Louisville, KY (Sports Network) - A full field of 20 three-year-olds has
been entered for Saturday's 130th running of the Kentucky Derby. The
1 1/4 mile race has a guaranteed purse of $1 million.
The morning line favorite at 4-1 is Blue Grass Stakes winner The Cliff's
Edge. Ridden by Shane Sellers, The Cliff's Edge will start from post 11
for owner Robert La Penta and trainer Nick Zito. The colt has won four of
eight starts for $835,258.
Zito also trains Birdstone for Marylou Whitney. Birdstone is 50-1 in the
program and will break from post 13. Edgar Prado has the riding assignment.
While Birdstone has won three of five career starts, his only win this year
was in an allowance race. He finished fifth last time out in the Lane's
End Stakes. Zito is looking for his third win in the Kentucky Derby after
winning in 1991 with Strike the Gold and again in 1994 with Go for Gin.
Arkansas Derby winner Smarty Jones is a perfect 6-for-6 coming into the
Run for the Roses. He has earned $878,355 and can grab a $5 million bonus
with a victory Saturday. Smarty Jones is owned by Someday Farm and trained
by John Servis. Bred in Pennsylvania, the colt can join Lil E.Tee, winner
of the 1992 Kentucky Derby, as the only Pennsylvania-breds to claim the
prize. Smarty Jones is the second choice in the program at 9-2. He will be
ridden by Philadelphia Park leading jockey Stewart Elliott and will break
from post 15.
Wood Memorial winner Tapit is 8-1 in the morning line and will break from
post 18. Tapit is owned by Winchell Thoroughbreds and trained by Michael
Dickinson. Leading Maryland jockey Ramon Dominguez has the mount on the
gray colt. Tapit has won three of four career starts for $549,800. His only
loss came in the Florida Derby where he was sixth.
Borrego, the runner-up in the Arkansas Derby, will start from post 12 with
Victor Espinoza in the saddle. Espinoza won on War Emblem two years ago. The
chestnut colt is trained by co-owner Beau Greely and is 20-1 in the morning
line. Borrego has finished second in his last three starts and is winless
in stakes races. In seven career starts he has won $399,580.
Santa Anita Derby winner Castledale is 15-1 in the program and will start
from post 16 with jockey Jose Valdivia. Castledale is owned by Frank Lyons
and Greg Knee, and trained by Jeff Mullins. The longshot winner of the Santa
Anita Derby has raced three times in the United States winning twice.
Overall Castledale has won three of ten career starts for $561,836.
Another three-year-old coming off an upset win is Friends Lake. The longshot
winner of the Florida Derby will start from post six with Richard Migliore
riding. Friends Lake is 15-1 in the morning line for owners Mary and Chester
Broman and trainer John Kimmel. The colt has won three of five starts for
Trainer Richard Mandella has two colts entered in Saturday's Run for the
Roses. Champion two-year-old Action This Day and Minister Eric represent
the hottest trainer since last year's Breeders' Cup.
Action This Day has not won since capturing last year's Breeders' Cup
Juvenile. In fact he has won only twice in six career starts. This year he
has finished 4th, 7th and 6th. Action This Day will be ridden by David
Flores and will start from post 4. Owned by Billy Hughes, the bay colt is
30-1 in the morning line.
Minister Eric is still looking for his first stakes victory. He is 30-1 in
the program and will break from post 7 with jockey Pat Day. Day's only win
in this race came aboard Lil E. Tee in 1992. Minister Eric is owned by
Diamond A Racing and has earned $437,971.
Another trainer with two horses in this year's Derby is Todd Pletcher.
Pletcher will saddle Illinois Derby winner Pollard's Vision and Tampa Bay
Derby winner Limehouse.
Pollard's Vision is 20-1 in the morning line and will start from post 17.
The colt will be ridden by John Velazquez for owner Edgewood Farm.
Pollard's Vision has won three of ten starts for $445,811.
Dogwood Stable's Limehouse is coming off a third place finish in the Blue
Grass Stakes. He is 30-1 in the program and will start from the inside
post with jockey Jose Santos. Santos was the winning rider in last year's
Kentucky Derby and Preakness on Funny Cide. Limehouse has won five of
nine starts for $575,435.
Two time Kentucky Derby winning jockey Kent Desormeaux has the ride on
Imperialism. The gay colt is 15-1 in the morning line and will start from
post ten. Imperialism is trained by Kristin Mulhall and owned by Steve Taub.
In his career, Imperialism has won five of 15 starts for $437,605. Last
time out the colt was third in the Santa Anita Derby after winning the San
Rafael and San Vicente Stakes.
Lion Heart with Mike Smith riding will break from post three and is 10-1
in the program. Trained by Patrick Biancone, the colt has finished second
his last two starts after beginning his career with three straight wins.
Lion Heart is owned by Derrick Smith and Michael Tabor for whom he has
Bob Baffert, who has trained three Kentucky Derby winners, has Louisiana
Derby winner Wimbledon this year. Wimbledon is 15-1 in the morning line
and will start from post five with jockey Jerry Bailey. The Hall-of-Fame
rider has two victories in the Run for the Roses. Wimbledon is coming off a
disappointing fifth place finish in the Santa Anita Derby. He has earned
$430,980 while winning twice in seven career starts. Wimbledon is owned by
Master David is trainer Bobby Frankel's last est hope for his first Kentucky
Derby win. The chestnut colt was second in the Wood Memorial after winning
the Sahm Stakes. Master David is 12-1 and will be ridden by Alex Solis
from post eight. The three-year-old is owned by Georgia Stable, Stephen Mack
and Andrew Rosen. Master David has won two of seven starts for $268,789.
Song of the Sword is 30-1 in the morning line and will start from post two.
Trained by Jennifer Perdersen, the bay colt will be ridden by Norberto
Arroyo and is owned by Paraneck Stable. This year Song of the Sword was
second in the Illinois Derby and third in the Lexington Stakes. He has earned
$211,100 in five career starts.
The winner of the Lexington, Quintons Gold Rush, is 20-1 in the program and
will break from the outside post. Quintons Gold Rush was fourth earlier
this year in both the San Rafael and Santa Anita Derby. Corey Nakatani has
the riding assignment for owners Padua Stable, Jay Manogian and Kimberly
Riches and trainer Steve Asmussen. The colt has won $295,500 with two wins
in five starts.
Read the Footnotes will start from post 14 with Robby Albarado in the
saddle. The winner of the Fountain of Youth stakes is 12-1 in the morning
line. He was fourth in the Florida Derby for owners Klaravich Stables and
trainer Richard Violette. Read the Footnotes has won five of seven career
starts for $450,660.
St Averil, the winner earlier this year of the Santa Catalina Stakes, will
break from post nine and is 30-1 in the morning line. He will be ridden
by Tyler Baze for owner Stan Fulton and trainer Rafael Becerra. After the
Santa Catalina win he was second in the San Felipe and sixth in the Santa
Anita Derby. St Averil has earned $238,000 in five starts with two wins.
Pro Prado, ridden by John McKee, will start from post 19 and is 30-1 in
the morning line. The gray colt has finished third in his last three starts,
including the Arkansas Derby. Trained by Robert Holthus, Pro Prado has
earned $213,784 for owner Mrs. James Winn.
1 Limehouse 30-1 Jose Santos Todd Pletcher 2 Song of the Sword 30-1 Norberto
Arroyo Jennifer Pedersen 3 Lion Heart 10-1 Mike Smith Patrick Biancone 4
Action This Day 30-1 David Flores Richard Mandella 5 Wimbledon 15-1 Jerry
Bailey Bob Baffert 6 Friends Lake 15-1 Richard Migliore John Kimmel 7
Minister Eric 30-1 Pat Day Richard Mandella 8 Master David 12-1 Alex Solis
Bobby Frankel 9 St Averil 30-1 Tyler Baze Rafael Becerra 10 Imperialism
15-1 Kent Desormeaux Kristin Mulhall 11 The Cliff's Edge 4-1 Shane Sellers
Nick Zito 12 Borrego 20-1 Victor Espinoza Beau Greeley 13 Birdstone 50-1
Edgar Prado Nick Zito 14 Read the Footnotes 12-1 Robby Albarado Richard
Violette 15 Smarty Jones 9-2 Stewart Elliott John Servis 16 Castledale 15-1
Jose Valdivia Jeff Mullins 17 Pollard's Vision 20-1 John Velazquez Todd
Pletcher 18 Tapit 8-1 Ramon Dominguez Michael Dickinson 19 Pro Prado 30-1
John McKee Robert Holthus 20 Quintons Gold Rush 20-1 Corey Nakatani Steve
The weather forecast for Saturday in Louisville calls for thunderstorms with
a post-time temperature around 75.