San Vicente entries drawn, Baffert's tough choices, Uncle Mo makes new race nonexistent?

As unpredictable as the road to the Derby can be, one thing is for certain- there will be drama.  The horseracing blogs and forums seemed to boil over today with several news items from earlier in the week or month: Baffert kicked Bejarano off The Factor, J P’s Gusto and Jaycito had trainer switches, and Uncle Mo may be entered in a race no one has heard of.  My take on some of this in the “thoughts” section below// The San Vicente drew 9 entries, Jaycito absent- another Baffert choice// Risen Star runners ready to roll// Nice background articles on major sites of ESPN (re; pedigree) and NY Times (re; Uncle Mo)

San Vicente entries and a link to PPs can be found on the upcoming page here

·       The Factor will face 8 others in San Vicente (Brisnet) (Bloodhorse)
·       Garcia replaces Bejarano on The Factor (Thoroughbred Times)

·       Pants On Fire back for round 2 in Risen Star (Fair Grounds News)
·       Machen may be the rising star (DRF)
·       Brethren has big shoes to fill (Saratogian)
·       Distance is in the blood (ESPN)
·       Most likely no fillies in the Triple Crown this year (Horse Racing Nation)
·       A big year for Indian Charlie? (Paulick Report)

·       Dick’s Picks for The Risen Star (Downey Profile)

·       Bloodhorse handicaps The Risen Star (Bloodhorse)

·       Tiz Blessed: PMM- 4F- 49:00- B- 12/34
·       Astrology: SA- 5F- 1.03:20- H- 6/9

Dialed In won’t race in new stakes if Uncle Mo draws in (DRF)

Hutcheson Stakes likely next for Violette trainee Sovereign Default (DerbyContenders Twitter)

Gotham Stakes possible for Rescind The Trade or The Fed Eased (DerbyContenders Twitter)

Rick Violette's promising 3yo Read The Contract missed work time due to illness & will bypass the Hutcheson Stakes as originally planned (DerbyContenders Twitter)

Uncle Mo: Although this new Timely Writer stakes is bogus and undoubtedly an easy spot, what do they have to prove in March?  He’ll show up to the big dance if all goes well and all questions will be answered.   Either way, I can’t imagine many trainers wanting to enter their promising 3YO in an open ungraded stakes against him.  Possibly an allowance also-ran or even claimer could enter just for the dough, but I have a feeling this race won’t see the light of day.

Baffert: While this received little attention Monday, it seemed to gain steam today.  His past decisions have shown there’s no room for jockey loyalty when it comes to his horses.  However, in this case I do believe he was actually honoring his agreement with first-call jock Garcia who was plagued with visa issues in December.  Plus, wherever you stand you have to admit his decisions rarely come back to bite him.