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Confidence Game, 10th in the Kentucky Derby (G1) in his first race since winning Oaklawn Park’s Feb. 25 Rebel Stakes (G2), resumed training Wednesday with a gallop at Churchill Downs.
Trainer Keith Desormeaux would like to run in the Preakness Stakes (G1), a race he won in 2016 with Exaggerator, but wants to make sure the colt’s energy level has returned.
2023 Preakness Stakes
Desormeaux said the 10 weeks between races “had nothing to do” with Confidence Game’s placing. That said, he thinks having that time off between the Rebel and the Derby will play in Confidence Game’s favor in the Preakness.
“You want me to just lay down the law, the truth?” he joked earlier in the week before returning to California to check on his Santa Anita barn. “I used the Derby to prep for the Preakness. A $50,000 (in entry fees) workout. We got to party, got a saddle towel, got a lot of good pictures, prep for the Preakness. Now all I’ve got to do is jog him, light gallop, and we’re ready.”
Desormeaux said the Derby field doesn’t get the respect it merits, starting with Mage’s late rally to edge the gritty Two Phil’s by a length.
“I heard some rumbling that it was a great year to win with a lesser horse. That’s B.S.,” he said. “Those are some good horses. I thought it was high quality, even with (Florida Derby winner) Forte out and (Santa Anita Derby winner) Practical Move. How much better is it with those guys? But I still think it was an awesome race.”
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