2011 PREAKNESS - SHACKLEFORD!!!
Shackleford dueled for the early lead with Flashpoint through a blistering opening quarter-mile in :22.69 but the pace slowed considerably in the second quarter as the duo covered a half-mile in :46.87. That slight breather might have made the difference for Shackleford, who put away Flashpoint on the final turn in the 1 3/16-mile race and spurted clear. Animal Kingdom, who was second to last early under John Velazqeuz, closed with a steady charge in the stretch and cut into Shackleford's lead but could not get past the winner. Velazquez said Animal Kingdom did not break as well as he did in the Derby and did not like having dirt kicked in his face. Shackleford covered the distance in 1:56.27 on a track rated as fast under Jesus Castanon for his first career graded stakes win. He finished second in the Florida Derby (G1) and fourth in the Kentucky Derby in his two previous starts for trainer Dale Romans and owners Mike Lauffer and WD Cubbedge. Shackleford's win ended Animal Kingdom's Triple Crown bid. Affirmed in 1978 is the last three-year-old to sweep the three US classics. Animal Kingdom's trainer, Graham Motion, said he was pleased with the Derby winner's effort. "He ran huge today, it just looked like he needed another sixteenth [of a mile]," Motion said. "Give credit to Dale [Romans] and his horse, [Shackleford] ran a heck of a race." Astrology ran a big race to finish third. Florida Derby winner Dialed In closed willingly for fourth, followed by Dance City.
Tags: Shackleford, Astrology, Dialed, In, Dance, City, Flashpoint, Animal, Kingdom, John, Velazqeuz, racing, kentucky, derby, preakness, stakes, belmont, triple, crown, horse, Florida, 2011
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