Trainer Kiaran McLaughlin said his pair of Godolphin Racing Classic
contenders, Alpha and Consortium, have “switched
spots,” with Alpha now being based at Palm Meadows in Florida
and Consortium located at Belmont
Alpha had been training at Belmont
since December 28 and made two van rides over to Aqueduct Racetrack to win the
Count Fleet on January 7 and the Grade 3 Withers on February 4. Following the
Withers, McLaughlin said Alpha would most likely make his next start in
Aqueduct’s Grade 3, $400,000 Gotham at 1
1/16 miles on March 3 or the Grade 1, $1 million Resorts World New York City
Casino Wood Memorial at 1 1/8 miles on April 7. McLaughlin now says the Wood
Memorial is the likelier option.
“He shipped yesterday and is at Palm Meadows,” said
McLaughlin, form Florida.
“He’ll train here and probably won’t work for two weeks.
There’s a plane going up to New York before the Gotham we could take, but
he’ll probably make his next start in the Wood Memorial, with an outside
chance of the Florida Derby [March 31 at Gulfstream Park] the week
Consortium prepped at Palm Meadows for his start in the
Gulfstream’s Grade 3 Holy Bull on January 29 and was re-routed to New York after finishing
last of six in the one-mile race, which was contested over a sloppy racetrack.
“We sent Consortium on a van to New York [Friday],” said McLaughlin.
“We’ll look at the Gotham with
him. He worked at Palm Meadows on Thursday [four furlongs in 50.90], and he
probably won’t work in New York
until [February 18].”
McLaughlin said he has two possibles for the Grade 3, $200,000 Tom Fool
Handicap on the Gotham undercard in Darley
Stable’s Emcee and Crossbow. Emcee is unbeaten in two starts,
having rolled to a six-length allowance score on February 3 at Gulfstream in his
most recent start, with Crossbow having taken an Aqueduct optional claimer by
three lengths the same day.
“Emcee would probably be the horse, but Crossbow is another horse
who could point for that race,” said McLaughlin.
Shadwell Stable’s Falaah,
winner of two straight over the inner track, is no longer under consideration
for the Tom Fool after exiting an optional claiming score with a bone chip,