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Keeneland Connections Spotlight: Kentucky Derby Contenders

The five grade 1 prep races for the 138th Kentucky Derby were won by five different horses—Dullahan in the Toyota Bluegrass, Take Charge Indy in the Florida Derby, I’ll Have Another in the Santa Anita Derby, Gemologist in the Wood Memorial and Bodemeister in the Arkansas Derby. But there is one common thread for that group—all five were sold at Keeneland.

Dullahan, Bodemeister, Take Charge Indy and I’ll Have Another all were offered at the September sale while Gemologist was purchased at the 2009 November Breeding Stock Sale as a weanling.

Walt Robertson, Keeneland’s vice president of sales, proudly notes that 20 of the 28 graded stakes races on the Derby prep trail were won by graduates of the sales ring here.

“We’re going to have 20 in the gate and 12 of them are going to be ours,” Robertson noted.

“You just absolutely love it when your horses do well and to have that many different horses do that well for so many different people, and we’ve had some others that dropped off the Derby trail that we’ll see this summer, we’re talking about 15, 20 really, really nice horses that came through this sales ring,” he added.

This comes a year after the top three finishers in the Triple Crown races were all products of a Keeneland sale.

And eight of the fillies on the list for the Kentucky Oaks, including possible favorite Grace Hall, were also products of a sale at Keeneland.

“This weekend, we’ll have a lot of horses to cheer for,” Robertson said.

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