Derby Radar: Big Lake scores on the stretchout for Asmussen

Derby Radar: Big Lake scores on the stretchout for Asmussen
Photo: Rob Simmons / Eclipse Sportswire

Trying two turns for the first time and adding Lasix in his third start, Big Lake came storming down the stretch to earn his diploma at Fair Grounds on Saturday for Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen.

Big Lake -- who was ridden by James Graham after Ricardo Santana Jr. took off all his mounts on Saturday -- raced near the rear of the field as Scarlet Fusion set a pace of 24.04, 48.71 and 1:13.94 for six furlongs.

Scarlet Fusion continued to motor on the lead into the stretch and looked poised to prevail, but Big Lake was just finding his best stride and got up late to nail Scarlet Fusion by  a head on the wire. 

Scarlet Fusion finished two lengths clear of favorite Dolder Grand with Cash Rocket rounding out the superfecta. 

Big Lake is a son of Triple Crown winner American Pharoah and is the first of his dam, Resistivity, by Student Council. A homebred for Mike G. Rutherford, Big Lake's previous two starts both were going seven furlongs at Churchill Downs. He was third on debut in September and came back a month later to be seventh after bobbling at the starts.

Both of those starts came without Lasix. If he is to move on to the Kentucky Derby trail, he will again need to race without the anti-bleeding medication per the rules of Churchill Downs. 

Big Lake returned $12.80 for the win.

About the Derby Radar

Back for the 2021 Kentucky Derby trail, Horse Racing Nation's Derby Radar seeks to identify promising maiden, allowance and even stakes winners who could target points-paying preps down the line. We'll cover the buzz horses, of course, then using a systematic approach based on past years' Derby contenders identify other talented colts moving up the ladder.

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