Bill Donovan has chosen a local jockey, Tommy Turner, 26, to ride Dash For Dotty in the Preakness May 16.
Not only will Turner have his first Preakness mount, he also will be aboard Diamond Duo, the Donovan-trained 3-year-old filly, in the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes May 15.
"I figured, why not go with the local boy?" Donovan said. "When I told him yesterday morning, he was on Cloud 9. Tommy has been riding for me and doing good, so why change?"
Donovan had hired nationally known jockeys such as Craig Perret and Eddie Delahoussaye to ride Dash For Dotty in his past few starts. Delahoussaye was on the gelding when the horse finished a disappointing ninth in his last start in the Blue Grass Stakes.
Donovan acknowledges that Dash For Dotty will be a Preakness long shot.
"And -- who knows? -- we might not even draw in if there is an overflow field. My horse has $94,000 in earnings," he said. "Will that be enough to get us in?"
Only 14 horses can run in the Preakness. Starters are chosen on their total career earnings.
Donovan said the horse's owner, Henry Rosenberg Jr., chief operating officer of Crown Central Petroleum, is eager to run Dash For Dotty.
"He is a local guy. He's proud of his horse, and he wants him to do it," Donovan said.
"Henry is a class act. He's not forcing me to run. He asked me to run the horse if at all possible. How can you turn down someone like that?
"I was thinking about looking for an easier spot. But it's hard not to run when you have a horse that's eligible and that's sound. If we don't win, we'll laugh about it and still have a good time. It's going to be two weeks of fun."
Donovan seemed particularly pleased that Diamond Duo, ridden by Turner, won a $35,000 prep for the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes Saturday at Pimlico.
"It was the filly's first start in nearly two months," Donovan said. "She ran 1 1/16 miles in 1 minute, 44 seconds and won by four lengths. She yoked those horses."
Diamond Duo is owned by Baltimorean Harriet Finkelstein.
Donovan made his mark by training $2 million earner Lost Code. He said that Lost Code's first starter, a 2-year-old filly named Victory Sound, recently won her first start at Golden Gate Fields in California.
Donovan has eight Lost Code 2-year-olds in training at Pimlico.
* Technology, the second choice in the Kentucky Derby, who finished 10th, was out for a jog and a light canter at Pimlico yesterday morning.
The horse's trainer, Sonny Hine, is not due to arrive until tonight or tomorrow morning.
Leslie Legum, the Baltimore businessman who owns 20 percent of the horse, said he is disappointed by the horse's poor Derby showing.
"He didn't get out of the gate, and then he was checked twice," Legum said. "But everybody has their excuses. I just feel sorry for the people who bet on him. I'm glad I don't have to pay them back."
Legum said he sat in a box at the Derby in front of rap star Hammer and adjacent to Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid al Maktoum, co-owner of beaten favorite Arazi. "We were right in there with all the bigwigs," Legum said.
Legum noted that Hansel, 10th-place finisher in last year's Derby, rebounded and won the Preakness. "Maybe we can do the same thing," he said.
NOTES: Lil E. Tee, Casual Lies and Dance Floor, the first three Derby finishers, will arrive on the same plane from Louisville at Baltimore-Washington International Airport Monday afternoon. . . . A.P. Indy trotted sound at Churchill Downs yesterday and goes to the track for a gallop today. Trainer Neil Drysdale said if the colt progresses, he will breeze him this weekend. "Then we'll see xTC where we stand in regard to the Preakness," he said. . . . Tim Jolley, son of trainer LeRoy Jolley, is at Pimlico taking care of Conte di Savoya. The fourth-place Derby finisher is taking it easy for a few days and will resume training tomorrow.