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J W Blue, Pinch Pie Eye Travers, Alabama

The prospective fields for the Grade 1 Travers and Grade 1 TVG Alabama grew slightly over the weekend with the decision by trainer Tony Dutrow to point J W Blue toward the “Mid-Summer Derby” on August 27 and Pinch Pie to next Saturday’s race for 3-year-old fillies.


J W Blue, most recently second in the Barbaro Stakes at Delaware Park on July 9, would be making his third graded stakes start in the Travers, having finished fifth in the Grade 2 Rebel and sixth in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby before coming off the Triple Crown trail.


“Every race that’s come up we’ve had a different winner,” said Dutrow of the major stakes for 3-year-olds this year. “My horse has a great deal to prove, I’m totally aware of that. But I’m feeling like anything is possible, especially up here. Our horse is doing very well, and he may run well. A lot of things have to go real right for our horse to finish up and run well. But he’s a big, strong colt and he may do something. It’s as simple as that.”


As for Pinch Pie, who is 2-1-1 from four starts this year, including a 1 ½-length victory in the Desert Vixen Stakes on the turf at Delaware Park on July 24, Dutrow said the size of the prospective TVG Alabama field had a lot to do with his thought processes.


“Obviously it’s going to be a smaller kind of field,” said Dutrow of the 1 ¼-mile TVG Alabama, expected to be headlined by It’s Tricky and Plum Pretty, the first two finishers in the TVG Coaching Club American Oaks. “The distance is unknown for all of them. But those two fillies went at it pretty hard in the Mother Goose, and they’re coming back on relatively short rest, going another eighth of a mile … maybe they won’t come back and run as well. Maybe they will, I don’t know. But that had something to do with my thought process.”



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