Frank and Ginny Wright will be at Pimlico Race Course today watching the simulcast of the Wood Memorial from Aqueduct, along with about 10,000 other racing fans.
But there's one difference.
The Wrights own part of one of the starters, the Saratoga Six colt Surely Six, who is trained locally by Ben Perkins Jr.
"But even if the horse runs well, he's not going to the Kentucky Derby," Frank Wright said. "Benny [Perkins] is going to be looking for another spot."
The Wrights, who operate Huntingfields Farm near Hampstead, are staying close to home because they are planning a family party for the Easter holiday.
"But just because we're not going to Aqueduct, doesn't mean we don't think he'll win. We think Surely Six has got a heckuva chance," Wright added.
Surely Six was nipped at the wire in his last start by Pie in Your Eye in the Cherry Hill Mile. The horse ran into a blind switch on the backstretch, was eased back and then had to circle the field.
"Even the jockey [Rick Wilson] came back afterward and said he gave him a horrible ride," Wright said. "So we think we've got a good shot in the Wood. He will be long odds, but it's a wide-open race. We would have liked a little better post position (than the 9-hole), but Benny doesn't seem too upset about it."
The Wrights own 25 percent of Surely Six, along with Baltimoreans Leslie Legum and Joseph Keelty and Herb Moelis of Chesapeake City.
Luramore, another of the partnership's horses, runs in today's Althea Stakes, the third race on Aqueduct's Wood Memorial card.
Wright said the partnership turned down $500,000 for Surely Six last October.
"Benny always thought there was something special about this horse. He urged us to keep him, and we did," Wright said.
The Wrights have had a busy spring. They won the Mister Diz Stakes March 15 at Laurel with North Carroll, but the colt missed the subsequent Hirsch Jacobs Stakes at Pimlico.
"He tore a muscle in his shoulder," Wright said. "But he's back in training and is set to work on Tuesday."
The Wrights have eight broodmares. In addition to breeding to Maryland stallions, they bred three mares in Kentucky this year. Their multiple-stakes-winning mare, Valay Maid, has been declared in foal to Miswaki. Two of their other mares have been bred to Broad Brush and Temperence Hill.
NOTES: With the defection of Dash For Dotty and Surely Six, there are now three horses with local connections that could run in the May 2 Kentucky Derby. They are Technology, who is at Churchill Downs; Pie in Your Eye, who starts today in the Wood Memorial, and John The Bold, who runs at Pimlico next weekend in the Federico Tesio Stakes. . . . Bowie-based 2-year-old Taking Risks, a son of Two Punch, finished fourth at Keeneland on Thursday in his first start. He is owned and trained by Sandra Stancer. . . . The first starter from the first crop of Maryland stallion Waquoit won his first race at Aqueduct on Thursday. The colt is named Exclusive Zone, and is trained by Linda Rice. . . . Vinnie Blengs is expected to ship his 14-horse Florida string back to Maryland in two weeks. Blengs has 20 horses at Laurel.