LOUISVILLE, Ky. — UAE Derby winner Thunder Snow will run in the Kentucky Derby next weekend, giving the Godolphin team a chance to end its 0 for 9 skid in America’s most famous race.
Trainer Saeed bin Suroor said Saturday that Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum decided to enter the colt in the May 6 race at Churchill Downs.
The Arabs have been trying to win the Kentucky Derby since 1999. Their best finish was fourth with Frosted in 2015 under American-born trainer Kiaran McLaughlin.
Ireland-bred Thunder Snow is sixth on the points list that determines the 20-horse field for the 1 \-mile Derby. His earnings of $1.6 million are the second-highest of any Derby runner.
Thunder Snow won the UAE Derby in March and the UAE 2000 Guineas in February. He was the top 2-year-old in Britain last year, where he ran on turf and won the Group 1 Criterium International.
Bin Suroor says the Kentucky Derby “is a great race and one of the few international contests Sheikh Mohammed and Godolphin have yet to win.”
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Thunder Snow, winner of the UAE 2000 Guineas, is among six 3-year-olds made eligible to compete in the Triple Crown series during the late nomination period.
The late nominees, which required a payment of $6,000 each, raise the total nominations to 425 for the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes. The late nomination period closed Monday. The early nomination window closed in January and required a payment of $600.
Ireland-bred Thunder Snow, owned by Godolphin Racing, is set to run Saturday in the $2 million UAE Derby in Dubai. The colt has three wins in seven career starts for trainer Saeed bin Suroor.
The other late nominees are Hollywood Handsome, trained by Dallas Stewart; More Than Words, trained by Charlie LoPresti; Parlor, trained by Eddie Kenneally; Rapid Dial, trained by Ingrid Mason; and Stretch’s Stone, trained by Bruce Levine.
Thoroughbreds that weren’t nominated to the Triple Crown have one final chance by paying a supplemental fee. The fee for the Derby is $200,000; $150,000 for the Preakness; and $75,000 for the Belmont.