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Breeders' Cup 2017

Decision on Miner's Reserve Due Friday

2010 Travers Logo

Hall of Fame trainer Nick Zito is going to take his time making a final determination whether to run all three of his entrants in Saturday’s 141st running of the Grade 1, $1 million Travers at Saratoga Race Course.

 

Front-running Miner’s Reserve, runner-up to A Little Warm in the Grade 2 Jim Dandy July 31, drew post position 1 in the 11-horse field. Florida Derby winner Ice Box will break from post 6, and Dwyer winner Fly Down from post 8 in the 1 ¼-mile race.

 

Both Miner’s Reserve and Ice Box are owned by Robert LaPenta, who is expected to arrive in Saratoga Springs and visit Zito’s barn on Friday morning.

 

“We’ll just wait, at least for tomorrow,” Zito said. “I was going to try to make a decision today, but Bob said to just wait it out and see what happens. The horse is doing well, no question. When I looked at the draw, I wasn’t too happy, but who knows. We’ll see.”

 

At 12-1, Miner’s Reserve has the highest morning-line odds of Zito’s Travers triumvirate. Fly Down is 8-1, while Ice Box, runner-up to Super Saver in the Kentucky Derby, is listed at 10-1.

 

“People are saying that it’s a wide-open race. Obviously, if it’s a wide-open race, maybe Miner’s has a shot, too. We’ll figure it out,” Zito said. “You never say never, and it’s a good possibility I’ll run him. If at the last minute, if I think it’s not the right thing to do, I’ll talk to Bob about it and see what it is. It is the Travers, so we’ll see what happens.”

 

Zito has started 23 horses in 16 previous Travers since 1980, the most of any trainer, and has run three in one race before. In 2004, when he captured his only Mid-Summer Derby with Birdstone, he was also second with The Cliff’s Edge and fifth with Sir Shackleton.

 

“If you look at the replay, Sir Shackleton was stopped at the three-eighths pole. He could have been third,” Zito said. “The main thing is participating, always being in a big race, a big show, is a blessing. Winning is the whole key, but just competing all the time on a high level is great.”

 

 

 

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