Haikal misses training; Kentucky Derby 2019 status uncertain

May 02, 2019 08:28am
Haikal misses training; Kentucky Derby 2019 status uncertain
Photo: Chelsea Durand/NYRA
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On the heels of favored Omaha Beach's scratch from the 2019 Kentucky Derby, another defection could be on its way.

Grade 3 winner Haikal, a 30-1 morning line shot, did not train Thursday morning due to a foot abscess that has formed on his left-front, trainer Kiaran McLaughlin said.

The Shadwell Stable runner is undergoing treatment -- constant soaking in epsom salts -- with hopes he can return to the track Friday and remain in contention for Saturday's race at Churchill Downs.

"It's going to be a quick fix, but I don't know if it's going to be quick enough," McLaughlin said.

Haikal enters the Kentucky Derby off a third in the Wood Memorial (G2). Two starts back, the son of Daaher rallied to win the Gotham Stakes (G3) around turn. All five of his career starts have come at Aqueduct.

"He has to train for us to be comfortable with it," McLaughlin said. "If he can't train -- if he's still sore on the foot -- then we'll be out by 8 o'clock tomorrow morning."

Omaha Beach's scratch allowed Bodexpress in from the also-eligible list. Twenty-one horses entered the Derby, so if Haikal is to also defect, 19 will head postward.


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