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The Derby preps run at the Fair Grounds will be altered next year. The Lecomte will move from 1 and 70 yards to 1 1/16, the Risen Star from 1 1/16 to 1 1/8, and the La. Derby from 1 1/8 to 1 3/16. I guess they want to differentiate themselves from the other preps. Any thoughts?
I'm surprised this hasn't happened sooner. Until now the only TC prep longer than 1 1/8 miles is the UAE Derby.
I like the progression. It may better prepare the true 10f horses, and expose the pretenders. It will be interesting to see how the trainers react. The La. Derby is six weeks out.
The 6 weeks out part is key. I think trainers would pass on a 1 3/16 mile prep if it was 3 or 4 weeks out (any of Wood/SA/BlueGrass/Arkansas) to lessen the chance of a bounce.
At least they're not shortening up the races!
Now the La. Derby can be a prep for the Preakness!
I think it is a prep for the TC. From the 8.5f Lecomte, those horses will be asked to step up at 1/16 mile intervals up to the Derby. Other contenders will only have one 9f prep prior to the Derby, while the La. horses will have a 9f and a 9.5f, providing much more foundation. I will rooting for them in the hopes that it will take the industry back in a direction where they will prep more frequently in their sophomore years, and get away from this two prep preference.
Should weed out the pretenders me thinks..
Smaller Derby field ?
I did read something about a new "one piece" starting gate..who's to know?...
I’m sure you’ll still get 20. Hopefully, more true routers.