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Godolphin Mile: I Want Revenge in focus
by Geir Stabell / Globeform
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Favourite leading up to the 2009 Kentucky Derby (G1), a race he missed due to injury, I Want Revenge has raced just three times since without winning, he has changed trainer, and he is very much seeking to live up to his name. He is also a very interesting contender for the Godolphin Mile (G2) on World Cup night at Meydan, a race his trainer won three years ago.

Two impressive wins in New York in the spring of his three-year-old career made I Want Revenge a hot name for the Kentucky Derby two years ago; a runaway success in the Gotham Stakes (G3) and an equally smooth win in the Wood Memorial (G1), but an ankle injury forced his trainer, Jeff Mullins, to scratch the colt on the morning of the 'Run for The Roses'. It was a massive blow to his connections and supporters, and I Want Revenge was to be sidelined for well over a year. Also, he was moved from Mullins to Richard Dutrow Jr., best known for training Kentucky Derby winner Big Brown in 2008. Racing fans in Dubai will remember Dutrow for his valuable double at Nad Al Sheba the same year, when he won the Golden Shaheen (G1) with Benny the Bull and the Godolphin Mile (G2) with Diamond Stripes.

Dutrow got I Want Revenge back to racing shape last summer, and he picked a tough race for his comeback run; against high-class rivals in the Suburban Handicap (G2) at Belmont Park in July. Still, the betting public had faith in Dutrow. Seven runners went to post, and I Want Revenge was the short-priced favourite. He ran well but two horses beat him. He passed the post in third behind Haynesfield and Convocation. The winner took the Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1) in great style later in the season and, despite being a losing favourite, I Want Revenge's return could be called promising. The verdict was not so good after his next start, however. He was dropped in class and contested the Philip Iselin Handicap (G2) at Monmouth Park in August. He finished third again, this time beaten 6 lengths by the winner, Duke of Mischief, while Redding Colliery took second. I Want Revenge ran a dull race, no doubt about that, and he was wrapped up for another lengthy break. Two racecourse appearances was all he made in 2010.

He reappeared in the Donn Handicap (G1) at Gulfstream Park in Florida on February 5, once more being asked to jump straight in at the top level without a prep run. Racing up with the leaders, he was beaten 2 lengths into fourth behind Giant Oak. The level of his performance was quite similar to his third in last year's Suburban, indicating that I Want Revenge is still a force to be reckoned with. To see him improve this year would not be the biggest of surprises. He has been campaigned almost exclusively over 9 furlongs (1800 metres) but the Godolphin Mile is normally run at a strong pace and should suit him well. This five-year-old probably is a runner whose record would have been so much better had he enjoyed an injury free career. He certainly deserves another big win one day.

Stephen Got Even, the sire of I Want Revenge, is a son of the famous A.P. Indy. Stephen Got Even won the Donn Handicap (G1) in a career producing 5 wins from 11 runs. He has also sired Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) winner Stevie Wonderboy, and last year Stephen Got Even's son First Dude finished second in the Preakness Stakes (G1) and third in both the Belmont Stakes (G1) and the Haskell Invitational (G1). I Want Revenge's dam Meguial was a smart performer in her homeland, winning twice and running second in the Argentine Oaks (G1) and Argentine 1,000 Guineas (G1).

Last update: 2011-03-11 06:21:48 (First published: 2011-03-02 13:01:34 )

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