BALTIMORE, MD – J. Paul Reddam’s Nyquist is scheduled to arrive at Pimlico Race Course late Monday afternoon to prepare for a much-anticipated start in the $1.5 million Preakness Stakes (G1) May 21.
The Doug O’Neill-trained colt, who emerged from last Saturday’s 142nd Kentucky Derby (G1) undefeated and on course for a bid to sweep the 2016 Triple Crown, left the Churchill Downs backstretch at 1:25 p.m. for a short van ride to Standiford Field, Louisville, Ky.’s international airport, for a scheduled flight to Baltimore-Washington International Airport.
Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson, who will join Nyquist at Pimlico Race Course while O’Neill tends to his Southern California-based stable Monday, is pleased with Nyquist’s post-race condition.
“He is full of himself this morning and it is like he never even ran,” said Sisterson Monday morning.
O’Neill and exercise rider Jonny Garcia are expected rejoin Nyquist at Pimlico Wednesday or Thursday.
Nyquist, who scored by 1¼ lengths under Mario Gutierrez in the Run for the Roses, could face as many as 13 rivals in the 141st Preakness Stakes as of Monday morning.
Steve Landers Racing’s Dazzling Gem and Jacks or Better Farm’s Fellowship were added to the list of Preakness candidates, joining the 1-2-3 Derby finishers, Nyquist, Exaggerator and Gun Runner, as well as Suddenbreakingnews, Brody’s Cause, Creator, Lani, Awesome Speed, Cherry Wine, Collected, Laoban and Stradivari.
Dazzling Gem captured his first two career starts at Oaklawn this year before finishing third behind Gun Runner in the Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds and fourth behind Creator in the Arkansas Derby (G1).
“The Preakness is possible and so is the Peter Pan (Saturday at Belmont Park), but right now I am leaning more toward Pimlico than Belmont,” trainer Brad Cox said Monday morning at Churchill Downs.
Fellowship finished fourth in the Pat Day Mile (G3) at Churchill Downs on last Saturday’s Kentucky Derby undercard. Trainer Mark Casse’s son and assistant trainer Norman Casse reported that the son of Awesome of Course exited the race in good order while confirming that the third-place finisher in the Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park is a candidate for the Preakness.
Pimlico Race Course