According to a report from bloodhorse.com, 2012 Breeders' Cup Juvenile champion Shanghai Bobby is out of consideration for the Triple Crown races.
Shanghai Bobby was one top contenders for the Kentucky Derby on May 4 and one of the favorites to win the G1 Florida Derby this past Saturday. But he finished a disappointing fifth, 10.75 lengths behind the winner Orb.
A son of Harlan's Holiday out of the Orientate mare Steelin', he won his first five races last year as a two-year-old, culminating with his win in the BC Juvenile. This earned him the Eclipse Award as the two-year-old champion colt.
But this year, he lost both of his starts, the G3 Holy Bull and the G1 Florida Derby.
At the G3 Holy Bull, he drew the rail and was prompted to take the lead and was eventually tracked down by the winner, Itsmyluckyday. It was his first loss, but Itsmyluckyday broke the track record that day and Shanghai Bobby earned a career-best 100 Beyer figure for that effort.
On his last start at the G1 Florida Derby on Saturday, he was one of the favorites to win and drew again the rail at the post positions draw. But this time there was another speed horse—Merit Man—that took the lead, and Shanghai Bobby was forced to stay pinned inside by favorite Itsmyluckyday.
He ran in tight quarters on the first turn and was never comfortable during the race, unable to fully stretch his legs. When his regular rider, Rosie Napravnik, cued him to make his run just before the stretch, he failed to fire.
Even before the Kentucky Derby trail started this year, there were questions regarding Shanghai Bobby's ability to run the Classic distances. That question remains in place today.
According to the report, trainer Todd Pletcher believes is an energy level issue. He said:
"There's nothing obviously wrong with him but we will go over him thoroughly and give him some time off to fully recover from his long campaign," Pletcher said in the April 1 release. "He'll be sent to Payton Training Center today and allowed to have the down time that he seems to need right now."
Whether it's an energy-level issue or his ability to get the distances—or competition—we won't see Shanghai Bobby on any of the Triple Crown races. This means that we will be seeing him in the second half of the year, and we'll know better then where his future in racing lies.
Shanghai Bobby is co-owned by Starlight Racing, Mrs. John Magnier, Michael B. Tabor and Derrick Smith. He is trained by Todd Pletcher and was ridden by Rosie Napravnik on all of his races.
His record at the moment stands at 7-5-1-0, with lifetime earnings of $1,797,000.
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