The horse with the unusual name has already attracted a
national following and the membership in Purple Egg
’s fan club could soon be
The undefeated 2-year-old son of Lion Heart has passed both
of his tests so far with flying colors. An eye-popping victory in a maiden
special weight at Monmouth Park on August 23 by 4 ¾ lengths was followed by a 6
¾ length triumph when he raced his next condition in a non-winners of one other
than allowance race at Parx Racing on September 15.
“He’s two-for-two and we’d like to bring him along in graded
stakes company next,” said Margo Flynn, the vice president of marketing and
publicity at Tampa Bay Downs and one of the horse’s seven owners comprising the
Goodwood Racing Partnership II. “We’re looking at the Nashua (a grade 2 at Aqueduct on November 4)
at a flat mile or the Iroquois, which is a grade 3 (at Churchill Downs also at
The Iroquois is traditionally run on the opening day of
Churchill’s fall meet (October 28) and the card, which features juveniles of
both genders, is billed as “The Stars of Tomorrow.” Purple Egg has so far given
every indication that he belongs in that cast.
“When Paco (Lopez, who has ridden him in both races) got off
him at Parx, he told us that the horse is really getting the hang of it and had
improved significantly from his first race,” Flynn said. “He won by almost
seven (lengths) under a hand ride”
Prior to his maiden score, trainer Jane Cibelli twice sent
him to the races and twice he had to be scratched. His list of transgressions
includes rearing up, dumping his rider, running off, and leading the outriders
on a merry chase each time while continually eluding them. Then there was the
matter of trying to savage the pony sent with him to calm him before his last
“We had no choice but to geld him. The third time he went
over was going to be ‘make or break’ for him and he made it,” Flynn explained.
“After he was gelded his whole temperament changed. He went from being mean and
nippy in the barn to being nuzzly and nice to be around.”
Purple Egg’s pre-gelded antics attracted considerable
attention in the social media universe. After he fired off those two stunning
performances, his legend went viral.
“People have been commenting all over the message boards,”
said Flynn. “He does have a following and it’s growing.”
So are the offers to purchase Purple Egg but so far he’s
staying in Cibelli’s barn.
“Hopefully, we’re going to have a really strong 3-year-old
campaign with him,” said Flynn.