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Blessing or burden? Trainers face Preakness pressure after first Derby win
“I was quite shocked to see Shackleford’s picture on the grandstand when I drove in this morning,” he said. “That was kind of a pit in my stomach.”
It’s hard to shake that losing feeling, but the challenge would get even tougher for O’Neill if I’ll Have Another wins Saturday, as Baffert recalled with Silver charm.
“When he won in the Preakness, I said, ‘Uh oh.’ Now it’s Triple Crown,” he said. “I wasn’t really prepared for that.”
Preparation is half the battle. Lukas knows that after being around the business and winning for 30 years.
“That experience factor, there is no how-to book,” he said. “You can’t pull it up in the library or on a chip in a computer that says this is how you do it. So when you get me or Baffert or some of these guys that have been here a little bit, that’s a tremendous edge.”
O’Neill has the growing pains to go through the past couple of weeks in Baltimore, but Motion is a prime example of gaining from even the first little bit of familiarity.
“They’ll get it down, if they’re around,” Lukas said. “They will probably be the first to tell you that it’ll be a lot easier the next time they go around. When they try it next year, he’ll have a better feel for it.”
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