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Sep 19, 2014

California Chrome gallops over track for PA Derby


Bensalem, PA ( - Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner California Chrome galloped over the Parx Racing track Thursday morning as he prepares to face seven other 3-year-olds in the $1 million, 1 1/8-mile Pennsylvania Derby on Saturday

Trained by Art Sherman with son Alan, California Chrome galloped about 1 1/2 miles with exercise rider Willie Delgado. The colt schooled in the paddock and will be brought to the starting gate Friday morning.

"He was striding out nicely today. I thought he handled the track real well," Alan Sherman said. "He schooled great, looked around taking everything in. I thought yesterday when he jogged, he looked around a bit, but today I thought he was more focused. He'll gallop again tomorrow and I think he'll be even more focused tomorrow."

California Chrome will be ridden again by Victor Espinoza from the rail post, a position that is not favored by his connections. Alan Sherman looks to have his 3-year-old race away from the inside, allowing other horses to set the pace.

"It looks like there will be a couple of speed horses. If he can be third, somehow get off the rail and not get trapped on the rail," Sherman noted about race strategy.

Haskell winner Bayern, the 7-2 second pick, is the definite speed in the race. The other likely speed horse is C J's Awesome who is 12-1 in the program and will break from the outside post in the eight-horse field with Hall of Fame jockey Edgar Prado on the colt for the second straight start.

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