Spendthrift Farm's colors will be part of the May 5th Kentucky Derby after Bolt d'Oro's owner/trainer Mick Ruis decided to honor Spendthrift owner B. Wayne Hughes for his help in making future stallion arrangements for the colt.
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Bolt d'Oro, along with Free Drop Billy, are both future Spendthrift stallions once their racing careers are completed.
"Mr. Hughes is 85 years old and I'm 57, and I just wanted to do it for him," Ruis said. "I will speak to the Churchill Downs stewards, and whatever has to be done to make this happen, we will do."
Mark Toothaker of Spendthrift Farm added, "Mr. Hughes had secured the breeding rights to the colt after his victory in the Del Mar Futurity (G1). Mick retained 100% of the racing rights, while selling 50% of the breeding rights to Mr. Hughes. He's been such a tremendous partner, Mick wanted to do something special for him. Mr. Hughes was very touched and heartfelt when he learned what Mick was going to do."
Bolt d'Oro's connections also got good news at Tuesday's Derby post position draw, when the colt was assigned post 11 in the 20 horse field.
“It’s ironic. We had 11 and Good Magic had the 6 in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. We drew the same numbers. That’s kind of fun. I’m fine where we are. That’s good,” said Ruis.
Bolt d'Oro was a two-time Grade 1 winner at two and has been worse than second only once in six career starts. Three-time Kentucky Derby winner Victor Espinoza will ride the son of Medaglia d'Oro on Saturday.
Free Drop Billy is the newest addition to the Spendthrift roster, with the farm just making the announcement on Monday. The colt is owned by Albaugh Family Stables, also the owner of Spendthrift's young stallion Brody's Cause.
“We are delighted to be working with the Albaugh family again to stand Free Drop Billy,” said Ned Toffey, General Manager at Spendthrift Farm. “He's a great-looking horse who's proven to be talented, precocious and consistent, and he's from a proven sire's family. He's a very complete stallion prospect, and he'll make a great addition to our roster.”
As far as the Run for the Roses, the late-running Free Drop Billy drew post 2 for his trainer Dale Romans. Free Drop Billy has finished worse than third only once in his career, and won the Breeders' Futurity (G1) at two. He'll be ridden Saturday by Robby Albarado.