Unveiling the Trifecta: A Preview of the Renowned West Virginia Derby with Three Respected Contenders

Welcome to the West Virginia Derby

Get ready for an exhilarating race at Mountaineer Park as the Grade 3 West Virginia Derby takes center stage. This highly anticipated event features a star-studded field, including some familiar names from the Triple Crown races. Despite not being an official leg of the Triple Crown, the West Virginia Derby offers an impressive $500,000 purse and a chance for these horses to showcase their talent.

A Clash of Titans

The West Virginia Derby brings together three notable horses: Simplification, Skippylongstocking, and We the People. Each horse has their own story and aspirations for this race, making it a thrilling contest to watch.

Simplification’s Quest for Redemption

Simplification enters the West Virginia Derby after a disappointing sixth-place finish in the Preakness Stakes. This colt showed promise earlier in the season, with notable performances in the Florida Derby and the Fountain of Youth. However, a bleeding incident during the Preakness Stakes derailed his chances of success. Trainer Antonio Sano has given Simplification ample time to recover and prepare for this race. With a rigorous training schedule and a desire for redemption, Simplification is a horse to watch closely.

Skippylongstocking’s Consistent Performance

Skippylongstocking has been a model of consistency in recent races. After finishing fifth in the Preakness, this colt impressed with a strong third-place finish in the Belmont Stakes. Trainer Saffie Joseph Jr. has been diligently training Skippylongstocking, and this race marks the culmination of their efforts. With a proven ability to compete at the highest level, Skippylongstocking aims to make a mark in the West Virginia Derby.

We the People’s Long-Distance Challenge

We the People is no stranger to success, with a commanding victory in the Grade 3 Peter Pan Stakes. However, his attempt at the Belmont Stakes didn’t go as planned. While leading the pack for the majority of the race, We the People faltered in the final stretch, finishing fifth. Trainer Rodolphe Brisset recognized the colt’s limitations and redirected his focus to the West Virginia Derby. With a strong track record and an impressive training regimen, We the People is a formidable contender in this race.

An Escape from the Limelight

The West Virginia Derby offers a refreshing change of scenery for these horses, away from the bustling atmosphere of Saratoga’s Jim Dandy-Travers races. This race provides an opportunity for them to regroup and compete for a well-deserved graded stakes title. The $500,000 purse adds an extra incentive, making this race a thrilling and rewarding experience for all participants.

Meet the Challengers

While the Triple Crown ex-pats grab the headlines, they face tough competition from other talented contenders:

Home Brew – A Rising Star

Home Brew comes into the West Virginia Derby with an impressive record of 4 wins in 6 starts. This consistent performer has recently secured victories in the Oaklawn Stakes and the Pegasus Stakes at Monmouth Park, showcasing his immense talent. With back-to-back wins and excellent form, Home Brew poses a significant threat to the Triple Crown ex-pats.

King Ottoman – An Asmussen Protégé

Trained by the renowned Steve Asmussen, King Ottoman is seeking to establish himself as a force to be reckoned with. After a solid third-place finish in the Grade 3 Indiana Derby, King Ottoman clinched victory in the Texas Derby. This horse has quickly caught the attention of the racing world, and Asmussen’s expertise adds an extra layer of confidence. With aspirations of claiming a sixth West Virginia Derby win, King Ottoman is primed for success.

A Weekend of Racing Excitement

Aside from the West Virginia Derby, the Governor’s Stakes adds another thrilling chapter to the racing weekend. The 1 1/16-mile Grade 3 race brings together formidable competitors, including last year’s West Virginia Derby winner, Mr. Wireless. This standout horse faces fierce competition from multiple graded stakes winners Fulsome and Silver Prospector, promising an edge-of-your-seat battle to the finish line.


The West Virginia Derby promises to be a captivating race that showcases the talents and determination of these exceptional horses. From the Triple Crown ex-pats seeking redemption to the rising stars hungry for victory, the competition will be fierce. As the horses thunder down the track at Mountaineer Park, the excitement in the air will be palpable. Don’t miss this thrilling event that embodies the spirit of horse racing.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How much is the purse for the West Virginia Derby?

The West Virginia Derby offers an impressive purse of $500,000, making it a highly lucrative race for the participants.

2. Who is the trainer of Simplification?

Simplification is trained by Antonio Sano, who has meticulously prepared the colt for this race after a disappointing performance in the Preakness Stakes.

3. How did Skippylongstocking perform in the Belmont Stakes?

Skippylongstocking finished third in the Belmont Stakes, showcasing his consistency and ability to compete at the highest level.

4. What is the training regimen for We the People?

We the People has been training rigorously at the WinStar Training Center in Kentucky, under the guidance of trainer Rodolphe Brisset. The colt’s training regimen has prepared him for the challenges of the West Virginia Derby.

5. Who are the prominent challengers in the Governor’s Stakes?

In the Governor’s Stakes, last year’s West Virginia Derby winner, Mr. Wireless, faces stiff competition from Fulsome and Silver Prospector, both of whom have an impressive record of graded stakes victories.

Picture of Doug I. Jones

Doug I. Jones

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