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Apr 13, 2007

Cowtown Cat captures Illinois Derby


Cicero, IL (Sports Network) - Trainer Todd Pletcher's decision to run Cowtown Cat in Saturday's $500,000 Illinois Derby at Hawthorne proved to be a wise one, as the three-year-old colt went wire-to-wire in winning the 1 1/8-mile race over eight rivals.

Right from the start Cowtown Cat proved to be the horse to beat, as he broke from the gate first under jockey Fernando Jara. Pressing the pace from the outside was Catman Running with Bold Start third.

On the turn for home the favorite, Cobalt Blue, drew even with the leader. Cowtown Cat repelled the challenge down the stretch and went on to win by 2 1/4 lengths.

Rallying for second place was Reporting for Duty followed by Bold Start, Sacrifice Bunt, Catman Running, Quite Acceptable, Cobalt Blue, Family Talk and Love Dubai.

The time for the Illinois Derby was 1:51.21.

Owned by WinStar Farm and Gulf Coast Farms, Cowtown Cat added $300,000 to his bankroll, which now stands at $488,463. He has four career wins in seven starts, including the Gotham Stakes last month.

Cowtown Cat was cross-entered in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct. Pletcher ran Any Given Saturday in New York and shipped Cowtown Cat to suburban Chicago.

Cowtown Cat returned $9.00, $5.20 and $4.60. Reporting for Duty paid $16.20 and $7.40, and Bold Start paid $4.60.

In 2002 War Emblem followed his win in this race with victories in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes.

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