Vinery sires are ready to strike when The Championships move to Randwick this Saturday and they have another two colts on the Kentucky Derby trail during Easter.
Dortmund (Big Brown) puts his unbeaten record on the line in the G1 Santa Anita Derby while Daredevil (More Than Ready) runs in the G1 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct.
Trainer Bob Baffert sent Dortmund for his final workout breezing 1200m in 1:11.60s. “He looked great and is right on schedule,” Baffert said on Sunday. “We’re very happy with the way he won last time and the way he’s heading into the next one.”
Dortmund has built a picket-fence of five in a row that includes the G1 Los Alamitos Futurity in December and a last-start victory in the G2 San Felipe Stakes on March 7.
Baffert has the two pre-post favourites for the Kentucky Derby on May 2 with American Pharoah the $5.50 morning-line choice after a 6 length romp in the G2 Rebel Stakes. He is by Pioneerof the Nile and was conceived at Vinery Kentucky.
Stablemate Dortmund is next in the market at $7 and there’s history on his side; apart from Baffert’s record of preparing three Kentucky Derby winners, his sire Big Brown won the G1 Kentucky Derby and the G1 Preakness Stakes in 2008
Daredevil (More Than Ready) is a $31 chance for the Run for the Roses and he reeled off 800m in 48.85s at Belmont Park last weekend. “He did it very easily,” trainer Todd Pletcher’s New York foreman Byron Hughes said. “He galloped out strong and the rider had a good hold.”
Daredevil won the G1 Champagne Stakes at Belmont in October before finishing off the board as favourite for the G1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita. He resumed on March 7 when runner-up in the G2 Swale Stakes at Gulfstream Park.
“We’re definitely happy with his work,” Hughes continued. “Whenever I watch him, I think he can do just about anything.”
Pletcher won the 2010 Kentucky Derby with Super Saver for WinStar Farm and the same combination races Daredevil. “We have been looking for a top son of More Than Ready and we believe Daredevil is the most exciting one to come along yet,” WinStar president Elliott Walden said after buying a 50% share in the colt. “I love the fact Todd picked him out as a yearling; nobody knows More Than Ready better.”
At Randwick, More Than Ready has Ready For Victory and Always Allison among the leading candidates for the G1 ATC Sires’ Produce Stakes while Vinery sires will be represented in the G1 Doncaster Mile by Hooked (Casino Prince) and Plucky Belle (Mossman).