USA: Gun Runner’s Pegasus hopes hit by quarantine
Gun Runner made the breakthrough at Grade 1 level in November
Gun Runner's Pegasus hopes hit by quarantine
By Mark Scully 9:15AM 4 JAN 2017
GUN RUNNER could miss out on a start in the valuable Grade 1 Pegasus World Cup Invitational later this month after quarantine conditions were enforced at Fair Grounds Racecourse, where he is stabled.
The Steven Asmussen-trained Grade 1 winner is an intended runner in the $12 million showpiece, according to owner Winchell Thoroughbreds and Three Chimneys Farm but the four-year-old's participation in the race on January 28 looks to be under threat.
Gun Runner has been stabled at Fair Grounds since he landed the Grade 1 Clark Handicap at Churchill Downs in November but no horses are currently permitted to move in or out of the track after an area of it was placed under quarantine due to an EHV-1 (equine herpes virus) outbreak.
That could impact on Gun Runner's travel plans to Gulfstream Park in South Florida and also on his owner's ability to strike a deal with an owner of a starting slot in the race, which they do not yet have.
Despite the complication, Winchell Thoroughbreds manager David Fiske says his team is still preparing as though they are going to get the green light to run in the race.
"We're just kind of monitoring the quarantine as it seems to change day by day," Fiske told Bloodhorse. "We keep getting inquiries and proposals from gate owners but they're all aware of the situation now, too, so they're kind of apprehensive.
"I just talked to Steve a little while ago trying to get a sense of when our drop dead date [for the Pegasus] would be but I'm not sure we've gotten there yet.
"We're still preparing him like he's going to go. Unless some state vet or someone tells us we're not going, we're kind of thinking that we are.
"If the quarantine thing works out and if we can work out a deal with somebody that makes some sense – which is a lot harder than you would think – he'll go. But there are a lot of question marks still."
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