Constitution Doing Well After Donn
February 08, 2015 09:43am
Constitution, winner of the 2015 Donn Handicap
Photo: Gulfstream Park Photo

Stablemates Sandiva, Mshawish, and Constitution, winners of Saturdays’ Suwannee River (G3), Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap (G1), and Donn Handicap (G1), respectively, are doing well following their big efforts, according to trainer Todd Pletcher.


“So far so good,” Pletcher said. “Everyone looks like they came out of it in good order.”


Sandiva and Mshawish, both Al Shaqab Racing color-bearers, prevailed as favorites in their respective races, while Constitution was the second-choice behind defending champion Lea in the Donn. Pletcher, who saddled 11 horses on the 13-race card, captured three of the day’s four graded stake races with his runners.


“We were hopeful that we could have a big day,” Pletcher said. “We felt like we had some horses that were training very well. In Mshawish and Sandiva’s case, they were both coming off stake wins at the meet, and Constitution, we knew he liked Gulfstream from last year. So we were optimistic, but at the same time, we knew they were difficult races to win.”


Sandiva, winner of the Tropical Park Oaks in her Gulfstream debut on Dec. 20, earned her first North American graded stakes victory in the Suwannee River, while Mshawish, in taking his third straight Gulfstream Park turf stake, came away with his first Grade 1 score while overcoming a rough trip under Javier Castellano, who teamed up with Pletcher for all three stake triumphs.


“We wanted to get some cover. We got that,” Pletcher said. “When you’re in that situation, you have to get lucky and find a seam at some point, and it didn’t look like he was ever going to get to find that seam, but he did. He was able to split horses and finish very well.”


Pletcher has not yet finalized a plan for the runners going forward, though he and WinStar Farm President Elliott Walden are considering a start in the $10 million Dubai World Cup (Group 1) on March 28 for Constitution, who earned a 113 Beyer for his Donn win and remains undefeated in four starts at Gulfstream, including a win in the 2014 Florida Derby (G1).


“I need to talk to Brad Weisbord and Harry Herbert from Al Shaqab about firming up which direction we’re going to go with Sandiva and Mshawish,” Pletcher said. “I talked to Elliott a little bit this morning about Constitution. We’ve kicked around the idea of Dubai, but we haven’t committed to it yet. It’s certainly one of the options.”


Source: Gulfstream Park


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