Mage Looks Ready for May 20 Preakness
Tuesday, May 9, 2023
    BALTIMORE - Gustavo Delgado Jr., son of and assistant to trainer Gustavo Delgado, said Mage has shown all the right signs following his thrilling victory in Saturday’s first leg of the Triple Crown and will run in the 148th Preakness Stakes at Pimlico Race Course on May 20 as long as everything continues to go well.

    OGMA Investments, Ramiro Restrepo, Sterling Racing and CMNWLTH’s Derby hero walked around the shedrow at Churchill Downs Monday morning, two days after the chestnut colt won the Kentucky Derby by a length over Two Phil’s.

    The Good Magic colt is expected to jog around the racetrack this morning shortly after the Churchill Downs track opens at 5:30 a.m. ET.

    “He ate up everything, his feed, he’s feeling good,” Delgado Jr. said. 

    Mage finished a close second in Gulfstream Park’s Curlin Florida Derby in his third career start, five weeks before taking the 149th Kentucky Derby.

    “It’s amazing. We’re still digesting it,” Delgado Jr. said. “I’m still playing text messages from two days ago. It’s a very good feeling.” 

Forte ‘Looked Very Good’ in Monday Morning Gallop

    Forte, last year’s 2-year-old champion who beat Mage in the Florida Derby and Fountain of Youth, galloped at Churchill Downs Monday morning for an anticipated run in Preakness. Forte was scratched the morning of the Derby, for which he was favored, with the remnants of a foot bruise sustained earlier in the week.

    “He looked very good,” Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher said. “He galloped a mile and three-eighths very comfortably. Seemed happy like he normally is. He’ll work probably Friday or Saturday.”

    Asked if there was any sign left of the bruise, Pletcher said, “No, I think that’s completely subsided now. Right now, I’d say we’re looking good to breeze for the Preakness. If we’re happy with that, that’s what we’re thinking.”

    Of being scratched from the Derby, “I’m mostly disappointed for the Violas and the Repoles and the horse himself,” Pletcher said, referencing owners Vinnie Viola and Mike Repole and their families. “As we know, you’ve got to be good on the one particular day, and there are no makeups. We’ve just got to adjust, move on and focus on trying to prepare him the best we can for the Preakness.”

    Pletcher, who has won the Kentucky Derby twice and the Belmont Stakes four times, will be seeking his first success in the Preakness should Forte be entered.

Rivelli: Two Phil’s ‘Back at Home Chilling’

    Trainer Larry Rivelli said Monday afternoon that Derby runner-up Two Phil’s has exited his strong performance in good order.

    “He’s back home and chilling,” reported Rivelli from his home base at Hawthorne Park.

    A firm decision has yet to me made about a Preakness start.
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