Mott Doubles Up For Friday’s Maker’s 46 Mile
Keeneland Press Release
Four trainers have won the Maker’s 46 Mile (G1) twice. On Friday, Hall of Fame conditioner Bill Mott will try to become the first to win the race three times when he sends out Ballagh Rocks and Forge (GB).
Mott, who won the race with Ganges in 1993 and Mr. Sidney in 2009, is scheduled to be here Thursday. “Hall of Fame decision to leave me here in the snow,” quipped son Riley Mott, who is overseeing the barn here, on Monday.
Owned by Donegal Racing and Head of Plains Partners, Ballagh Rocks arrived at Keeneland on Monday from Payson Park in South Florida.
The 5-year-old Stormy Atlantic horse was fourth in the Maker’s 46 Mile last year and in the fall was third in the Shadwell Turf (G1), beaten a half-length in both.
“He is doing really well and has been training well,” Riley Mott said. “He runs well fresh and gives us a lot of confidence.”
Ballagh Rocks has not run since finishing ninth, beaten three lengths, in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (G1) in November at Del Mar.
“He has had a few rough trips and in the Breeders’ Cup, he didn’t break and got stuck on the inside,” Mott said. “He is a bit of an overachiever and it has been nice to watch him progress since he was a baby.”
Juddmonte Farms’ homebred Forge comes into Friday’s race off a seventh-place finish in the Mervin Muniz Memorial (G2) at Fair Grounds on March 24.
“He has lots of talent but he’s just not consistent,” Mott said. “He needs to string good races together. In the Muniz, he didn’t get the cover we wanted. He runs better covered up where he can produce his run late. If we get the trip we like, we think he is good enough.”