Rosario To Ride Japan's France Go de Ina In Preakness

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France Go de Ina | Coady

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Joel Rosario, who guided Japan's France Go de Ina (Will Take Charge) to a troubled sixth-place effort in the G2 UAE Derby when last seen Mar. 27, will retain the ride aboard the colt for the GI Preakness S. at Pimlico May 15, his agent Ron Anderson confirmed Wednesday. France Go de Ina landed at Los Angeles International Airport early Wednesday morning, the first leg of his journey to Old Hilltop for the second leg of the Triple Crown.

According to Kate Hunter, a Triple Crown recruiter who frequently accompanies Japanese horses on their international travels, the chestnut colt was quickly unloaded from his container and whisked off to the on-site USDA quarantine station, but appeared to take the trip from Japan well. Often times, foreign shippers do their quarantine in Chicago, but coronavirus-related restrictions would have added an extra stop, making that route unmanageable.

A $100,000 Keeneland September yearling, France Go de Ina was a debut fourth to Godolphin Japan's Lemon Pop (Lemon Drop Kid) on his six-furlong debut at Tokyo last November, but broke his maiden by four lengths going a mile and an eighth at Hanshin Nov. 28 and added an allowance tally over that course and trip Dec. 19. France Go de Ina had the services of Joel Rosario for the UAE Derby, but he was slowly into stride and raced far back early on. He made steady inside progress and ran on late to finish sixth, a bit more than 10 lengths behind Rebel's Romance (Ire) (Dubawi {Ire}) (video). Should all go according to plan, those two rivals could meet again in the GI Belmont S. June 5.

France Go de Ina will be the second Japanese-based horse to face the starter in the Preakness since 2016, when Lani (Tapit) was beaten five lengths into fifth behind Exaggerator (Curlin), having finished ninth in the GI Kentucky Derby. He was subsequently third, 1 1/2 lengths behind Creator (Tapit), in that year's GI Belmont S. Master Fencer (Jpn) (Just a Way {Jpn}) was seventh (placed sixth) in the 2019 Derby, but skipped the Preakness and was fifth, beaten under three lengths, in the GI Belmont S.

France Go de Ina is set to depart Los Angeles for Newark this Saturday, May 8, following which he will make the four-hour trip by van down Interstate 95 to Pimlico.

 

WATCH: France Go de Ina wins his maiden first time long in November

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