Saturday is going to be an emotional day for the West Point Thoroughbreds team on many levels.
Saturday is going to be an emotional day for the West Point Thoroughbreds team on many levels. It’s always emotional when you have a legitimate Kentucky Derby contender vying to secure a spot in the field of 20 on the first Saturday in May. The $750,000 Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) on Saturday at Keenland is the next chapter in King Congie’s quest for the Kentucky Derby. A three-year-old son of Badge of Silver, King Congie is named after the inspiration West Point team member, Congie DeVito, who passed away on February 16th due to complications of brittle bones disease, which confined him to a wheelchair for his entire life.
DeVito was proud of King Congie’s accomplishments on the racetrack. In his third career start, despite going off at odds of 43-1, our colt broke his maiden on the lawn at Aqueduct for trainer Tom Albertrani. He then rang in the New Year with an exciting win in the Tropical Park Derby at Calder. DeVito passed away ten days after King Congie ran in the Hallandale Beach Stakes on February 6th at Gulfstream. He crssed the wire first, but was disqualified for interference in the stretch and placed third. A wonderful effort nonetheless. He suffered a minor setback which prevented him from starting in the Viney Spiral Stakes at Turfway on March 26th, has is primed and ready for a big effort in the Blue Grass. King Congie worked five furlongs in 1.00:60 (12 of 27) on Monday morning over Keeneland's Polytrack.
Terry Finley, president of West Point Thoroughbreds is very thankful for the eleven years he had with Congie DeVito. “Congie was a tremendous person,” said Finley. He was such a great friend and one of the hardest workers I’ve been around. We really miss his positive outlook on life and his courage. I am glad he is getting the recognition because he never wanted any special attention when he was here. He wanted to be treated just like everyone else, and I admire him for that. King Congie is a special horse. He’s been very exciting for all of us involved with him, and it will be a joyous, yet sad time on Saturday if this horse crosses the wire first. Once thing is for sure, we all know Congie will be there in spirit with us win, lose, or draw.”
Tom Albertrani, trainer of King Congie said, “It was always so great working with Congie (DeVito). He’s such a positive person that you never would have known he had physical challenges. I think we are pulling for King Congie on Saturday. We are over the minor hind end isse that prevented him from running in the Spiral, and he's trained very well over this surface. We're going into the Blue Grass with a big shot."
King Congie is #2 of 12 with Rajiv Maragh aboard.
Read more about King Congie and Congie DeVito:
TVG Congie DeVito Video Tribute
2011 Tropical Park Derby