In Sunday's Grade I Hollywood Derby at Betfair Hollywood Park, Golden Ticket, who finished in a dead heat with Alpha
in the Grade I Travers Stakes Aug. 25 at Saratoga, will make only his
second start on turf.
A son of Speightstown and the Deputy Minister mare Business Plan
owned by Magic City Thoroughbred Partners and trained by Ken McPeek,
Golden Ticket has won two of 11 while earning $648,335. He was second
behind Finnegans Wake in a maiden race at Gulfstream Park on New Year’s
Day in his sole race on grass.
The Irish-bred Rjwa will try to become the first filly to win the
Derby since Royal Heroine in 1983. Owned by Sheikh Joann Bin Hamad Al
Thani and trained by Francois Rohaud, the 3-year-old daughter of
Muhtathir and the Flag Down mare Minallon has won two of eight and
earned $293,731. In her most recent start, she was fifth in the Group I
Prix de’l’Opera Longines Oct. 7 at Longchamp. In June, Rjwa was third in
the Group I French Oaks.
Motion will send out a pair – Lucky Chappy and General Logan in search of his first Derby victory.
Owned by Team Valor International, Lucky Chappy has won two of 11.
The son of High Chaparral and the Distant Relative mare Germane has
Bred in Kentucky and owned by Jack Swain III,
General Logan arrives having won three in a row at Presque Isle Downs
and Keeneland. The Exchange Rate gelding out of the General Meeting mare
Dancing General has earned $84,750. The Derby will be his initial
appearance in a graded race. He was fourth at Presque Isle in his debut
Aug. 1 before beginning his win streak.
Unbridled Command has won four in a row for Lewis Lakin and trainer Tom Bush, including a Grade III victory in the Saranac Sept. 2 at Saratoga.
A New York bred son of Master Command and the Unbridled’s Song mare
Unbridled Betty, Unbridled Command is 5-for-9 in his career with
earnings of $319,040. He hasn’t lost since finishing third in a state
bred allowance May 26 at Belmont Park.
Handsome Mike will try to rebound from a ninth place finish in the Breeders’ Cup Classic Nov. 3 at Santa Anita.
A Scat Daddy colt out of the Smart Strike mare Classic Strike,
Handsome Mike has won twice in 11 starts and earned $756,780. His most
significant victory for owner Reddam Racing LLC and trainer Doug O’Neill was a 19-1 upset in the Grade II Pennsylvania Derby Sept. 22 at Parx.
Handsome Mike broke his maiden on turf Oct. 16, 2011 at Santa Anita
when trained by Melody Conlon for owner John Liviakis and was second
behind Stoney Fleece over the local turf in the Grade III Generous Stakes six weeks later.
Grandeur and Speaking of Which, the 1-2 finishers in the Grade II
Twilight Derby Nov. 2 at Santa Anita, will tangle again Sunday.
Owned by Yvonne Jacques and trained by Jeremy Noseda, Grandeur
finished a half-length in front of Speaking of Which in Arcadia in his
United States debut.
A gelded son of Verglas and the Desert Sun mare Misskinta, Grandeur has won five of 10 and earned $198,438.
Weld trains Speaking of Which for owner-breeder Moyglare Stud Farm,
Ltd. The Invincible Spirit colt out of the Mr. Prospector mare Suitably
Discreet has two wins in five starts and has banked $91,998.
Like Unbridled Command, Summer Front is shipping from New York. The
War Front colt out of the El Prado mare Rose of Summer has won five of
nine and earned $405,800 for Waterford Stable and Clement. The lone
graded win for the Kentucky bred came in the Grade III Hill Prince June 16 at Belmont, but he has been third in a pair of Grade I events in his last two starts.
Summer Front wound up 2 1/2 lengths behind Bayrir in the Secretariat
Aug. 18 at Arlington Park before finishing 1 ¼ lengths back of King
David in the Jamaica Handicap Oct. 6 at Belmont.
Fifth in the Twilight Derby, My Best Brother returns to the scene of
his first two wins for owner-breeders Bill Currin and Al Eisman and
trainer Julio Canani.
The Stormy Atlantic colt and the Carson City mare Wilshewed defeated
maidens at six furlongs and won an optional claimer at one mile during
the Spring/Summer meet, then took the restricted Oceanside Stakes and
Grade II Del Mar Derby at Del Mar. He’s earned $346,090 with four wins
in nine attempts. Canani won the 1988 Derby with Silver Circus.
Hall of Fame trainer Richard Mandella, who won the Derby 10 years
ago with Johar, will be represented by Smart Ellis and Power Foot.
A Smarty Jones colt out of the El Gran Senor mare Corrazona, Smart
Ellis, who was third in the Twilight Derby, has won two of eight for
owner-breeders Alain and Gerard Wertheimer and has a bankroll of
Owned and bred by the Schow Family Trust, Power Foot was sixth in
the Twilight Derby in his first race for Mandella. The son of
Powerscourt and the Black Minnaloushe mare Madame Blackfoot has one win
in six starts and earnings of $62,384.
Power Foot’s victory was achieved in his first outing of 2012. The
Kentucky bred defeated maidens by a neck as a 36-1 shot May 28 going 8 ½
furlongs over the Betfair Hollywood Park turf.
Big Bane Theory steps into graded company after consecutive wins for
owner-breeders Mark Devereaux and Scott Gross and trainer Carla Gaines.
The Artie Schiller colt out of the Alysheba mare Shebane has started
three times and earned $93,720.
Fourth in the Twilight Derby, All Squared Away was a late nominee
for $5,000 –as were General Logan, Groovin’ Solo and Rjwa – to the local
Derby. Trained by Peter Miller for a partnership that includes Brous
Stable, Wachtel Stable and Wire to Wire Stables, the Bellamy Road
gelding out of the Posse mare Squared has won three of 16 and earned
All Squared Away’s turf win came in an optional claimer Aug. 12 at Del Mar.
Trained by owner-breeder Myung Kwon Cho, Groovin’ Solo is the Derby
also-eligible. The son of Bob and John and the Summer Squall mare Squall
Linda has one win in eight starts and earnings of $38,990. He has yet
to race on turf.
From inside out, the field for the Hollywood Derby: Big Bane Theory,
Joe Talamo, 122; Handsome Mike, Mario Gutierrez, 122; Unbridled
Command, Javier Castellano, 122; Grandeur, Garrett Gomez, 122; Smart
Ellis, Corey Nakatani, 122; Golden Ticket, Mike Smith, 122; Power Foot,
Edwin Maldonado, 122; Rjwa, Thierry Jarnet, 119; My Best Brother, Martin
Garcia, 122; Lucky Chappy, Julien Leparoux, 122; Speaking of Which,
Patrick Smullen, 122; All Squared Away, Rafael Bejarano, 122; Summer
Front, Ramon Dominguez, General Logan, Eddie Castro, 122 and Groovin’
Solo, Brice Blanc, 122.