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Jan 04, 2008

Cowboy Cal cruises in Tropical Park Derby


Miami, FL (Sports Network) - Odds-on favorite Cowboy Cal took control on the far turn to win Tuesday's running of the $100,000 Tropical Park Derby at Calder Race Course.

The event was the first graded stakes of the new year for three-year-olds.

Ridden by John Velazquez, Cowboy Cal made it two stakes wins in a row with the New Year's Day victory. With this win and an earlier victory in the Laurel Futurity, Cowboy Cal has won two stakes that were also taken by 2006 Kentucky Derby champ Barbaro.

Cowboy Cal, trained by Todd Pletcher, pressed the pace set Tuesday by Joey the Scholar. Cowboy Cal took the lead entering the far turn and drove away from his 11 rivals.

At the finish Cowboy Cal was two lengths in front of runner-up Why Tonto, with 9-2 second choice Cannonball edging Dynhocracy for third.

Completing the order of finish was Titan of Industry, Moral Compass, Wise Answer, Celestial Comet, Joey the Scholar, Pir At the Moon, Heaven's Awesome and Kim's Dixie Tune.

The time for the 1 1/8 mile turf race was 1:46.95 on a firm course.

Cowboy Cal, owned by Stonerside Stable, has won three of four starts for $152,048, including $60,000 for Tuesday's triumph. The three-year-old has been ridden in three of the four starts by two-time champion jockey Velazquez.

The 2004 edition was won by Kitten's Joy, who would win the Eclipse Award that year as top male turf thoroughbred.

Cowboy Cal returned $3.40, $2.80 and $2.40. Why Tonto paid $10.80 and $6.40, and Cannonball paid $4.60 to show.

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