AP’s DERBY TOP 10: No. 2 Mohaymen set for Fountain of Youth


Richard Rosenblatt

AP Racing Writer

Mohaymen is primed to put his unbeaten record on the line this weekend in the Fountain of Youth Stakes.

And he’s not the only 3-year-old without a loss set for Saturday’s 1 1/16-mile prep at Gulfstream Park on the road to the Kentucky Derby. At least two other undefeated horses are scheduled to run, Awesome Banner and Zulu.

“All is well,” Mohaymen trainer Kiaran McLaughlin said of his gray colt who is 4-for-4. “We’re ready.”

Mohaymen remains No. 2 in the AP’s latest Run to the Roses Top 10 list of Derby contenders, with unbeaten Nyquist still No. 1 following his sixth straight win in the San Vicente on Feb. 15.

The only change in this week’s Top 10 is Mo Tom moving in at No. 7 after a gutty third-place finish despite being jostled and cutting his right front leg during the stretch run of Saturday’s Risen Star at the Fair Grounds.

Gun Runner won the Risen Star and moves into our keep-an-eye-on category.

With Derby qualifying points now at 50-20-10-5, Gun Runner is the new leader with 51 points, followed by Nyquist at 30, Mor Spirit at 24 and Mo Tom at 22. Mohaymen has 20.

Purchased by Sheikh Hamdan’s Shadwell Stable for $2.2 million at the 2014 Keeneland Yearling Sale, Mohaymen won in his debut at Belmont Park last September, then took the Grade 2 Nashua and Grade 2 Remsen at Aqueduct. In his first start this year, the son of Tapit easily won the Holy Bull by 3 1/2 lengths at Gulfstream last month.

Here’s our Top 10:

1. Nyquist (Doug O’Neill, trainer; Mario Gutierrez, jockey): San Vicente winner has impressive 6-0 resume. … Win in $1 million Florida Derby for Florida-bred colt worth added $1 million bonus. .. Next start: Florida Derby, Gulfstream Park, April 2. … Derby odds (pool 2): 7-1.

2. Mohaymen (Kiaran McLaughlin, Junior Alvarado): Holy Bull winner puts 4-0 record on line in Fountain of Youth. … Worked 4 furlongs in comfortable 49.60 seconds at Palm Meadows on Feb. 19. … Next start: Fountain of Youth, Gulfstream Park, Saturday. … Odds: 4-1.

3. Mor Spirit (Bob Baffert, Gary Stevens): Robert B. Lewis winner could stay out West for final Derby preps. … Worked 4 furlongs in 48.60 at Santa Anita on Feb. 17. … Next start: San Felipe, Santa Anita, March 2. … Odds: 12-1.

4. Brody’s Cause (Dale Romans, Corey Lanerie): Still awaiting 3-year-old debut. … Winner in two of three races, colt ran third in BC Juvenile in last race. … Next start: Tampa Bay Derby, Tampa Bay Downs, March 12. … Odds: 15-1.

5. Exaggerator (Keith Desormeaux, Kent Desormeaux): San Vicente runner-up will stay in California for next prep. … Has three wins in seven career starts, and over $1 million in earnings. … Next start: San Felipe, Santa Anita, March 2. … Odds: 22-1.

6. Suddenbreakingnews (Donnie Von Hemel, Luis Quinonez): Southwest winner totals three wins, three seconds. … Purchased for $72,000 at Keeneland Yearling Sale. … Next start: Rebel, Oaklawn Park, March 19. … Odds: 5-2 (mutuel field).

7. Mo Tom (Tom Amoss, Lanerie): Gutty third-place finish in Risen Star after impeded in stretch. … Three wins, three thirds in six races. … Next start: Louisiana Derby, Fair Grounds, March 26. … Odds: 28-1.

8. Greenpointcrusader (Dominic Schettino, Kent Desormeaux): Champagne winner worked 4 furlongs in 49.30 seconds at Palm Meadows on Saturday. … Ran second in Holy Bull last month. … Unusual path to the Derby with perhaps only one more prep. … Next start: Louisiana Derby, Fair Grounds, March 26. … Odds: 31-1.

9. Sunny Ridge (Jason Servis, Manuel Franco): Gets chance to step up in next prep. Won Withers and has two wins and two seconds in past four races. … Next start: Gotham, Aqueduct, March 5. … Odds: 5-2 (mutuel field).

10. Frank Conversation (O’Neill, Gutierrez): Headed on long road trip to Dubai for final prep. … Won El Camino Real Derby to give owner (J. Paul Reddam), trainer and jockey a second Derby prospect. … Next start: UAE Derby, Meydan Racecourse, March 26. … Odds: 5-2 (mutuel field).

Keep an eye on: Collected, Flexibility, Gun Runner, Smokey Image, Whitmore.


Richard Rosenblatt

AP Racing Writer

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