt us special. As is PM
edb More than 1 year ago
Paynter is a wonderful story and hopefully will get to the Classic. Didn't think FL was going to win so there goes all that money. Didn't like CT making the distance, so there goes that money. Trying for a better price and will hope Flat Out gets to Paynter at the wire( I know it's not Belmont). Will put Mucho and Dan to fill out tri. Alpha is off the rails and Ron is not scary.
David Juffet More than 1 year ago
If your looking for a better price look no further then Jackson bend at his favorite distance forth start off aborted retirement to stud. Look for him in lane he's a tough horse, got the jockey too.
Robynrokn More than 1 year ago
Jackson B isn't in this race.
Mike Miller More than 1 year ago
That's why you'll have to looking for him. Looking very hard!! ;)
Robert More than 1 year ago
So I guess I saved myself 6 hours of driving. No reason to go to Spa on Saturday now. Even the Forego has a less then stellar field.