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Sep 11, 2009

Gone Astray powers to victory in Pennsylvania Derby


Bensalem, PA (Sports Network) - Gone Astray, ridden by Eddie Castro, thundered down the stretch to win Monday's 30th running of the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby at Philadelphia Park. The three-year-old colt covered the 1 1/8 miles in 1:48.27 on a fast track.

The nine horse field was reduced by one when West Virginia Derby winner Soul Warrior, the 3-1 program favorite, was scratched after coming down with a temperature on Sunday.

Setting the pace in the Labor Day feature was Our Edge with Chuckie Lopez aboard. Running in second was Join in the Dance with Bunker Hill in third and Endymion racing in fourth.

Entering the far turn Our Edge had a slight lead as 2-1 favorite Duke of Mischief began his move on the outside and Sunland Derby champ Kelly Leak was running on the inside.

Coming off the final turn Gone Astray circled the field to assume the lead at the top of the stretch. The colt ran away from his challengers and hit the wire 9 1/4-lengths ahead of second-place finisher Join in the Dance.

Kelly Leak, ridden by Mike Smith, finished third followed by Duke of Mischief, Bunker Hill, Our Edge, Denver and Endymion.

Gone Astray is owned by the Phipps Stable and trained by Hall of Fame member Shug McGaughey. The $600,000 winner's check is the largest won by the colt and puts his career earnings at $764,657. Gone Astray has won three of 11 lifetime starts and his first stakes victory.

Earlier in 2009 Gone Astray was third in the Withers Stakes and most recently second in both the Coronado's Quest at Monmouth Park and Curlin Stakes at Saratoga.

Gone Astray returned $11.40, $6.40 and $4.40. Join in the Dance paid $6.00 and $3.40, and Kelly Leak paid $3.40 to show.

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