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Eskendereya Proves Much Best in Wood Romp

Eskendereya entered the Wood Memorial as one of the early Derby favorites, he will exit New York as an almost certain strong choice to give Todd Pletcher his first Kentucky Derby winner. Zayat Stables' powerfully built chestnut colt looked spectacular in the Wood Memorial powering to a 9 3/4 length victory over one of the strongest fields assembled during this Derby prep season.

The early pace was set by 69-1 longshot Most Happy Fella who carved out an opening quarter mile in 24 2/5 seconds before covering the opening half mile in 49 1/5 seconds. Jackson Bend and Eskendereya stalked those slow opening fractions while Schoolyard Dreams set just behind that bunch. Awesome Act was rank for the entirety of the backstretch and never seemed to settle under jockey Julien LeParoux who kept a tight hold on his charge until the stretch. Carnivore was behind early and never really contended.

As the field turned for home it became clear the it was going to be a facile victory for John Velazquez aboard Eskendereya, who made a very talented field look extremely average down the stretch. As Eskendereya pulled away from the field Jackson Bend held on gamely for second holding off Awesome Act by a head. It was another 1 1/2 lengths back to Schoolyard Dreams in fourth.

Eskendereya covered the 1 1/8 mile distance of the Wood Memorial on a fast track at Aqueduct in 1:49.97. Eskendereya is by top stallion Giant's Causeway, and is out of the Seattle Slew mare Aldebaran Light.

 

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Older Comments about Eskendereya Proves Much Best in Wood Romp...

seasoning a la Curlin, Medalia D'Oro and many others might be this ones only impediment.
Please no one read the post above mine! Medlocke is truly lost!!! Esky was not on the lead in this race buddy! did u watch it! Esky stalked behind happy fella and jackson bend. You are worried about the distance on a horse who just ran 1 1/8 and didnt break a sweat? also he showed the ability to RATE and sit just behind the leaders, which gives him the best chance to win over a horse like Lookin at Lucky who always seems to get stuck in traffic!!!
In a word, DOMINATION. Enough said.
Absolutely impressive. No doubt about it, this horse has got what it takes, I think. I don't think he ever even drew a hard breath in the race? The only thing that concerns me about Eskendereya moving forward to the 2010 Kentucky Derby is the extra 1/8th mile. Today, it didn't appear that the extra 1/8th will be a problem, but today he was all alone out on the lead. Being stalked by Jackson Bend and Awesome Act throughout the race. At Churchill Downs. Eskendereya is likely to be pressed on the front end by Sidney's Candy and probably stablemate Rule. IMO. With these three quality colt's going at each other on the front end, and the extra distance added, could it potentially set up the Derby for a stalker or deep closer to snatch the roses? Someone like Lookin At Lucky or even an Interactif if he shows?

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