Shirl's Speight won't be heading to Churchill Downs.
Canadian owner Charles Fipke said in a statement Saturday night his horse developed "a minor cough" earlier in the day that will keep him from running in next month's Kentucky Derby. Fipke, of Edmonton, added Shirl's Speight is expected to make a full recovery and will be pointed towards the Preakness, the final leg of the American Triple Crown, on Oct. 3.
Shirl's Speight is trained by Woodbine regular Roger Attfield. The 80-year-old native of Newbury, Berkshire, England, has enjoyed success on both sides of the border, having been inducted in both the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame and the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame in the United States.
He's won the Queen's Plate — the first leg of Canada's Triple Crown — eight times, the Prince of Wales Stakes five times and Breeders' Stakes on nine occasions. Attfield has also captured the Canadian Triple Crown three times (1989, With Approval; 1990, Izvestia and 1993, Peteski).
But he's never won the Kentukcy Derby.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 26, 2020.