Zayat Stables LLC and Southern
Equine Stables’ Bodemeister, the smashing 9 ½-length winner of the Arkansas
Derby (Grade I) in his most recent start, and Chadds Ford Stable’s Union Rags,
winner of the Champagne (GI) and two other graded stakes, head an overflow
field of 21 entered Wednesday for Saturday’s 138th running of the Kentucky
Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI).
With 20 starters, the purse for the Kentucky
Derby will be $2,219,600 with $1,459,600 going to the winner. The Kentucky
Derby will be carried by NBC Sports with a three-hour telecast from 4-7 p.m.
(all times Eastern).
Post time for the Run for the Roses
is 6:24 p.m. and the race will go as the 11th contest on the 13-race program
that begins at 10:30 a.m. In addition to the Kentucky Derby, five otheikr
graded stakes will highlight the undercard.
Early forecasts call for
temperatures in the mid 80s with a chance of isolated thunderstorms.
Bodemeister, the morning-line favorite at 4-1, and Union Rags, the second
choice at 9-2, are two of nine Grade I winners in the field that also features
three Grade II winners and six Grade III winners that will break from the gate
Trained by three-time Kentucky
Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert, Bodemeister did not make his racing debut
until this January when he finished second in his initial try. Following a
maiden win, Bodemeister ran second in the San Felipe to Derby rival Creative
Cause and then crushed his Arkansas Derby rivals.
Mike Smith, who won the 2005
Kentucky Derby on Giacomo, has the mount on Bodemeister, who will break from
post position six.
Michael Matz, who saddled Barbaro to
his Kentucky Derby victory in 2006, trains Union Rags, who comes into the Run
for the Roses off a troubled third-place finish in the Florida Derby (GI).
Runner-up to Derby rival Hansen in the Grey Goose Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI)
here last fall, Union Rags will be ridden by Julien Leparoux and break from
post position four.
Hansen will attempt to become the
first 2-year-old champion to come back the following spring and win the
Kentucky Derby since Street Sense in 2007. Owned by Kendall Hansen and Skychai
Racing and trained by Mike Maker, Hansen comes into the Derby off a runner-up
finish in last month’s Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (GI) at Keeneland. Ramon
Dominguez has the mount on Hansen, listed at 10-1 on the morning line and who
will break from post position 14.
The other Grade I winners in the field are Donegal Racing’s Dullahan (Toyota
Blue Grass), Heinz Steinmann’s Creative Cause (Norfolk), WinStar Farm’s
Gemologist (Wood Memorial), Chuck and Maribeth Sandford’s Take Charge Indy
(Florida Derby), J. Paul Reddam’s I’ll Have Another (Santa Anita Derby) and
Arnold Zetcher’s Liaison (CashCall Futurity).
Grade II winners in the field are
U.A.E. Derby victor Daddy Long Legs, owned by Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor
and Derrick Smith, John Oxley’s Prospective (Tampa Bay Derby) and Let’s
Go Stable’s El Padrino (Risen Star).
The Grade III winners slated to go
postward Saturday afternoon are Winchell Thoroughbreds’ Sabercat (Delta
Jackpot), Cathy and Bob Zollars’ Daddy Nose Best (Sunland Derby and El Camino
Real Derby), Godolphin Racing’s Alpha (Withers), Shivananda Racing’s Trinniberg
(Bay Shore and Swale), Skeedattle Stable’s Done Talking (Illinois Derby) and
Team Valor International and Mark Ford’s Went the Day Well (Spiral).
In addition to Baffert and Matz, three other trainers will be trying to get
another whiff of the roses: Graham Motion, Todd Pletcher and D. Wayne Lukas.
Motion, who saddled Animal Kingdom
to victory last year, will send out Went the Day Well. A victory Saturday would
make Motion, Team Valor and jockey John Velazquez the first
trainer-owner-jockey team to win back-to-back Kentucky Derbys since 1972-73
when Riva Ridge and Secretariat won for Meadow Stable under Ron Turcotte for
trainer Lucien Laurin.
Pletcher, who will send out
Gemologist and El Padrino, claimed his initial Kentucky Derby victory in 2010
with Super Saver for WinStar.
Lukas, who will send out Bluegrass
Hall’s Optimizer, is a four-time Kentucky Derby winner. His victories came with
Winning Colors (1988), Thunder Gulch (1995), Grindstone (1996) and Charismatic
In addition to Velazquez, two other
riders will be seeking to enhance their Kentucky Derby resumes: Calvin Borel
and Kent Desormeaux, both three-time Derby winners.
Borel, who will ride Take Charge
Indy, captured the roses in 2007 with Street Sense, 2009 with Mine That Bird
and 2010 with Super Saver.
Desormeaux, who has the mount on
Dullahan, got his Kentucky Derby wins in 1998 with Real Quiet, 2000 with
Fusaichi Pegasus and in 2008 with Big Brown.
The field for the 138th Kentucky Derby, from the rail out with morning line
odds, is as follows: Daddy Long Legs (Colm O’Donoghue, 30-1), Optimizer (Jon
Court, 50-1), Take Charge Indy (Calvin Borel, 15-1), Union Rags (Julien
Leparoux, 9-2), Dullahan (Kent Desormeaux, 8-1), Bodemeister (Mike Smith, 4-1),
Rousing Sermon (Jose Lezcano, 50-1), Creative Cause (Joel Rosario, 12-1),
Trinniberg (Willie Martinez, 50-1), Daddy Nose Best (Garrett Gomez, 15-1),
Alpha (Rajiv Maragh, 15-1), Prospective (Luis Contreras, 30-1), Went the Day
Well (John Velazquez, 20-1), Gemologist (Javier Castellano, 6-1), El Padrino
(Rafael Bejarano, 20-1), Done Talking (Sheldon Russell, 50-1), Sabercat (Corey
Nakatani, 30-1), I’ll Have Another (Mario Gutierrez, 12-1) and Liaison (Martin
Garcia, 50-1). Also Eligible: My Adonis (Elvis Trujillo, 50-1). All starters
will carry 126 pounds.