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It's Official: Gourmet Dinner Off The Derby Trail

Gourmet Dinner
Doing Right By Gourmet Dinner

Zipse’s Kentucky Derby Daily – Day 38

The mystery is over … Gourmet Dinner is officially off the Triple Crown trail due to a sore shin that developed soon after his last race, a strong second place finish in the February 26 Fountain of Youth Stakes.

In speaking with trainer Steve Standridge today, I learned of the minor injury which was discovered eight days after the Fountain of Youth.

“We probably could have nursed him up to the Florida Derby, but that was not the right thing to do for the horse,” said Standridge.

No timetable has been set for his return, but fans will be happy to know that the son of Trippi is doing well and has been walking for about a month back in Ocala. He is set to begin jogging again sometime in mid-April.

Standridge elaborated on his immediate future, “We have no specific plans for his return. He’s been good to us, and we’ll let him tell us when he is ready to come back.”

It’s nice to see connections of a quality horse not push their horse to participate in the Kentucky Derby. And make no mistake; Gourmet Dinner is a quality horse.

Gourmet Dinner had become one of the most popular horses on the 2011 Kentucky Derby trail for good reason. The $40,000 purchase from the OBS Two-year-olds in training sale of last April raced his way to become one of the leading earners of graded stakes money. In fact, despite his recent inactivity, he still would hold down the 2nd spot on the graded earning’s list if he was pointing for Louisville.

After beginning his career with three consecutive wins at Calder, Gourmet Dinner tasted his first taste of defeat when he finished 2nd in the rich In Reality division of Calder’s Florida Stallion series. He thus was ignored at 20-1 when he shipped out of town for the first time and ran in Delta Down’s $1 million Jackpot. The result was an impressive and decisive 2 ½ length victory. Not resting on those laurels, the Our Sugar Bear Stable owned colt was soon shipped to California, where he had the worst finish of his career, a 4th place finish in Hollywood’s CashCall Futurity.

A return to Florida this year saw a return to top form as Gourmet Dinner clashed with top company to finish a solid 3rd in the Holy Bull Stakes, defeating Mucho Macho Man in the process, before his excellent rallying effort to Soldat in the Fountain of Youth, where he finished well ahead of To Honor and Serve.

A hard knocking horse that fires every time is what Gourmet Dinner proved to be in his first eight races. Hopefully with a little R & R he comes back as good, if not better than ever.


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Older Comments about It's Official: Gourmet Dinner Off The Derby Trail...

A shame but I'm pleased to hear they are going to be patient with him. The time off might even help him improve in the long run.
I too am glad his connections are taking the right course of action for the horse..this way we get to see a good horse get better rather than a horse that is pushed too far..glad to hear that it is only shins.
I believe he wast just waiting to talk with Horse Racing Nation ;-)
Kudos to the connections for taking care of the horse, but let's be honest, they were not really grown-ups about this. This is a sport and if you are trying to get to the Kentucky Derby, that is the big-time. And along with that comes responsibilities. To not return the calls of DRF writers for three weeks is just plain silly. He could have simply said the horse had a minor injury and was going to miss a workout. But once they left the track for Ocala, they knew he wasn't coming back. I don't know these connections personally, but if they want to play in the big time, they should have more respect for the fans, tracks, racing secretaries and others working hard to promote the Derby preps and get excited for the Derby.
Liked this horse as well. Wasn't sure about him winning the Derby, but I had (still have) quite a few exactas with him in second.
Kudos to trainerStandridge for doing what was best for the horse
Glad you rooted out the mystery. Liked this horse a lot. Glad he will be back.
Agreed cniema5! In this case, I was actually pleased with what Standridge told me, Chris. At least now we know the injury is very minor.
I should have known no news is bad news
Nice to know what finally happened to him, hope he comes back soon!

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