Ken McPeek

This Side Up: Overcrowding One Weekend, Isolation The Next

No man an island, huh? Not so sure about that, after the last year or so, when even a family household has sometimes felt like a peninsula at best. So, the very last thing anyone wanted on returning to Saratoga, after being denied its unique balm of fellowship last year, was to hear "the Q word" yet again. A 21-day quarantine for horses stabled in Barn 86, after one of Jorge Abreu's fillies tested positive to EHV-1, must have felt like Groundhog Day for Abreu and neighbor Kenny McPeek. Here...

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Into Mischief Reigns Supreme at Fasig-Tipton July

by Christie DeBernardis & Christina Bossinakis LEXINGTON, KY - It was a very strong day of trade across the board at Fasig-Tipton's July Selected Yearlings Sale Tuesday, and, to no one's surprise, offspring of Into Mischief proved to be the auction's most coveted offerings. The Spendthrift kingpin accounted for three of the day's top four sellers, including the $800,000 sales topper (hip 123), who sold to Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and LNJ Foxwoods. "He is an amazing stallion," Fasig Tipton President Boyd Browning. Jr. said of Into Mischief. "He is always...

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Crazy Beautiful Favored in Delaware Oaks

Phoenix Thoroughbreds' Crazy Beautiful (Liam's Map) is the 6-5 morning-line favorite while facing eight rivals in the 1 1/16-mile GIII Delaware Oaks at Delaware Park Saturday. The gray filly, tabbed a 'TDN Rising Star' following a win in the Runhappy Debutante S., was second in last year's GIII Pocahontas S. and GI Darley Alcibiades S. and began 2021 with a runner-up effort in the GII Davona Dale S. before claiming her first graded victory in the Mar. 27 GII Gulfstream Park Oaks. A troubled 10th in the Apr. 30 GI...

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Unified Filly All Business in Debutante

Behave Virginia (Unified), the first winner for Unified when dueling free and airing on debut beneath the Twin Spires May 28, became her freshman sire's first stakes winner in Saturday's $150,000 Debutante S. at Churchill Downs. The 4-1 chance bobbled slightly at the start and sat behind the leaders in an inside fourth. She split horses as they turned for home and ran to the money to stay perfect. The winner's dam, a $25,000 purchase by Arif Kurtel at the 2019 KEENOV Sale, had a colt by Tamarkuz in 2020....

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King Fury Returns in Ohio Derby

Well regarded before being knocked out of the GI Kentucky Derby after spiking a temperature on the eve of the big race, Fern Circle Stables and Three Chimneys Farm's King Fury (Curlin) looks to bolster his sophomore resume in Saturday's GIII Ohio Derby at Thistledown. Last season's Street Sense S. victor came home seventh in the GI Breeders' Cup Juvenile before finishing fifth in the Nov. 28 GII Kentucky Jockey Club S. at Churchill Downs. Let go at 18-1 for his seasonal reappearance in the Apr. 10 GIII Lexington S....

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Swiss Skydiver To Scratch From Phipps

Peter Callahan's Eclipse Award winner Swiss Skydiver (Daredevil), the joint second choice on the morning line for Saturday's $500,000 GI Ogden Phipps S. at Belmont Park, will be scratched from the race after spiking a fever. "Unfortunately Swiss Skydiver had a 104 fever this morning. We are a scratch," trainer Ken McPeek tweeted early Friday. "We've treated her to knock down the fever and will regroup later in the season." Last year's GI Preakness S. upsetter returned from her winter's rest to romp by 2 3/4 lengths in the GI...

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Freshman Sire Unified Gets First Win at Churchill

Lucky Seven Stable's Behave Virginia (Unified) launched her career in style, rolling home an impressive 5 1/2-furlong winner at Churchill Downs Friday to become the first winner for freshman sire Unified (Candy Ride {Arg}). Narrowly in front into the far turn, she was briefly headed by 6-5 favorite Trade Secret (Goldencents), but wrested the lead back from that rival turning for home. In command from there, the 7-1 chance drew clear through the stretch, crossing the wire 5 1/2 lengths ahead of Trade Secret while under a hand ride. Her...

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King Fury to Miss Preakness

King Fury (Curlin), who was forced to bypass last week's GI Kentucky Derby after spiking a temperature on the eve of the race, will also miss next weekend's GI Preakness S., trainer Ken McPeek confirmed Tuesday. After developing another temperature along with a cough Tuesday, the decision was made to reroute the GIII Lexington S. winner to this summer's GI Travers S. "He's still not 100%," said McPeek Tuesday. Campaigned by Fern Circle Stables, Three Chimneys Farm and Magdalena Racing, the chestnut also won last season's Street Sense S. at...

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King Fury to Scratch from Derby

Fern Circle Stables, Three Chimneys Farm and Magdalena Racing's King Fury (Curlin) will be forced to scratch from Saturday's GI Kentucky Derby after spiking a fever Friday, his trainer Ken McPeek announced via a video on twitter. The $950,000 Fasig-Tipton Saratoga yearling and last-out GIII Stonestreet Lexington S. winner was drawn in post 16 and was 20-1 on the morning line. "King Fury spiked a 104 fever this afternoon after he galloped this morning. He went off his feed. We obviously have to do the right thing--I feel gutted for...

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Essential Quality Tops Loaded Derby Worktab Saturday

Godolphin's Essential Quality (Tapit) headlined a quintet of hopefuls that put in their final major works at Churchill Downs Saturday morning ahead of next weekend's Run for the Roses. Also working on an overcast morning were Juddmonte Farms' Mandaloun (Into Michief), Klaravich Stables' Highly Motivated (Into Mischief), Erv Woolsey and Keith Asmussen's Super Stock (Dialed In) and Fern Circle Stables and Three Chimneys Farm's King Fury (Curlin). Heading the Brad Cox Derby team, last season's juvenile champ worked five furlongs in 1:00.40. With exercise rider Edvin Vargas aboard, the likely...

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McPeek Pointing Lexington Winner King Fury to Derby Or Preakness

Trainer Kenny McPeek said Fern Circle Stables and Three Chimney Farm's King Fury (Curlin) will be pointed to the GI Kentucky Derby or the GI Preakness S. after winning the GIII Stonestreet Lexington S. Saturday at Keeneland. The chestnut returned last night to McPeek's division at Churchill Downs, where he has two wins including the Street Sense S. With the 20 points he earned in the Lexington, King Fury ranks 28th on the Derby points leaderboard and would need several defections to draw into the May 1 Run for the...

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Curlin Colt Rallies 'Fury'-ously To Win the Lexington

Fern Circle Stable & Three Chimneys Farm's King Fury (Curlin) took advantage of a fast early pace in Saturday's GIII Stonestreet Lexington S. over a sloppy Keeneland main track and closed off fastest of all to cause an 18-1 upset, earning 20 points towards a potential appearance in the GI Kentucky Derby in three weeks' time. A maiden winner at first asking over a distance of ground at Churchill Sept. 3, King Fury could not overcome a wide trip when eighth of nine behind Essential Quality (Tapit) in the GI...

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