Concerto to try on two jewels Owners target Derby, Preakness after Tesio

April 10, 1997|By Tom Keyser | Tom Keyser,SUN STAFF

The owners of Concerto, a Triple Crown prospect stabled in Maryland, have decided to race their colt in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness -- after a final tuneup April 19 at Pimlico.

Hank Steinbrenner said yesterday that the horse deserved a chance in the spring classics after winning four consecutive stakes, including the Grade II Jim Beam Stakes at Turfway Park. Steinbrenner manages the horse business for his father, George, the owner of Concerto.

John Tammaro III trains the horse. He is stabled at Laurel Park.

"I kind of thought we'd do this all along," said Tammaro, who lives in Howard County. "The horse has earned a shot, obviously."

Hank Steinbrenner gave the OK for the Derby after overcoming doubts about Concerto's ability to handle the Derby distance of 1 1/4 miles so early in the year, he said.

"But the way he ran in the Beam, and the way he's run his other races, you have to think it won't be a problem," Steinbrenner said. "I also think he can because of his courage and guts."

Concerto is to race once before the May 3 Derby, and that's Saturday, April 19, in the $200,000 Federico Tesio Stakes at Pimlico. He would then step onto a van the next Monday, Tammaro said, and ride to Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky.

Concerto joins another Maryland-trained horse on the Triple Crown trail: Captain Bodgit, who is trained by Gary Capuano. Captain Bodgit's final Derby prep is Saturday in the Wood Memorial Stakes at Aqueduct.

Pub Date: 4/10/97

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