Premier Pegasus out of Santa Anita Derby
Early favorite Premier Pegasus is out of the Santa Anita Derby on Saturday because of a leg injury.
The colt was the 8-5 favorite on the morning line in the $1 million prep for next month's Kentucky Derby.
Santa Anita spokesman Mike Willman said owner and trainer Myung Kwon Cho called the racing office Thursday afternoon to say Premier Pegasus wouldn't run. There were no immediate details available on the type of injury or how it might affect the colt's racing future.
Premier Pegasus won the San Felipe Stakes by a record 7-3/4 lengths last month, and has four wins in five career races with earnings of $293,400.
Two years ago, the Santa Anita Derby lost early favorite The Pamplemousse on the morning of the race when he was scratched because of a leg injury.
That leaves 10 horses for the 1-1/8-mile race, including 4-1 second choice Jaycito, second to Premier Pegasus in the San Felipe, and 9-2 third choice Silver Medallion, who won the El Camino Real Derby.
The injury was surely a blow to Cho, a 68-year-old South Korea native who has only six horses in his stable. Besides owning and training Premier Pegasus, he also bred the colt and was eagerly anticipating having his first horse in the Kentucky Derby since 1998.