Essential Quality To Return To Churchill Downs Monday

Louisville-native trainer Brad Cox recorded arguably the biggest win in his young career Saturday when Godolphin’s champion colt Essential Quality conquered the third jewel of the Triple Crown – the $1.5 million Grade 1 Belmont Stakes. The Tapit colt is scheduled to return to his home stall at Churchill Downs’ Barn 22 Monday afternoon.

“We’re so thrilled for this horse,” Cox said. “He showed why he’s a champion. A lot of people have worked very hard to get this victory and we are so thankful.”

“With Tapit on the top side of his pedigree, we really thought he would get the mile-and-a-half when given the opportunity. We always thought he had the ability. After the Derby, you just have to see what it takes out of them. It’s a demanding race as well as the Belmont. We were watching him for a week or so. We put our heads together and felt like if we were going to keep him in training we might as well run him. I really don’t think I could keep his feet on the ground the next couple of months without keeping him on some type of breeze schedule. He’s a very smart horse. He has a lot of energy but he lets you know when he’s ready to run.”

Essential Quality remained in New York on Sunday with several of his Kentucky-based stablemates. They are scheduled to van about 14 hours to Louisville at 2 a.m. Monday.

Essential Quality improved his record to six wins from just seven starts with robust purse earnings of $3,215,144.

Prior to the Belmont Stakes, Essential Quality was the 5-2 post-time favorite in the $3 million Grade 1 Kentucky Derby presented by Woodford Reserve where he crossed the wire fourth behind Medina Spirit, Mandaloun, and Hot Rod Charlie.

Mandaloun, a stablemate to Essential Quality, worked five furlongs in :59.40 early Sunday morning at Churchill Downs with jockey Florent Geroux aboard. Owned by Juddmonte, Mandaloun is scheduled to run in next Sunday’s $150,000 Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth as a prep to the $1 million Grade 1 Haskell Stakes on July 17.

The post Essential Quality To Return To Churchill Downs Monday appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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