Derby favorite Omaha Beach scratched from race

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"We found an entrapped epiglottis".

In a stunning Kentucky Derby development, favorite Omaha Beach has been scratched from the race just three days before post time. A win by any of the three would give Baffert his sixth Kentucky Derby win, which would tie the record by a trainer that's now held by Ben Jones.

Like Roadster, Game Winner and Improbable are trained by Baffert, who's seeking his record-tying sixth Kentucky Derby victory after winning with Justify a year ago. All three are entered by Bob Baffert, who past year became only the second trainer in history to saddle more than one Triple Crown victor when Justify completed the rare sweep of the Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes.

Improbable and Roadster were installed as the co-second choices at 5-1, giving five-time Derby-winning trainer Baffert the top three choices in the 20-horse field.

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Omaha Beach impressed many with his winning performance in the Arkansas Derby.

Kentucky Derby entrant Game Winner runs during a workout at Churchill Downs Wednesday. So Mel Stute said it best once when he was interviewed about the Derby or whatever it was, and he said, 'I have got a lot of experience with disappointment.

"It's been a devastating thing, but we have to do what's right for the horse", said Mandella, who has never won the Derby. "I'll be a glorified cheerleader".

A field of 21 horses hoped to not only win Saturday's race, but become the third Triple Crown victor in five years. The race could set up nicely for longshot horses to crash the board, particularly with a balanced blend of frontrunners, closers and stalkers that could push the Kentucky Derby pace in any direction.

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In 2009, I Want Revenge became the first morning-line favorite to scratch the day of the race because of a hot spot on his ankle. All horses from post positions 13-20 will move over one spot toward the rail.

The colt galloped Wednesday morning without any problem and Mandella said everything was fine.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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