Kentucky Derby 2014: Dream Come True...We Could Be in With Two
With two 3-year-olds under consideration for the 140th Run for the Roses, it’s a very special time for West Point Thoroughbreds Partners. We’re in business to help people fulfill their dreams, and dreams are becoming reality for two partnerships. When WPT runner Flashy Bull competed in the 2006 Kentucky Derby, some Partners told us the walkover before the race was one of the most emotional, memorable experiences of their lives.
With over 25,000 Thoroughbred foals born in North America in 2011, the chances of having two horses in the Kentucky Derby are less than 0.000064%.
Tampa Bay Derby (G2) winner Ring Weekend is training at Fair Hill Training Center and scheduled to breeze on Friday, April 25. After the workout trainer Graham Motion and WPT president Terry Finley will make a final decision about the Kentucky Derby. Owned by WPT and St. Elias Stable, the son of Tapit is slated to ship to Churchill Downs on Monday, April 28.
“He ran a huge race at Tampa and then seemed to struggled over the surface in his last race, the Calder Derby,” said Graham Motion, trainer of 2011 Kentucky Derby winner Animal Kingdom. “He’s bred to handle a mile and a quarter and couldn’t be doing any better physically after shipping up to Fair Hill.”
Ring Weekend winning the Tampa Bay Derby (G2):
Commanding Curve is officially #21 in the points standings, but trainer Dallas Stewart is training him like we're runnin' in the Derby.
Commanding Curve worked a strong five furlongs in 1.00:40 on Friday with 2013 Kentucky Derby runner up Golden Soul and has been generating buzz around the Churchill backside.
“This was his best work ever,” said Stewart. “He’s a brave, durable horse and I see the the race setting up for him. We got left at the break in the Louisiana Derby and he still came running.”
"When Commanding Curve won at Churchill last November, we said, 'Let's try not to go to the well too many times,'" said Terry Finley, president of the West Point Thoroughbreds syndicate that owns Commanding Curve, as well as the Graham Motion-trained Tampa Bay Derby winner Ring Weekend. "Very quickly thereafter we said, 'We'll run him twice. If we can get to the Derby, we get to the Derby. But we'll skip the first one at the Fair Grounds.' Quite frankly, I think it's worked. We ran OK in the Risen Star. Dallas isn't a trainer who really squeezes on them, so we thought we'd be better in the Louisiana Derby. And he did run better.
"It's third time off the layoff, which I think from a handicapping angle is intriguing. He looks like a Derby horse, carries himself the right way.… Up to now, everything has kind of rolled forward according to plan. The plan was always to win the Kentucky Derby. If things continue to stay on plan, I think we've got a shot. I think he'll be one of the 'wise guy' horses in the Derby."
Shaun Bridgmohan (Churchill’s leading rider at the 2013 spring meet) has the call on the son of Master Command.
Commanding Curve rallying to get up for third in the Louisiana Derby (G2):