Category : News
Sun 08/05/2016 – 17:59 EDT
Nyquist remained undefeated and was able to silence his critics with an emphatic victory in the 142nd running of the Kentucky Derby. The bay colt will now head to Pimlico in Maryland in hopes of winning the Preakness Stakes and becoming one step closer to the Triple Crown.
Trained by Doug O’Neill and owned by Reddam Racing, Nyquist is from the first crop of champion Uncle Mo who has been off to a sharp start to his stallion career. As a juvenile, Nyquist won all five of his starts and emulated his sire with a victory in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) which earned him the Eclipse Award for champion two-year-old. He then went to the sidelines for three and a half months to prepare for his sophomore campaign.
Nyquist delivers in Derby as the favorite
As a three-year-old, his perfect record has remained intact. He made his seasonal debut in the San Vicente Stakes (G2) a winning one. From there, he left California to go take on the then-undefeated Mohaymen in the Florida Derby (G1). He handily defeated that rival and shipped to Keeneland to train for the Run for the Roses. Sent off as the favorite in the Kentucky Derby (G1), he stalked the pace and won by 1 ¼ lengths .
New and familiar rivals for the Preakness
He will head to the Preakness Stakes (G1) as the first undefeated Kentucky Derby (G1) winner since Smarty Jones in 2004. Though the field is not set in stone, he will likely face several fresh rivals like graded stakes winner Collected as well as the up and coming Stradivari. Exaggerator, the runner-up in the Derby, will be back to renew their growing rivalry. The Preakness Stakes (G1) will be run on Saturday, May 21.
The field is set for the $1 million Haskell, where Nyquist will be trying to re-stake his claim as the top three-year-old in the country.
On Sunday at Monmouth Park, the featured race is the $300,000 United Nations Stakes. Scheduled to be run at a mile and three-eighths on the turf, the Grade 1 event has drawn a field of ten colts and geldings.
On Sunday at Monmouth Park, the featured race is the $150,000 Pegasus Stakes, a key prep race for the Haskell Invitational (G1). The Grade 3 event will be contested at a mile and a sixteenth and has drawn a field of seven three-year-olds.
With five grade 1 races and a grade 2, the undercard for the June 11 Belmont stakes could be the best single day of racing on the calendar outside of the Breeders’ Cup.