Barn Notes

Purple Egg Moving Up Into Graded Stakes Ranks

Posted Saturday, Oct 6, 2012

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Purple Egg made quite a name for himself at Monmouth Park during the 2012 meet and now the undefeated 2-year-old is going to be tested in the graded stakes ranks.

            “He’s going to run in the Nashua next,” said leading trainer Jane Cibelli, while looking at him tucked safely in his stall after he had breezed four furlongs in a fleet :48.20 on a muddy Monmouth track. “He worked really well and he continues to be doing very well. Everything is right on schedule with him.”

            Cibelli, who became the first woman to win leading trainer honors at Monmouth in 2011 and had the title virtually wrapped up again with two days of racing remaining in the 2012 meet, had considered two graded stakes for Purple Egg’s next start. She and the ownership group of Goodwood Racing LLC had in mind the Grade 3 Iroquois, to be run at one mile at Churchill Downs on October 28, or the Grade 2 Nashua, also to be run at a flat mile, at Belmont Park on November 4.

            “All of the big boys will have run the day before (in the Grade 1, $2 million Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita),” said Cibelli. “This is the right spot for him.”

            Purple Egg’s tale is well documented, as he became an internet and social media sensation after two failed first starts at Monmouth. Twice he was led to the gate, and twice he behaved so terribly that he had to scratched, and ultimately, gelded. Once Cibelli got him to the races, he has lived up to lofty expectations. He won by 4 ¾ lengths at first asking at Monmouth in August and then last month aced his second test by 6 ¾ lengths at Parx Racing without even being asked.

            Meanwhile, as Cibelli continues to prepare Purple Egg for his next start, her phone keeps ringing with offers from far and wide to buy the dark bay son of Lion Heart out of the Prized mare Luminous Prize

            “He’s still here,” she said with a coy smile as she gave Purple Egg an affectionate rub on his neck. “He’s the big man.”


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