Owner Ron Sanchez looked anything but dismayed that his beaten 3-2 favorite Social Inclusion didn't win the
90th running of the TwinSpires.com Wood Memorial on Saturday. On the
contrary, he was delighted with his colt's third-place finish behind
Wicked Strong and Samraat after clearing off by 1 ½ lengths at the top
of the stretch.
ate everything this morning; he's happy," Sanchez said Sunday morning
as a bright-looking Social Inclusion took in the conversation across the
shed row with his ears pricked.
said Social Inclusion would take a van out of Aqueduct at 2 p.m.,
Sunday, and head down to Gulfstream Park to train for the Preakness
Stakes on May 17. The Wood effort was an attempt to get the colt into
the Kentucky Derby, but Sanchez said there would be no further push for
the first leg of the Triple Crown.
we can make the Derby, we're going to go, but I think the main goal is
the Preakness," Sanchez said. "It was the original plan. It's going to
be tough to be in the Derby, you know? Actually, we are in spot 22 with
20 points, and there are like four preps coming up. It wasn't our main
goal to get into the Derby, but we gave it a try."
on his first three races, Social Inclusion appears to be one of the
best runners in his class. He won his first two starts in style at
Gulfstream Park; in the second, he crushed Remsen winner Honor Code by
10 lengths in an allowance on March 12, earning a 111 Beyer Speed
Figure, tops among 3-year-olds this year.
the Wood, however, Social Inclusion, a son of Pioneerof the Nile, met
adversity for the first time. He broke a bit outwardly at the start and
then didn't make the lead, which he had in his first two starts.
he moved up from his outside post in the field of 11 and engaged
Schivarelli, running stride for stride into the far turn, where he
opened up by 1 ½ lengths heading for home. Down on the inside, he tired a
bit late and then lost a photo for the place by a nose to Samraat.
quarter-mile fractional times for the Wood show Social Inclusion
quickening as the race went on: 23.79 seconds for the opening quarter,
followed by 23.32 and 23.29 and then a 25.23. The final eighth of a mile
went in 12.92 seconds.
what he learned about his horse, Sanchez didn't hesitate: "He's a
warrior, that's what I learned. He overcame everything and ran big. I
thought he was going to win in the stretch. The concern was the track
was too deep and slow in the stretch. All the closers came all day long.
The only horse I was concerned with was Wicked Strong."