Jack Milton Looks to Continue Pletcher's Success

HorseRacingNation.com
April 07, 2015 12:29pm
Jack Milton 615x400 Lauren King photo
Photo: Lauren King

Three Grade 1 races were run at Keeneland on Saturday, and trainer Todd Pletcher had his fingerprints on all of them with a victory and two seconds.

On Friday, Gary Barber’s Jack Milton will look to continue the barn’s fast start in the 27th running of the $300,000 Maker’s 46 Mile (G1).

“He is doing well and coming into the race the right way,” said Tristan Barry, assistant to Pletcher. “He worked well here on Saturday (a half-mile on the main track in :47.80).”

Jack Milton, now 5, won the Transylvania (G3) in 2013 in his lone start on the Keeneland turf course. In 2014 he won the Poker (G3) and began 2015 with a fourth-place finish in the Canadian Turf (G3) at Gulfstream on Feb. 21.

“This race was one that was on the radar for him,” Barry said. “We thought he ran very well in his last race. He had a wide trip that day in his first start off a (five-month) layoff.”

This Saturday, Barry said the barn will have a presence in the $250,000 Coolmore Lexington (G3) and run Protonico in the $150,000 Ben Ali (G3).

A two-time Grade 3 winner last year and runner-up in the Clark (G1), Protonico worked a half-mile in :47.20 on Sunday, the fastest of 86 at the distance that morning.

“He’s doing very well and we expect him to run well,” Barry said.

Pletcher also has Unitarian in his barn and he is expected to defend his title in the $250,000 Dixiana Elkhorn (G2) on April 18.

Through the first two days of the meet, Pletcher has sent out seven runners with two wins, three seconds, a third and a fourth. Kiaran McLaughlin is the only other trainer to have two victories.

“This is a tough meet and everybody comes in loaded for bear,” Barry said. “We just hope to get lucky and win a few.”

Pletcher won Spring titles here in 2005 and 2008, ironically both years when he saddled the winner of the Toyota Blue Grass, a feat accomplished by his Carpe Diem on Saturday. Pletcher also shared the Fall title last year.

Barry said that Carpe Diem, Central Bank Ashland (G1) runner-up Angela Renee and Madison (G1) runner-up Stopchargingmaria would return to the track Wednesday.

Source: Keeneland Association

 

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