Only two other horses are entered in The Tampa Derby. How is that for ducking and dodging?
According to this article more will be entered ,,, bridge Jumpers will be out in full force
Brandon Benson/NYRA photo
by Jeff Lowe
Whirlaway Stakes winner Barrier Reef will not participate Saturday’s Tampa Bay Derby (G3) after missing a few days of training at Payson Park due to a minor injury.
“He grabbed himself behind coming off the track the other day in the mud,” said Rick Mettee, the United States assistant to Godolphin Racing trainer Saeed bin Suroor. “It’s nothing serious—he’s going back to the track [on Wednesday]—but he missed his scheduled workout the other day. I spoke with Saeed, and he said ‘Let’s just pass this race.’”
Mettee said no decision has been made on an alternative race for Barrier Reef, who was transferred to Godolphin after his victory in the Whirlaway on February 2 at Aqueduct for owner Darley Stable.
Barrier Reef was not among the early nominees for the Triple Crown. The late nomination deadline is March 29.
The defection leaves Atoned and Big Truck as perhaps the leading rivals for champion War Pass in the 1 1/16-mile Tampa Bay Derby. Atoned has not raced since his second-place finish in the Remsen Stakes (G2) on November 24. Big Truck finished second in the Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay on February 16.
Stakes coordinator Duane Christo said local horses Dynamic Wayne, Gentleman James, and Song of Greatness are likely for the Tampa Bay Derby. Cigar Man, Golden Spikes, and Stormin Yank also could join the field.