Hansen Dominates the Iowa Derby
When Hansen broke on top and was allowed to set an uncontested opening ¼ mile of 24 seconds under jockey Ramon Dominguez, it was a race for second as Hansen went wire to wire in the Iowa Derby winning by 10 lengths. Heavily backed from the onset, Hansen was 1/9 throughout the wagering and returned $2.20 to his supporters. The $150,000 winner’s share moved Hansen’s career earnings past $1.7 million. Louisiana Derby winner, Hero Of Order and Macho Bull completed the trifecta. In a post-race interview, co-owner Dr. Kendall Hansen hinted that Hansen may return to Prairie Meadows next summer for the Cornhusker Handicap.
Fort Larned Captures Cornhusker Handicap
30 minutes earlier jockey Brian Hernandez Jr. witnessed Hansen’s front-running score in the Iowa Derby, so he decided to employ those tactics and was rewarded with a 3-length victory in the Grade 3 $300,000 Cornhusker Handicap aboard Fort Larned. At the break, expected front runner, Shadowbdancing, broke outward and bumped heavily favored Successful Dan. This allowed Fort Larned to grab the early lead, and he never relinquished it while setting moderate early fractions of 24.57, 48.43 and 1:12.22.
“He left there pretty good. The horses that looked like they were going to have speed kind of took back, so we took it to them. We had a lot of horse. (Trainer Ian Wilkes) did a great job. When we got to the 3 ½ (furlong pole), he was looking for more room,” Hernandez Jr. said.
Fort Larned completed the 1 1/8 miles in 147.42 and returned $9.40 for the win. Successful Dan rallied for second and fan favorite Awesome Gem ran on late for third.
Uptown Bertie Rolls in the Iowa Oaks
With a perfect trip behind a quick early pace, Uptown Bertie swallowed up her competition moving into the final turn of the Grade 3, 1 1/16 miles Iowa Oaks and strolled to victory by 2 ¼ lengths. With jockey Julien Leparoux aboard Uptown Bertie for the first time, she sat 2-3 lengths off the early pace set by Livi Makenzie and Tapajo before making her move to winner’s circle.
“She broke good and there was a lot of pace for us. She settled nice for me and I decided to make a move on the backside. She won very easy,” Leparoux said.
7/5 favorite Ice Cream Silence rallied for second, while 49-1 outsider, Emona, got up for third. Uptown Bertie moved her lifetime record to 10-3-3-2 and career earnings in excess of $215,000 after tonight’s $120,000 first place purse for owner/breeders Bert & Elaine Klein. She returned $5.20 as the second favorite.
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