(Mr. Monomoy / Photo by Holly M. Smith)
From the Fair Grounds Media Team:
Trainer Brad Cox has a Longines Kentucky Oaks (G1) and three Breeders’ Cup victories on his resume, and in 2019 he was a finalist for an Eclipse Award. Following Saturday’s victory in the first division of the Risen Star (G2) presented by Lamarque Ford-Lincoln with Madaket Stables, Michael Dubb, and Doheny Racing’s Mr. Monomoy, it looks like a first ever Kentucky Derby (G1) presented by Woodford Reserve starter is in his immediate future.
Never before run at 1 1/8 miles, the Risen Star was split for the first time since the Kentucky Derby points system was implemented in 2013. Both divisions carried a $400,000 purse and offered 85 (50-20-10-5) Kentucky Derby points.
Jockey Florent Geroux — Mr. Monomoy (1st):
“We had a really good start out of the gate,” jockey Florent Geroux said of the son of Palace Malice. “I was thinking about stalking, but when I saw no one was really going for the lead I took advantage and went for it. It worked really nicely for me. He’s still learning but he showed me a lot today, I’m really happy with him.”
Trainer Brad Cox — Mr. Monomoy:
Following a third place run in Lecomte over 1 1/16 miles last month, Cox openly questioned his colt’s ability to run successfully over a distance of ground, but Mr. Monomoy flipped that narrative on Saturday.
“He galloped out well the last time (in the Lecomte) which helped me to think he could get this distance,” Cox said. “I thought the draw today (post nine) gave him the opportunity to break and clear if he wanted, and obviously he was willing to do it. Florent put him in a great spot and he stepped up to the plate today and proved that he belongs.”
“It will probably be one more race before the (Kentucky) Derby,” Cox continued. “What race that will be, we don’t know yet. We just have to see how he comes out of it, see what other horses run in the next few weeks, and see how everything unfolds. We’re really happy with him.”
Jockey Julien Leparoux — Enforceable (2nd):
Off a step slow and wide on both turns, Enforceable closed well to be second. He now has 33 Derby points, which in most years would earn him a spot in the 20-horse starting gate.
“He ran a great race,” jockey Julien Leparoux said. “There wasn’t really any pace and the winner was on an easy lead. My horse responded when I asked and put in a really good run down the lane. I’m happy with how he ran and look forward to having him go longer in distance.”