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Breeders' Cup 2017

McGaughey Seeks Another Man O' War Win

Imagining Red Smith 615 X 400
Photo: Eclipse Sportswire - Sue Kawcynski

Hall of Fame trainer Shug McGaughey has won the last two editions of the Grade 1, $400,000 Man o' War, with 4-year-old Point of Entry in 2012 and 5-year-old Boisterous in 2013. On Sunday, he'll be trying to make it three straight with yet another horse - the 6-year-old Imagining, most recently runner-up in the Grade 1 Gulfstream Park Turf Handicap on February 9.

 

"That's been our plan," said McGaughey. "We ran him one time in Florida and he ran a great race down there. We wanted to get him up here for the long races and get him started. He breezed this morning on the turf (four furlongs in 50.57 seconds) and went great."

 

As a 5-year-old, Imagining won four of his six starts, with his only off-the-board finishes coming when 10th in the Grade 2 Dixie at Pimlico Race Course and sixth in the Grade 1 Joe Hirsch Turf Classic Invitational in September at Belmont.

 

"The Dixie was just a ridiculous race, a throw out," said McGaughey. "Before the Joe Hirsch, he went a little bit nuts in the holding barn and Johnny [Velazquez] thought he rode him away from the gate a little bit too hard. But, he came back and [won the Bowl Game and Grade 3 Red Smith], so his last three races have been good."

 

 

 

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