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Trot N.A. Cup Spring Book: #5

Published: April 12, 2017 2:39 pm ET

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"He's only really given us one average race. And that was in the mud, ducked him to last, eye infection...he just wasn't himself."

At 14-1, Fear The Dragon comes in at #5 in Trot Magazine's 2017 Pepsi North America Cup Spring Book.

One of two colts sired by Dragon Again in the top 10, Fear The Dragon (Dragon Again - Armbro Cinnamon) was ultra-consistent as a freshman with a 5-3-2 summary from 11 starts and more than $228,000 in purse earnings. He boasts a mark of 1:50.3 taken at The Meadows with impressive mile times over all track sizes -- timed in 1:49.3 at The Red Mile and 1:51h at Delaware, finishing second in two world record performances.

Owned by Emerald Highlands Farm of Mount Vernon, Ohio, Fear The Dragon is one of two pacing colts trained by Brian Brown to crack Trot's Top 10. Brown provided Trot Insider with an update.

Where did he winter?

"At Spring Garden Ranch in Deleon Springs, Florida. "He was turned out at Emerald Highlands Farm after his season, then we picked him up late November."

When did you start back with him?

"The start of December."

Have you noticed any changes from last year to this year?

"To tell you the truth, he didn't change a lot, he didn't grow a lot. He was always a nice round horse last year, maybe he's lost some of that baby fat and he's more solid. He was a nice-looking horse last year...I would have liked for him to be a little taller."

He's qualified for you twice at Spring Garden. Assess his performance thus far.

"He was very good, but not perfect so we've been working and changing some things. I've let his hopples out."

What will his early schedule look like leading up to the Pepsi NA Cup?

"We will probably hit the first two legs of the Pennsylvania Sire Stakes, he will probably have a start before those first two legs. Then if everything's in order, he will go to the North America Cup eliminations."

What does his tentative schedule look like after the North America Cup?

"We're going to pick our spots with him. He's in most everything, he's not in the Meadowlands Pace simply because we didn't want to have to race him eight straight weeks from the NA Cup to the Adios. So we picked the most expensive payment and skipped the Meadowlands Pace with him."

What's his biggest asset/strength?

"His main thing is guts. He's a tough little gutsy horse."

At what point last year did you think this horse was North America Cup material?

"Probably after he started racing. I didn't even think about those three-year-old payments at the down he was a good little horse. We always trained him from behind, just because he's a Dragon Again and I didn't want him getting a bad attitude. So we trained him from behind, always trained good. Right off the bat, he raced good in first start.

"All summer, David Miller liked him better than [stablemate] Downbytheseaside because he was so much more manageable, handier...just a nice horse, and he could go. All summer, he was just as fast as Huntsville and Downbytheseaside."

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