Ky. Derby prep: Instant Coffee leads 12 into Louisiana Derby

Ky. Derby prep: Instant Coffee leads 12 into Louisiana Derby
Photo: Carson Dennis / Eclipse Sportswire

Instant Coffee, one of the top four choices in futures betting for Kentucky Derby 2023, drew post 2 and was made the 2-1 morning-line favorite for the 110th Grade 2, $1 million Louisiana Derby next Saturday at Fair Grounds.

The winner of the 1 1/16-mile Lecomte (G3) in his 3-year-old debut last out in January, the Bolt d’Oro colt owned by Al Gold and trained by Brad Cox will be ridden by Luis Sáez against 11 other 3-year-olds.

Click here for Fair Grounds entries and results.

Next weekend’s 1 3/16-mile race will award the top five finishers with 100-40-30-20-10 qualifying points toward the Kentucky Derby. That means the winner will clinch a berth in the May 6 classic, and the second-place finisher also should have enough points to get there.

Sun Thunder, a $400,000 Into Mischief colt who finished second last month in the 1 1/8-mile Risen Star (G2) at Fair Grounds, drew post 4. He is trained by Kenny McPeek and will be ridden by Brian Hernandez Jr., both of whom have one previous win in the Louisiana Derby.

Because of the points they already earned, Instant Coffee and Sun Thunder may need only a top four or five finish next Saturday to earn their place this spring at Churchill Downs.

Kingsbarns, a maiden and allowance winner owned by Spendthrift Farm, will start from post 6 and was given program odds of 6-1 by morning-line writer Mike Diliberto. Trained by four-time Louisiana Derby winner Todd Pletcher and ridden by Flavien Prat, the $800,000 Uncle Mo colt will be making his stakes debut.

Steve Asmussen, who shares the record with Pletcher for most training wins in the Louisiana Derby, seeks his fifth with two starters, namely Disarm (10-1) and Shopper’s Revenge (12-1). Disarm will be ridden by Joel Rosario, who has won the last two runnings of the Louisiana Derby, including last year for Asmussen on eventual 3-year-old male champion Epicenter.

Looking for his second win in this race, Cox also entered Tapit’s Conquest (10-1) and Jace’s Road (12-1), who will be ridden by two-time Louisiana Derby-winning jockey Florent Géroux.

In his bid for a second victory in Fair Grounds’ signature race, McPeek also entered Denington (12-1).

The Louisiana Derby was scheduled to be run next Saturday at 6:42 p.m. EDT as the 12th of 15 races. The closing card for the 80-day Fair Grounds meet is next Sunday.

2023 Louisiana Derby G2

Post Silks Horse / Sire Rating Trainer / Jockey Last Start / Next Start HRN
1 Horse Silk Shopper's Revenge Shopper's Revenge
5.89 Steven M. Asmussen
Ricardo Santana, Jr.
2nd, OP AlwOC (2/18/23-R6) 12-1
Last Race 2nd, OP AlwOC (2/18/23-R6)
2 Horse Silk Instant Coffee Instant Coffee
Bolt d'Oro
6.39 Brad H. Cox
Luis Saez
1st, 2023 Lecomte G3 2-1
Last Race 1st, 2023 Lecomte G3
3 Horse Silk Curly Jack Curly Jack
Good Magic
6.83 Thomas M. Amoss
Edgar Morales
8th, 2023 Risen Star G2 12-1
Last Race 8th, 2023 Risen Star G2
4 Horse Silk Sun Thunder Sun Thunder
Into Mischief
5.42 Kenneth G. McPeek
Brian J. Hernandez, Jr.
2nd, 2023 Risen Star G2 5-1
Last Race 2nd, 2023 Risen Star G2
5 Horse Silk Disarm Disarm
Gun Runner
6.03 Steven M. Asmussen
Joel Rosario
2nd, OP AlwOC (2/19/23-R8) 10-1
Last Race 2nd, OP AlwOC (2/19/23-R8)
6 Horse Silk Kingsbarns Kingsbarns
Uncle Mo
5.27 Todd A. Pletcher
Flavien Prat
1st, Tam AlwOC (2/12/23-R6) 6-1
Last Race 1st, Tam AlwOC (2/12/23-R6)
7 Horse Silk Cagliostro Cagliostro
3.79 Cherie DeVaux
Cristian A. Torres
2nd, FG AlwOC (2/18/23-R8) 12-1
Last Race 2nd, FG AlwOC (2/18/23-R8)
8 Horse Silk Single Ruler Single Ruler
Empire Maker
3.79 J. Keith Desormeaux
David Cohen
5th, 2023 Risen Star G2 15-1
Last Race 5th, 2023 Risen Star G2
9 Horse Silk Tapit's Conquest Tapit's Conquest
6.45 Brad H. Cox
Manuel Franco
4th, 2023 Risen Star G2 10-1
Last Race 4th, 2023 Risen Star G2
10 Horse Silk Denington Denington
Gun Runner
5.71 Kenneth G. McPeek
Junior Alvarado
1st, FG AlwOC (2/18/23-R8) 12-1
Last Race 1st, FG AlwOC (2/18/23-R8)
11 Horse Silk Jace's Road Jace's Road
Quality Road
6.21 Brad H. Cox
Florent Geroux
5th, 2023 Southwest Stakes G3 12-1
Last Race 5th, 2023 Southwest Stakes G3
12 Horse Silk Baseline Beater Baseline Beater
0.00 Neil L. Pessin
Corey J. Lanerie
1st, FG MSW (2/18/23-R7) 20-1
Last Race 1st, FG MSW (2/18/23-R7)

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