Connections hoping Keepmeinmind will show his worth Saturday

May 14, 2021

BALTIMORE, Md.- Keepmeinmind marks the first Preakness appearance for both trainer Robertino Diodoro and jockey David Cohen.

Diodoro knows Keepmeinmind, a late-running seventh in the Kentucky Derby, probably will need a good setup to hit the board for the first time this year and to win for the first time since the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) at Churchill Downs Nov. 2. But he expects Keepmeinmind is sitting on a big performance.

“What needs to happen is what it looks like is going to happen on paper,” Diodoro said. “We just need it to happen on dirt now, where we need Midnight Bourbon, we need both of [trainer Bob] Baffert’s horses (to go out to the lead) to get a little pace to run out. But definitely with his running style, we need a pace to run at.”

Before Keepmeinmind ran in the May 1 Kentucky Derby (G1), Ned Toffey said it was just a matter of time before the colt reaffirmed why Spendthrift Farm bought part-ownership following his victory in the Kentucky Jockey Club. Spendthrift is partners with Cypress Creek Equine and Arnold Bennewith.

“If you look at him, he doesn’t look like a horse that would be a good 2-year-old and that would be it,” said Toffey, Spendthrift Farm’s general manager. “We saw so much potential as a 2-year-old, he ran some nice races. He ran a very nice race at Churchill Downs and showed he could run with these horses [finishing third] in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile [G1; at Keeneland]. If you look at him, he’s a big stretchy horse and really looks like he could do some more maturing. He’s a long drink of water now. He’s a beautiful animal, but I can see this horse the second half of the year being formidable.”

Diodoro took the blinkers off Keepmeinmind for the Derby. Toffey is among those extremely encouraged by that effort, when Keepmeinmind closed from last to come in seventh.

“I think he confirmed in the Derby that he’s a horse that wants to come from well off the pace,” he said. “That was the approach Robertino wanted to take: let him come out of the gate, find his stride and make a run. He really did that well in the Derby. Of course, that’s one of the problems when you’re a come-from-behind horse in the Derby in a 20-horse field. You’re probably going to be forced wide. Obviously, being wide didn’t help his chances. It seems unlikely to think he was going to come away with a win there. But it looks like he could have been a touch in behind those first four horses, with a little luck on the turn.

“But I thought he ran a really good race,” he added. “He showed he belonged and that he can run with anybody. We’re looking forward to a good race from him in the Preakness.”

With merely a length separating the Kentucky Derby’s first and fourth-place finishers, Toffey said that victorious Medina Spirit, the Preakness’ 9-5 morning-line favorite, “hasn’t proven to be a dominant horse, but he’s certainly proven to be a very consistently good horse.”

Maryland Jockey Club Press Release

Keepmeinmind (Maryland Jockey Club)

@jonathanstettin another excellent day for the man who does it best. Thx Jon &@Tracking_Trips. Hoping you have some thoughts for tomorrow!

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