Concern shows off his rush for 3rd-place finish 119TH PREAKNESS

May 22, 1994|By Kent Baker | Kent Baker,Sun Staff Writer

All week leading to the Preakness, Dick Small expressed the hope that his late-running local entry of Concern and Looming would not be overmatched in the race.

Neither horse had the portfolio of the major contenders yesterday, although Concern had beaten Blumin Affair and Silver Goblin to win the Arkansas Derby.

Not to worry.

The entry was no match for Tabasco Cat and Go For Gin, but Concern unleashed a rush in the final eighth of a mile and finished third, 6 3/4 lengths behind the winner, earning $68,880 for owner Robert Meyerhoff.

Looming didn't fire as much, passing only the tired early pacesetters for seventh.

"The horses both ran well, but I wouldn't confuse either of them with Broad Brush," Small said of their sire, who was third in the 1986 Preakness. "He was third, but he had a big excuse [he stumbled after the start and had to make up ground].

"These two are one-dimensional. They have to come from behind."

But the pace up front was not favorable for such a climax.

Silver Goblin, who had a blazing workout at Pimlico Race Course a week ago, did not seize control early, and the fractions -- 23 vTC 3/5, 47 2/5 and 1:11 4/5 -- were sluggish.

"We made a good run," Meyerhoff said. "We just didn't get the speed out front. They close better if there is pace. If it had been quicker, Concern might have won. But then again, maybe not."

Concern raced seven wide into the stretch under jockey Garrett Gomez, who said: "We were a little farther back than I wanted. I wasn't happy with our position. It took him a quarter of a mile to pick up the bit."

As the field entered the final turn, Concern made up considerable ground. Then he took a brief breather before striding strongly to the wire.

"He ran good the last three-sixteenths, one-eighth," Gomez said. "I have nothing negative to say."

As for Looming, he was never a factor, although there were no problems on the trip.

"I just didn't run fast enough," jockey Andrea Seefeldt said.

"Garrett and I could have got in each other's way, but we didn't."

Small described both Concern and Looming as "kind of plodding," but said Broad Brush's offspring are "all real honest and try real hard. They're pretty consistent.

"It looked like we were going to get a freaky fast pace [from Silver Goblin], but we didn't."

Small said both horses came back from the race well. They are sons of the trainer's most successful project. Broad Brush is the all-time money-winner among Maryland-breds. He had 14 victories in 27 starts and earned $2,656,793 in a three-year racing career.

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