Preakness Winner Seize the Grey Has Settled in at Saratoga

Seize the Grey Sunday morning at the Lukas barn | Sarah Andrew


At 6:30 Sunday morning, Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas was spotted along the horse trail outside of the Oklahoma Training Track in Saratoga Springs. He was aboard his pony, Bucky and his prized 3-year-old Seize the Grey (Arrogate) was right next to him.

The GI Preakness S. winner is in town and getting ready for the GI Belmont S.

Seize the Grey arrived in the Spa City early Saturday evening around 7 p.m. after a 15-hour van ride from Louisville. The trip didn't bother Seize the Grey one bit.

Lukas said he had planned on just walking Seize the Grey on Sunday after the long journey. The colt  would have none of that.

“He was pretty sharp when I got him off yesterday,” Lukas said at his Oklahoma barn, where Seize the Grey and Bucky are the only occupants. “So, I let him jog on the [Oklahoma] track and stretch his legs. He is good. He is really good.”

Seize the Grey gave Lukas his seventh win in the Preakness; he has won the Belmont four times.

In the Preakness, Seize the Grey, dismissed at 9-1, beat GI Kentucky Derby winner Mystik Dan by 2 1/4 lengths going gate-to-wire.

“I thought I had him really good for the Preakness and it turned out the way I thought it would,” Lukas said. “Since then, the two weeks that I have trained him up until [Sunday], I might have turned him up another notch. We'll see when the gate opens on Saturday.”

Lukas said he plans on having Seize the Grey gallop early Monday morning. He may take him to the main track for that.

Resilience Telling Mott He's Ready for Belmont

Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott said he would let Resilience (Into Mischief) show him if he was ready to take a spot in the GI Belmont S. starting gate.

Looks like he showed him enough.

Resilience worked four furlongs on the Oklahoma Training Track in :48.00 (2/22) with assistant trainer Neil Poznansky aboard Sunday morning at 7:30.

“I saw a very good breeze,” Mott said at his barn on the Oklahoma. “The horse was willing, moving well and the time was certainly fast enough. A very good work, I am pleased with it.”

Mott said he would enter Resilience, owned by Emily Bushnell and Ric Waldman on Sunday. The draw for the race will be held Monday afternoon at 5 p.m. in downtown Saratoga.

Resilience won the GII Wood Memorial S. at Aqueduct before finishing sixth, beaten 7 3/4 lengths by Mystik Dan (Goldencents) in the GI Kentucky Derby.

Mott said he wanted to give his horse another chance to prove to him that he could get the 1 1/4-mile distance.

“Makes sense to try it one more time,” Mott said of the Belmont. “If it doesn't work out, we'll move in a different direction. It's a litmus test.

Antiquarian Leading Belmont Charge for Pletcher

When it was announced that Fierceness (City of Light) would not run in the GI Belmont S., Hall of Fame trainer Todd Pletcher looked up and down his shedrow to see who might be the barn's hero in the final leg of the Triple Crown.

Pletcher came up with three horses and it just might be Centennial Farms' Antiquarian (Preservationist) who leads the way. He, along with Mindframe (Constitution) and Protective (Medaglia d'Oro) will represent the barn in the 1 1/4-mile Belmont.

Antiquarian earned his way into the Belmont starting gate after winning the GIII Peter Pan S. at Aqueduct Race Track by 3/4 lengths. That was a welcome performance after what happened to him in the GII Louisiana Derby.

Prior to the start, Antiquarian broke through the gate and ended up finishing sixth, beaten four lengths by Catching Freedom (Constitution).

“Often times, when a horse breaks through the doors prior to the race, it generally does not turn out well,” Pletcher said outside his barn at the Oklahoma Training Track. “Something got him excited before he did that. To break through the doors and run down the track 100 yards and then come back and reload… certainly not the way you want to get started. It wasn't like him to behave that way.”

Despite the hiccup, Pletcher said his horse ran a respectable race.

Antiquarian, who was again ridden by Hall of Famer John Velazquez, made up for it in the Peter Pan, which had a field of five. He won by three quarters of a length over The Wine Steward (Vino Rosso). Protective finished third.

“The Peter Pan showed more of what he is capable of,” Pletcher said.

Now, another hurdle, one Pletcher thinks Antiquarian can clear in the Belmont.

“We think he will appreciate the mile and a quarter,” Pletcher said. “And we also think he is improving.”

Antiquarian, unraced at age two, has two wins and a third in four career starts. He will try to become the second straight Peter Pan winner to take the Belmont. Arcangelo (Arrogate) did it last year.

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