Mihos done with Kentucky Derby trail, to target 'big' summer spots

March 14, 2019 09:56am
Mihos done with Kentucky Derby trail, to target 'big' summer spots
Photo: Elsa Lorieul/NYRA

With the colt in only light training since getting “a little knocked out” from his first two races of the season, Mihos will not proceed on the 2019 Kentucky Derby trail, said Don Little Jr., president of owner Centennial Farms.

“We’re going to freshen him here for a little bit and prepare for New York, so we’re going to pass on anything for the Derby,” Little said.

Mihos, a son of Cairo Prince who opened his season with a victory in Gulfstream Park’s Mucho Macho Man Stakes, finished fifth last out in the Holy Bull (G2) back on Feb. 2.

Little didn’t completely rule out the Triple Crown, saying the May 11 Peter Pan Stakes (G3), often used as a prep for the Belmont Stakes, is a possible spot for the Jimmy Jerkens trainee.

“There’s nothing really wrong with him. To me, you don’t want to do it unless you’re really spot on,” Little said. “You go in there, you finish 18th or 19th or even 10th — what good does it do? I’m not saying he couldn’t do well, but that’s if you’re at 100 percent.

“We’ll just get ready for the big races this summer at Belmont or Saratoga.”

Little said Mihos “ran his heart out” in his two races this year, which followed a third on debut Sept. 23 — behind fellow 3-year-old stakes runners Vekoma and Epic Dreamer — before the colt earned his chance at stakes company with a Nov. 24 maiden score.

Since the Holy Bull, Mihos posted timed workouts on Feb. 19 and Feb. 26 at the Palm Meadows Training Center in Florida. But connections then decided to back off, seeing the horse had lost a bit of weight. For now, he remains with Jerkens and is walking the shed row.

“We’ve always done the right thing for the horse, and all our best stallions have had the best years of their careers at 4 and 5,” said Little, whose recently produced studs from the Centennial Farms partnership include Lane’s End Farm’s Unified and Wicked Strong, who stands at Spendthrift Farm.

As for Mihos, “He looks terrific if you were to look at him,” Little added. “Jimmy’s such a good horseman. He notices things I don’t, and he doesn’t like the way he’s moving right now.”


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