With 31 points, ranking 21st on the Kentucky Derby leaderboard, trainer Mark Hennig is on the outside looking in with graded stakes placed Bourbon War for a potential start in the Grade 1 $3 million Kentucky Derby on May 4 at Churchill Downs.
Owned by Bourbon Lane Stable and Lake Star Stable, the regally-bred son of Tapit was fourth last time out in the Grade 1 Florida Derby on March 30 at Gulfstream Park, where he distantly chased a slow pace and began making up ground at the far turn but was unable to catch eventual gate-to-wire winner Maximum Security. His prior start was a late-closing runner-up finish behind Code of Honor in the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth on February 22 at the South Florida oval.
Bourbon War fell from 20th to 21st in the standings when Japanese-bred and based Master Fencer – leader on Japan's Road to the Kentucky Derby – accepted an automatic berth in the starting gate for the First Saturday in May.
“He is doing wonderful,” Hennig said of Bourbon War. “We're just going to kind of sit back this week and watch what happens in the Arkansas Derby and the Lexington and just see how much further we've dropped in the standings. We'll figure it out after that.”
Bourbon War is the first foal out of the Grade 1 winning Artie Schiller broodmare My Conquestadory – a graded stakes winner over turf and all-weather surfaces. His full-sister sold for $1.3 million on Tuesday afternoon at Keeneland's April Two-Year-Olds in Training Sale where she was the sale topper.
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