Donegal’s Keen Ice Under Consideration For Pegasus World Cup

by | 11.12.2016 | 5:16pm
Keen Ice and Javier Castellano ended American Pharoah's eight-race winning streak in the 2015 Travers

Following a late-closing third-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Classic last weekend, Donegal Racing's Keen Ice is being considered for a try in the $12 million Pegasus World Cup on Jan. 28 at Gulfstream Park, according to The Todd Pletcher trainee was the only horse to defeat American Pharoah during his record-setting 2015 season, but struggled through his early 2016 campaign, later diagnosed with a hairline fracture in his hind cannon bone.

The 4-year-old son of Curlin returned to the races in a conditioned allowance at Belmont Park last month, finishing third in the one-turn mile event. He came into the Breeders' Cup as a 32-1 longshot, but nosed out the consistent Hoppertunity for third in the Classic, beaten 11 1/4 lengths by Arrogate, to earn $540,000. Despite having won only two races in his career, Keen Ice has earned more than $2.3 million.

“He was probably one race short of having him totally ready to peak (in the Classic),” Pletcher said. “At the same time I thought he ran well. At the end of the day, it was like winning a million-dollar race.”

While Donegal does not own a slot in the race, it is very likely that they would be able to purchase one. Keen Ice would be up against California Chrome and Hoppertunity in the Pegasus, as well as a possible Arrogate and Highland Reel.

  • Audrey Gulla

    Well, if they have that kind of money to spend……it might have been better spent @ the Keeneland Sales……just sayin…..

    • Memories of Puchi

      …and you are qualified to criticize Pletcher and Donegal Racing how? Please tell me how many Grade 1 race winners you have owned and raced or bred or trained?

      • BeastBob

        Keen Ice would have been a 2016 BCC winner if Chrome and Arrogate weren’t in it.

        • David Juffet

          That’s a big if huh? He’s a plodder.

      • Audrey Gulla

        I know the election has ended, but this is still the good ole US . Of A… such, free speech is still protected. What I said is just my opinion, nothing more. And I.m still entitled to it….at least for now..

        • Memories of Puchi

          sure. everybody is entitled but just because you can, doesn’t mean you should LOL

          • Audrey Gulla

            Right back atcha!

    • David

      Agree, $1M to enter in race. 2 or 3 colts at Keenland sounds better investment.

      • Audrey Gulla

        That’s how I feel. Better to put Keen Ice into a race he has an actual chance to win. Facing CC?..I don’t think so. And as of yet Arrogate Isn’t committed. With him in it would be a double damn. Remember that the race slots were purchased for 1 mil…they’ll certainly be resold for a nice profit!… many zeros in a mil anyway?

        • Chris Miskell

          He doesn’t have to win the race to make money on the day. He didn’t have a chance in hell of winning the Classic and earned a tidy profit on the day. He picked up $540,000 for showing and even deducting the $150,000 entry fees and shipping, they came out at least $350,000 in the black.

          • Audrey Gulla

            You’re correct of course. No horse wins all the time & I forget that 2nd, 3rd & 4th can see some nice returns. $250,000 should help him recoup nicely to race successfully again…..I hold fondness for AP’s contemporaries & want to see them all do well. Naive I suspect, but there it is…

          • Chris Miskell

            I didn’t think he had a shot to hit the board, but he proved me wrong.

          • Audrey Gulla

            You know initially I thought the same, but last year he was no slouch…3rd in the Belmont & who can forget his 2nd in the Haskell! I remember BB laughingly relating to a reporter how he wanted to yell to Victor: “Hey look behind you there’s a horse coming!”…….While the Travers tends to focus on AP’ s unfortunate loss, KI beat that whole field. His 4th in the BC still pretty good….I really didn’t follow him this year( starry eyed with Nyquist) but was so happy he’s still racing & hope he sees another year!

  • john

    You can dream!!!

  • David Juffet

    He’s eligible for NW of 2. He has 2 wins in 18 starts. Reminds me of Zito’s Fast Falcon. Both are plodders. Picked up a few fat checks that’s it.

    • Bryan Langlois

      The way the Pegasus Cup is shaping up right now…if something happens to Arrogate and/or Chrome and they can’t make it…that is pretty much the type of horse you are going to get entered :)

      • David Juffet

        Ok I get your thought.

      • West wind

        Alan Jerkens: never let one horse scare you off – I doubt Arrogate goes.

  • Richard C

    War Story is back at Parx and breezed six furlongs from the gate this morning in 1:15.97 — maybe a successful crowdfunding campaign will get him into the Pegasus!

  • Michael Infurna

    Exactly, another schlep along check to add to Pletchers pile!!

  • Bev

    ICEMAN………great job in the BCC…….the front two horses, Chrome and Arrogate were so far ahead I lost track of WHO was back there……..when I heard Keen Ice took THIRD beating out Hoppertunity who ALWAYS has taken second or third behind Chrome………I was so excited. Good job Ice. hmmmm….Pegasus?? Well, be safe kiddo. Good to see you back chasing Chrome.

    • Meydan Rocks

      In Hopportunity’s defense, he prefers the deeper east coast tracks where the men are good looking and the women are strong and the children are above average! Let’s see Keen Ice face him there. HA!

      • Chris Miskell

        The last time I checked, Lake Woebegone doesn’t have a track, so Hop may be out of luck for anything more than his usual third or fourth place…

        • Meydan Rocks

          Funny! I’ll have to check if they pay good money for the “usual third or fourth place” positions. I am sorely lacking in that position in my future barn. :-)

      • paul adams

        What he prefers is avoiding the top 2 in CA. The track surface is nonsense

        • Meydan Rocks

          Tomatoes, tomatos. Avoiding making cash or making cash. Now that is the question ESPECIALLY from an owner’s standpoint. Or would that be from a horse racing stand point. And you call making cash nonsense? Aaaaaah for the joys of life ey?

  • Mary (M.R.) Perdue

    Purse for third place is 1M. 2nd is 1.75M. Plus slot holders share in net parimutuel handle as well as media rights for the event. If Keen Ice came in third they’d make $.

    • talkingman17

      I think they get $375,000 even if you finish last.

  • Al Milano

    I closed out my BC pick 4 with the two real contenders and with Keen Ice, just in case. It would have been a $21,000 payoff if this one got up, but it was never a possibility.

    His numbers are just not that good whatever Pletcher says in this article. And they won’t be good enough to warrant paying his way into Stronach’s race.

    Save the money.

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