The connections of Arkansas Derby runner-up Quip have withdrawn the colt from the Derby field, according to Darren Rogers, senior director of communications and media services for Churchill Downs. That means Combatant makes the field.
Quip, trained by Rodolphe Brisset and owned by WinStar Farm, China Hose Club international and S.F. Racing, had 90 qualifying points after winning the Tampa Bay Derby and finishing second in the Arkansas Derby. WinStar CEO Elliott Walden told the Daily Racing Form Quip needed a little more time, and he would be pointed for the Preakness.
Combatant, trained by Steve Asmussen and owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds and Willis Horton Racing, has one victory from seven starts but accumulated 32 points by finishing second in the Southwest Stakes, third in the Rebel and fourth in the Arkansas Derby. Ricardo Santana, Jr. will get the mount.
The next horse that could get into the field with another defection is Instilled Regard, who has 29 points. The son of Arch trained Jerry Hollendorfer and owned by OXO Equine (Larry Best), won the Lecomte Stakes in January, then finished fourth in both the Risen Star and the Santa Anita Derby.
A spot could open up after it was reported Monday that Gronkowski had a “minor setback” that might keep him from shipping overseas to run in the Derby. An update is expected tomorrow.
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