On Andy’s Advice – 2014 Manitoba Derby Contenders

On Andy's Advice listening to trainer Wally Pugh.

On Andy's Advice listening to trainer Wally Pugh.

by George

On Andy's Advice is one of two horses in this year's Manitoba Derby conditioned by veteran horseman Wally T.M. Pugh.

Like his stablemate Wilko Rum, On Andy's Advice is by 2004 Breeders' Cup Juvenile-G1 winner Wilko, and if you want a good example of pure guts in a stretch drive you'll want to watch that race on YouTube.

Pugh will no doubt be hoping some of Wilko's courage carries through to On Andy's Advice for more than one reason. His Wood River Ranches Ltd. has numerous mares in foal to Wilko, currently one of Canada's leading sires.

Wood River Ranches Ltd. is a family run operation and the Pugh's raise not only top performance horses but also Black Angus cattle. They have recently ventured into the thoroughbred racing game and are hoping they can replicate their previous successes on the rodeo circuit with race horses.

On Andy's Advice comes into the Manitoba Derby off an allowance win at Northlands Park going a mile, and he brings a good deal of seasoning with him, having made five starts at Charles Town and Laurel in February and March.

One of his best performances prior to returning to Canada was a third-place finish in an allowance race over a sloppy track going 1 1/16-miles at Charles Town. He returned after a 7-week layoff to finish unplaced in the one-mile Ky Alta Stakes at Northlands Park on June 21, but rebounded with the aforementioned allowance win in his most recent start at Northlands Park on July 16.

On Andy's Advice is an improving 3-year-old stepping up in class for the Manitoba Derby, but his trainer's record with performance horses over four decades might just give him the edge he needs to break through to the next level.

Wild card.

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