He did that for another 40 minutes -- as per a routine trainer Shug McGaughey keeps with almost all of his horses -- after walking the shed row Tuesday morning. The Malibu Moon colt was due a break after a fast breeze Monday morning at Belmont Park before shipping down I-95 into the home state of his co-owner, Butler resident Stuart Janney III.
Orb does not appear bothered by anything at this point. Exercise rider Jenn Patterson -- whose older sister had earmarked a pony for her while Jenn was in the womb -- led him through the grass and marveled at his composure, calling him the calmest and most professional horse she's worked with.
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That wasn't always the case.
I've been talking to people who knew Orb when he was younger. Like many Malibu Moon colts, he was not a very serious horse as a yearling or 2-year-old.
"He was like a lot of his half-brothers, goofing off instead of paying any attention," said Niall Brennan, who broke Orb at his Florida farm. "That had been the one worry with Malibu Moon. His fillies were professional, his colts not so much. This one bucked the trend."
I'll have more on Orb's youth -- he spent many a night roaming a pasture in Kentucky with Departing, who will be a main rival Saturday -- later today.
We're also expecting the arrival of a third of the field when D. Wayne Lukas' van from Louisville pulls in this afternoon.