Nehro for the Belmont

Nehro and Steve Asmussen
Trainer Steve Asmussen with his horse Nehro at Churchill Downs in Louisville, May 4, 2011.

At the beginning of the Triple Crown, I decided it was Animal Kingdom for the Kentucky Derby (he won), Shackleford for the Preakness (he won), and Nehro for the Belmont, which runs this Saturday. We will see if I can go three for three.

Graham Motion, who trains Animal Kingdom, decided to ship the Derby champion to Belmont a week before, instead of the day before, the race like he did in the Preakness. Lesson learned?

Animal Kingdom is reportedly in sparkling form in his work at Belmont, and handling the track beautifully. His exercise rider took him out with another horse, and gave him a good, strong lead so Animal Kingdom could get a bit of dirt in his face, something he did not like at all in the Preakness. He finished second, only half a length behind Shackleford.

Nehro also is said to be working very well, but not putting up the speed figures Animal Kingdom is. A nonplussed Asmussen says his horse is ready.

Of course, we must not leave the popular Mucho Macho Man out of the equation. He has a new farrier and shoes. Triple M lost a shoe in both the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness, from different feet.

It will be a cracking race, no matter who wins and I intend to enjoy it.

Come home safe and sound, horses and jockeys, we pray.

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