Kentucky Derby Profile: Mo Donegal

Mo Donegal is 2/2 at Aqueduct. Can he compete away from the NYRA?
Mo Donegal is 2/2 at Aqueduct. Can he compete away from the NYRA?

Mo Donegal has excellent connections but is he in the mix for Kentucky Derby glory? JN Campbell is skeptical...

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Mo Donny-gal … correct pronunciation clarified … is part of the Donegal Racing family. With a strong contingent of investors, they are looking to come to Louisville, and see their stock rise in the 148th Kentucky Derby. HOF trainer Todd Pletcher watched his colt by Uncle Mo, who sold at the Keeneland September Sale in 2020 for $250k, break his maiden at Belmont in his 2nd career race.

Coming into the Remsen S. (G2) the tote told the story … Zandon and Mo Donegal would be co-favorites. Piloted by Irad Ortiz, the clan had to sweat out an inquiry, as the short-priced runners bumped late in the race. In the end, it was Pletcher’s victory. The connections had one of the top Derby hopefuls going into 2022. The connections then repaired to Pletcher’s southern base in Florida at Gulfstream Park with the intent of taking on the locals in the Holy Bull (G3). In typical fashion, the colt broke slowly, and took most of the race to catch up to the leaders.

In the end, it was White Abarrio and Simplification that finished 1-2. Shipping from the sun, up to the Empire State, Pletcher targeted the Grade 2 Wood Memorial, and the colt was up against a field that included Chad Brown’s Early Voting, and Steve Asmussen’s Morello.

As the 2nd choice and with Joel Rosario in the irons, the 3-yr-old moved late, winning by a neck over Brown’s entry. The late gears are clearly his best weapon, and advancing speed figs. will entice many a bettor. Irad Ortiz gets the call, replacing Rosario, since he will be riding Epicenter. Having an aggressive rider like him could be a catalyst. The problem is the pace, which could be controlled up front. Like other late-running colts, if you encounter traffic, then it makes it doubly hard to get to the front before the wire. I will be using this runner underneath, but I cannot see him winning the Derby, despite the connections.

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Kentucky Derby 2022

Kentucky Derby 2022 Racecard

10
PP 10

Zandon

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: F. Prat /
  • Trainer: C. Brown /
Morning Line Odds
3
PP 3

Epicenter

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Rosario /
  • Trainer: S. Asmussen /
Morning Line Odds
6
PP 6

Messier

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Velazquez /
  • Trainer: T. Yakteen /
Morning Line Odds
1
PP 1

Mo Donegal

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: I. Ortiz Jr. /
  • Trainer: T. Pletcher /
15
PP 15

White Abarrio

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: T. Gaffalione /
  • Trainer: S. Joseph Jr. /
12
PP 12

Taiba

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: M. Smith /
  • Trainer: T. Yakteen /
8
PP 8

Charge It

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: L. Saez /
  • Trainer: T. Pletcher /
13
PP 13

Simplification

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: J. Ortiz /
  • Trainer: A. Sano /
7
PP 7

Crown Pride

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: C. Lemaire /
  • Trainer: K. Shintani /
16
PP 16

Cyberknife

  • Age: 3 /
  • Jockey: F. Geroux /
  • Trainer: B. Cox /
Show All Runners
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