Preakness Contender Dazzling Gem Breezes at Churchill

Preakness Contender Dazzling Gem Breezes at Churchill

Dazzling Gem galloping at Churchill Downs on May 4th – Coady Photography

Louisiana Derby (gr. II) third-place finisher Dazzling Gem, who fell short of qualifying to the Kentucky Derby, breezed four furlongs at Churchill Downs on May 15th as he prepares for a possible start in the May 21st Preakness Stakes (gr. I) at Pimlico.

Trained by Brad Cox, Dazzling Gem went the distance in :49.60. With exercise rider Fernando Espinoza in the saddle, Dazzling Gem posted fractions of :12.60 and :24.60 before continuing past the wire through five furlongs in 1:02.80 and six furlongs in 1:16.40.

“I thought he worked really well; nice and steady,” Cox was quoted as saying in a Churchill Downs press release. “He is fit and I didn’t want to do a lot with him. It was just a maintenance work.”

Dazzling Gem is also under consideration for a run in the Sir Barton Stakes at Pimlico on the day of the Preakness; no definite decision has been made on which race he will enter.

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Follow J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman"):

J. Keeler Johnson is a writer, blogger, videographer, and all-around horse racing enthusiast who was drawn to the sport by Curlin's quest to become North America's richest racehorse. A great fan of racing history, he considers Dr. Fager to be the greatest racehorse ever produced in America, but counts Zenyatta as his all-time favorite. He lives in Wisconsin and also writes for the Bloodhorse.com blog Unlocking Winners.

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