Friday Furlong: Week 2

Friday Furlong: Week 2
Signalman prepares at Churchill Downs (Source: kentuckyderby.com)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - The Kentucky Derby is just over nine weeks away, and one of the big Derby prep races is taking place this Saturday.

Today we’re prepping for the Fountain of Youth and talking about Signalman. Coming off a win in the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club, Signalman is going off at 9-2 odds in the Fountain of Youth. Trainer Kenny McPeek ran a strong third in the Breeders Cup Juvenile and will look to claim part of the 85 Derby qualifying points up for grab this weekend.

He’s by General Quarters and out of Trip South… and he’s been on the board in all five career starts.

Derby expert and Troubleshooter John Boel shared a story about his sire, General Quarters and beloved trainer Tom McCarthy, and their special day at Derby 135. Boel called it one of his favorite storylines from his years of Derby coverage.

General Quarters was the Derby darling in 2009. Tom McCarthy was a retired educator who was both the horse’s owner and trainer. General Quarters was the only horse in Tom’s barn. He qualified for the Derby by winning the Bluegrass Stakes as the longest shot in the field. General Quarters’ and McCarthy’s story won him the hearts of many Derby fans, but he finished 10th in Derby 135.

Interestingly, though General Quarters finished tenth in the Derby, he came back the next year on Derby Day and won the Grade 1 Turf Classic.

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The Fountain of Youth will give us a better look at several possible Derby runners. Another horse to keep your eye on Saturday at Gulfstream is Bill Mott’s Hidden Scroll.

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