BALTIMORE (AP) - Orb came up short in the Preakness, frustrating everyone who made the Kentucky Derby winner a 3-5 favorite - no one more than trainer Shug McGaughey.
``I'm disappointed,'' McGaughey said after Orb finished fourth and Oxbow pulled off the upset Saturday.
``I'll be more disappointed tomorrow than I am right now. I know the game. It is highs and lows. Probably more lows than highs.''
McGaughey and Orb were certainly on a high in the two weeks since the Derby. The colt had trained sensationally ahead of the Preakness, fanning hopes that a horse was finally going to end the Triple Crown drought that dates back to Affirmed in 1978.
Orb needed a Preakness win to set the stage for a Triple try three weeks later in the Belmont Stakes. He couldn't deliver, despite the outpouring of support at Pimlico as fans cheered loudly when he led the post parade.
He never settled into a groove. Orb broke from the rail and didn't seem comfortable being surrounded by horses.
In the Derby, Orb unleashed a breathtaking rally around the final turn, circling the field on a sloppy track to win by 2 1/2 lengths.
But there was no explosive move in the Preakness, only a mild kick in the late stages to make a dull effort appear a little better than it was.
McGaughey, as gracious as he's been throughout the Orb run, saluted fellow Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas on the victory.
``We had a great run two weeks ago,'' McGaughey said. ``My hats off to Wayne, winning his sixth Preakness. That's a pretty remarkable record.''