Combatant was the first horse off the also eligible list to receive a gate stall for the Derby. Combatant has 32 Derby Points. Combatant will replace Quip. Steve Asmussen, trainer of Quip, wants to freshen up Quip for the Preakness, second leg of the Triple Crown races. Steve Asmussen trains both Quip and Combatant.
Combatant broke his maiden in his second start at Churchill Downs in 2017, then proceeded to record three straight runner-up finishes, including the Smarty Jones Stakes on January 15 at a distance of 1 mile in his 2018 debut followed by the February 19 Southwest Stakes, Grade 3, at 1 1/16 miles, both races were at Oaklawn Park. In that next two Oaklawn Park contests, he finished third in the Rebel Stakes, Grade 2, at a distance of 1 1/16. In the Arkansas Derby, at 11/8 miles, on April 4 he was able to capture fourth place. His career earnings are $388,550.
Instilled Regard will replace Gronkowski in the 144 Kentucky Derby. Gronkowski was redrawn from the Derby on Monday, April 23. Gronkowski spiked a fever over the weekend and has been treated with antibiotics. The trainer and owners thought it would best to redraw from the Derby and avoid the extra stress of flying on their horse from England to Kentucky and most likely back to England.
Instilled Regard was the next also eligible on the earned Derby Leader Points Board with 29 points. Instilled Regard won the Lecomte Stake, Grade 3, at a distance of 1 1/8 miles at the Fair Grounds on January 13. He placed in the Los Alamitos Futurity, Grade 1, at a distance of 1 1/16 miles at Los Alamitos on December 9,2017. Recently. Instilled Regard finished fourth in his last two outings; Risen Star, Grade 2, at a distance of 1 1/16 miles at Fair Ground on February 17 and Santa Anita Derby, Grade 1, at a distance of 1 1/8 miles at Santa Anita Park on April 7. His career earnings are $294,000.