Photo: Coglianese Photos/Lauren King
General a Rod left Gulfstream Park early Sunday morning on a flight
back to trainer Mike Maker’s base in Kentucky, where he will continue on
the Triple Crown trail.
The Roman Ruler colt emerged from his third-place finish in
Saturday’s $1 million Besilu Stables Florida Derby (G1) in good shape
said Maker’s assistant, Elesar Chavez.
Maker flew back to Kentucky after saddling Vicar’s In Trouble to a
win in the Louisiana Derby. Owned by Ken and Sarah Ramsey, Vicar’s In
Trouble did his final work for the Fair Grounds race at
“He came back really good,” Chavez said of General a Rod. “He came
back like it was nothing. He was fine. I talked to Mike this morning and
told him the horse came back really good, but he needed a little bit
more teaching of how to pass the other horses. Mike said he was happy to
be third, the way the horse ran.”
Winner of the Jan. 1
Gulfstream Park Derby and second in the Besilu Stables Fountain of Youth
(G2) on Feb. 22 to Wildcat Red, General a Rod dueled with that rival
through six furlongs in 1:12 before giving way in the Florida Derby. He
was beaten 1 ¼ lengths by Constitution, finishing 2 ¼ lengths ahead of
multiple Grade 2 winner and 6-5 favorite Cairo Prince.
General a Rod has raced once previously at Churchill Downs, finishing
second to Conquest Titan in a one-mile entry-level allowance on Nov.
“He beat some nice horses,” Chavez said. “I asked Mike what he
thought and he said he proved he could run, and he’s going to make a
couple changes so he can run better next time. He said if everything is
well, he is going to go on to the next one.”