In the days leading up to the 147th running of the $3 million Kentucky Derby (G1), usracing.com is profiling all the contenders. The 1 ¼-mile Run for the Roses at Churchill Downs is May 1 and is the first leg of the Triple Crown. All profiles will be updated with post positions, odds, and jockeys following the draw on Tuesday, April 27.
Kentucky Derby Profile: Keepmeinmind
By Ed McNamara
This colt hasn’t approached his strong form as a 2-year-old, when he won the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes at Churchill Downs in his season finale. Keepmeinmind also was competitive with division champion Essential Quality in the Breeders’ Futurity (second) and Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (third), losing by a combined 5 1/4 lengths.
He’s been nowhere in his two starts this year, finishing sixth in the Rebel and fifth in the Blue Grass, beaten a total of 24 lengths. He made it into the Derby thanks to a slew of recent defections (Caddo River, Dream Shake, Get Her Number, Hozier, Rombauer, Concert Tour). In the long run, Keepmeinmind probably would have been better off not qualifying, because his recent performances indicate he has no chance.
Kentucky Derby 2021 Entries: Keepmeinmind
Post position: TBD
Trainer: Robertino Diodoro
Jockey: David Cohen
Owners: Cyprus Creek Equine, Arnold Bennewith, Spendthrift Farm
Career record: 6-1-2-1
Career earnings: $424,987
Derby qualifying points: 18 (19th)
Best Equibase speed figure: 98
Pedigree: Laoban-Inclination, by Victory Gallop
Running style: Closer
Notes: Diodoro, a 46-year-old native of Canada, has 2,660 victories, including nine in graded stakes, since taking out his trainer’s license in 1995. He excels at claiming horses and races mainly in the Midwest, with strings at Oaklawn Park and Churchill. He saddled 258 winners in 2019 and 243 last year … He’s come a long way from where he started, at a tiny track in Alberta, Canada, called Trout Springs.
He was 19, and at the end of the summer he had to borrow money from his mother to pay the blacksmith … David Cohen, 36, was introduced to racing by his father, Morry Cohen, a California-based owner, trainer and breeder. David has more than 1,550 wins, including a dead heat in the Grade 1 Travers (2012), since beginning his career in 2004. He’s ridden Keepmeinmind in five of his six starts. After being sidelined for three years because of a serious leg injury in 2014 and the deaths of his father and sister, Cohen revived his career. He finished third in the 2018 Oaklawn standings and won its 2019 meet with 75 winners … This will be the first Derby for him and for Diodoro.