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Jun 26, 2015

Frac Daddy draws rail for Firecracker Handicap


Louisville, KY ( - Frac Daddy, second in last month's Opening Verse Stakes, will start from the inside post in Saturday's $200,000 Firecracker Handicap at Churchill Downs.

The one-mile turf stakes has drawn a field of nine. Two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan won the race in 2011 and 2013.

Trained by Ken McPeek, Frac Daddy will be ridden by Corey Lanerie as the 5- year-old makes his second start of the season. The gray horse set most of the pace in the Opening Verse on May 30 but finished 2 1/2 lengths behind The Pizza Man in the 1 1/16-mile grass stakes.

Frac Daddy, owned by Magic City Thoroughbreds, has earned $699,236 with five wins and seven seconds in 19 career starts.

Also making a second 2015 start will be Departing from the barn of trainer Al Stall Jr. The 5-year-old gelding, owned by Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider, will be ridden by Miguel Mena from post 7.

Departing was third in the Opening Verse in his first start since finishing seventh in the Clark Handicap on Nov. 28. His best stakes results in 2014 came with consecutive seconds in the Homecoming Stakes at Churchill and Keeneland's Fayette. The gelding has won seven of 16 lifetime starts and $1,600,279.

Medal Count, third in last year's Belmont Stakes, will break from post 8 with James Graham in the saddle. The 4-year-old colt opened his 2015 campaign with a fifth on June 20 in an optional claiming race at Churchill.

Medal Count was on last year's Kentucky Derby trail with a fifth in the Fountain of Youth, a win in the Transylvania and was runner-up in the Blue Grass Stakes before finishing eighth in the Derby and third in the Belmont. He has won three of 13 career starts for $478,671.

Here is the field for the Firecracker in post position order: Frac Daddy, Corey Lanerie; Sky Flight, Julien Leparoux; Slip By, Rafael Hernandez; R. Great Adventure, Jamie Theriot; Hammers Terror, Robby Albarado; Knights Nation, Brian Hernandez Jr.; Departing, Miguel Mena; Medal Count, James Graham and Skyring, Joe Rocco Jr.

The Firecracker has an approximate post time of 9:39 p.m. ET.

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