Saturday, April 4, 2009


Santa Anita Park press release.

The Pamplemousse, 9-5 morning line favorite for today’s Santa Anita Derby, was declared a stakes scratch shortly after 10 a.m. Saturday.

“Dr. (Jill) Bailey (D.V.M. representing the Los Angeles Turf Club), during her pre-race examination, identified an issue that she brought to the attention of (trainer) Julio (Canani),” explained Dr. Rick Arthur, Equine Medical Director for the California Horse Racing Board in a telephone press conference in Santa Anita’s press box around 11 a.m.

“Julio had his veterinarian, Dr. Helmuth von Bluecher, look at the horse, and agreed there was an issue that needed further diagnostics, and they scratched the horse, because what needed to be done couldn’t be done between now and race time (post time for the Santa Anita Derby was listed at 2:40 p.m.),” Arthur continued. “Julio erred on the side of the horse, which they should have done, and in line with the type of horseman he (Canani) is.”

Co-owner Alex Solis II confirmed that a soft-tissue issue necessitated the scratch. “The tendon had a little heat and as a result, Julio decided to scratch him. We’ll scan the tendon and evaluate it and go from there,” he said. “We’re not going to take any chances with him.”

Arthur reiterated that although Bailey, von Bluecher and himself agreed there was an issue with the tendon. “This is a stakes scratch. He is not on the vet’s list, and frankly, I wouldn’t talk about the specifics of anything like that. It’s inappropriate for obvious reasons . . . You can scratch a horse in stakes races up to an hour before post time . . . Julio still has goals for this horse.”

Arthur said Dr. Bailey’s examination “probably was a little after seven (a.m.), and Dr. von Bleucher probably got to the barn about 9:30. They sent the horse out (to the track) and trained and looked at the horse a little bit later. Julio understands what Dr. Bailey’s concern was, and when it was pointed out to him, he became concerned as well, so I think everything worked the way it was supposed to work.

“Julio obviously is terribly, terribly disappointed . . . We’ve been in this game long enough to know that the Derby trail breaks a lot of hearts.”


Sally said...

So sad... like a bad dream... And when you saw how the race played out, he would have won it easily... Here's hoping it's not a serious injury.

Janosita said...

I agree with you, Sally. The Pamplemousse could have beaten that field - more so the way they ran (not fast).

The_Knight_Sky said...

I beg to differ. Which event came first?

The scratch of Z-Day (the rabbit) or The Pamplemousse at 10 am?

Had The Pamplemousse stayed in the race
the uncoupled (Zayat owned) entrymate Z-Day also would have not scratched out.

Pioneer of the Nile would have had to do lot less running on the backside thus saving energy for a strong late kick to wear down everyone.

To his credit, Pioneer of the Nile once again
showed his talent by laying much closer to the pace than he ever had in the Santa Anita Derby.

Janosita said...

Putting in a rabbit is a pathetic strategy, not speaking to the sportsmanship of Zayat Stables - what is more it shows that they know the Mousse is better - they feared him.

Is the Pioneer were as good as the Mousse, the Pioneer would not need to have a rabbit help him win.

Anonymous said...

I just saw that the LA times says the Pamplemousse will be sidelined for months due to his tendon injury. AP cites Alex Solis Jr saying that he will not run in the KY derby. What a shame. What a disappointment. It is extremely good that they will not force him - I still think he could win - and so risk his breakdown. But it is a shame for racing lovers that this had to happen.

Anonymous said...

Like everybody says,it´s a shame that The Pampamousse was out the race at the last minute,but honestly,I just don´t think that he would it be able to beat Pioneerof the Nile in the Santa Anita Derby. He just showed what a good horse he is by being,in a paceless race,close to the pace,take the lead in back stretch and having enough in the tank to put them away.

A Pampamousse fan.

Mary Forney's Blog said...

It was a true disappointment to me when The Pamplemousse scratched. But I have to give credit to all those concerned who had to make a tough decision and did what they felt was the right thing for the horse -- trainer Julio Canani, the owners including Alex Solis Jr., the veterinarians involved, and track management at Santa Anita. Everyone had a lot to lose, but they handled the situation with integrity.

zraces said...

Everyone was disappointed when he scratched, but had he run and eased on the backstretch, 50,000 plus fans or a good percentage of them would have been out their bets. The system works most of the time.

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