Fair Grounds racing secretary Jason Boulet
reminds horsemen that “Early Bird” nominations to the 98th running of the
Grade II Louisiana Derby – to be contested for a purse of
$1 million for the first time this year – close
Monday, Dec. 13.
bird nominations to the annual centerpiece of the Fair Grounds meeting
are $500 and also include automatic nominations to the Grade III
$100,000 Lecomte Stakes, to be run at one mile and 40 yards on Road to
the Derby Kickoff Day, Jan. 22, as well as the Grade II, $300,000 Risen
Star Stakes, to be contested at 1 1/16-miles on Louisiana Derby Preview
Day, Feb. 19.
SUPERIOR STORM SEEKING ‘LUCKY’ KARMA SATURDAY
Jac Mac Stable’s
Superior Storm, who successfully defended her championship in the $100,000
Louisiana Champions Day Ladies Stakes
last year, will attempt a “three-peat” this Saturday in that filly and
mare fixture – one of the highlights of the 20th anniversary edition of
the upcoming weekend’s
Louisiana Champions Day at Fair Grounds.
Storm has been installed as the 6-5 choice in the morning line for the
Ladies, but that favoritism is based largely on her demonstrated
ability winning the race by two lengths two years ago and repeating
that score in last year’s renewal by “gutting out” a length and a half
win over a sloppy track obviously not to her liking.
However, it turns out that Fair Grounds-based trainer
Morris Nicks and Superior Storm’s conditioner
are a superstitious duo, so the 5-year-old mare is once again in
residence in Nicks’ barn and in the same stall that she has occupied
during her previous
road trips for Fair Grounds’ Louisiana Champions Day.
I told him I was putting her in the same stall she has had in past
years he just gave me a great big grin,” said Nicks of the temporary
living arrangements for the mare. “We’ve known each other for a lot of
years, and I know he’s a very superstitious guy, and so am I. It doesn’t
hurt to hope luck will be a lady to her once again. He (Jackson) will
be getting back in town Friday to saddle her
Three years ago Superior Storm won the Louisiana Champions Day Lassie while a 2-year-old. Along with Brittlyn Stable’s
Star Guitar, who won last
year’s $150,000 Louisiana Champions Day Classic, the two defending
champions could become the first horses to win four Louisiana Champions
Day races in history.