Kentucky Derby winner Mage will miss the Breeders’ Cup Classic

Kentucky Derby winner Mage won’t run in the $6 million Breeders’ Cup Classic, his trainer said Sunday.

Mage had yet to travel to California for the world championships next weekend at Santa Anita.

“He presented a feverish state this morning and we have noticed symptoms of loss (of) appetite,” trainer Gustavo Delgado posted on social media.

“We were very enthusiastic about the condition that the horse was going through, and despite how disappointed we feel right now, we are confident in a speedy recovery.”

Ramiro Restrepo, a co-owner of Mage, also posted, “Timing stinks but lucky we caught it early. Can’t run at below 100%; horse comes first. Onwards to the Pegasus and his 4YO campaign.”

The Pegasus World Cup is Jan. 27 at Gulfstream.

Mage, who won the Derby at 15-1 odds, finished third in the Preakness, second in the Haskell and was last in the Travers, his most recent start on Aug. 26.

His defection leaves the Classic with just one Triple Crown race winner. Arcangelo won the Belmont and later the Travers. Preakness winner National Treasure is expected to run in the $1 million Dirt Mile on Saturday.

Also out of the Classic is Geaux Rocket Ride after the colt was injured during a workout Saturday at Santa Anita. Hall of Fame jockey Mike Smith, who was aboard, wasn’t hurt.

Geaux Rocket Ride sustained a condylar fracture, according to a statement from the Breeders’ Cup. It’s a repetitive strain injury that results in a fracture to the cannon bone above the fetlock due to large loads transmitted during high-speed workouts.

The loss of Mage and Geaux Rocket Ride clears the way for two others to join the maximum 14-horse field for the Classic when final entries are taken and post positions are drawn Monday.

Mage, with Javier Castellano aboard, win the 149th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 6. Silas Walker/
Mage, with Javier Castellano aboard, win the 149th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 6. Silas Walker/

2023 Breeders’ Cup pre-entries revealed. Expect a clear favorite in the Classic.

Mage’s magic in 2023 Kentucky Derby brightens a dark week for horse racing

Mage core owner Ramiro Restrepo ‘over the moon’ after Kentucky Derby victory

What was that thing on Derby winner Mage’s nose? And why one company was happy he wore it

‘It’s just magical.’ South Florida owners of 2023 Kentucky Derby winner Mage ecstatic.

Lightly raced Mage wins the 2023 Kentucky Derby for his connections from Venezuela