Asmussen plans to load up in Remington Springboard Mile

December 10, 2019 01:08pm
Asmussen plans to load up in Remington Springboard Mile
Photo: Courtesy of Remington Park

Don Thompson, stakes coordinator at Remington Park, expects a "local affair" for the $400,000 Remington Springboard Mile given an ongoing equine herpesvirus quarantine that could force shippers to remain in Oklahoma City longer than they’d like after Sunday’s race.

Trainer Steve Asmussen told the racing office he'll enter five contenders, however, adding depth to the year’s final points-paying prep for the 2020 Kentucky Derby. Two of those runners were known as of Tuesday.

L and N Racing’s Rowdy Yates has already won two stakes at Remington Park, with the state-bred taking the Oct. 18 Oklahoma Classics Juvenile and Nov. 15 Don McNeill Memorial Stakes, the latter run at the Springboard Mile distance.

“We had a tip that he was going to be a nice horse at the sale,” Lee Levinson, racing manager for L and N, told Remington Park publicity. “He’s a (son of) Morning Line, out of a nothing mare and people thought we were crazy to give forty-some-thousand for him. We just thought he was good-looking and we rolled the dice, hoping to get lucky.”

Calumet Farm’s Jungle Runner went from maiden special weight to stakes winner in the Nov. 1 Clever Trevor Stakes. That same race produced last year’s Springboard Mile hero Long Range Toddy, another from the Asmussen barn.

In all, Asmussen horses accounted for 15 of 88 nominations ahead of Wednesday’s entry deadline. The Springboard Mile pays out Derby qualifying points on a 10-4-2-1 basis to its Top 4 finishers.

Other known Springboard Mile probables include Embolden, a stakes-winning Virginia-bred who has run on turf and dirt; the Wesley Ward-trained Maximiliano, a six-furlong maiden special weight winner at Keeneland; and Kirkcules, second to Rowdy Yates in his last start.

The EHV-1 quarantine cost the Springboard Mile its potential favorite this week when the Daily Racing Form reported Chance It, a multiple stakes winner at Gulfstream Park, would not ship following his Monday work. He would not have been allowed back at Joseph’s Gulfstream Park base for a month.

Answer In, a Churchill Downs maiden winner on Oct. 27, is also among those not making the trip to Remington Park. While the son of Dialed In continues to work consistently, Thompson said trainer Brad Cox won’t be sending horses in for Sunday’s card.

“There will be fill ins from the local population here,” Thompson said. “We’ll wait until tomorrow and see with some of these guys. There aren’t going to be any superstars.”

The Springboard Mile anchors a stakes program Sunday afternoon that includes the $100,000 Trapeze for 2-year-old fillies; the $100,000 Jeffrey Hawk Memorial for 3-year-olds and up; the $100,000 She’s All In for fillies and mares 3 and up; the $70,000 Jim Thorpe for Oklahoma-breds; and the $70,000 Useeit for state-bred fillies.

 

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