State Bred Stars Compete at Fair Grounds
March 25, 2015 01:29pm
Among the eight stakes races on Saturday’s Louisiana Derby Day card at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots are a quartet of events to showcase Louisiana-bred stars. The $75,000 Crescent City Oaks, the $75,000 Crescent City Derby, the $60,000 Costa Rising Stakes and the $60,000 Star Guitar Stakes will be run as the fourth through seventh races on a 14-race card.


$75,000 Crescent City Oaks: For 3-year-old fillies at one mile and 70 yards on the main track, the Crescent City Oaks attracted a trio of stakes winners, led by Gary Scherer and Al and Bill Ulwelling’s Wind Chill Factor. The three-time stakes-winning daughter of Successful Appeal exits a disappointing effort in the Azalea Stakes at Delta Downs in which she may have a built-in excuse after racing on an off track for the first time. Denny Velazquez picks up the mount on the Gary Scherer trainee from post two.


Maggi Moss’ Tom Amoss-trained Sibling War captured her first stakes when getting the best of four of her Crescent City Oaks rivals in Delta’s Azalea Stakes. Twice a winner around two turns, the daughter of Brother Derek has been a model of consistency in her 3-year-old season and is reunited with Fair Grounds leading rider James Graham from post nine.


James ‘Sweet’ Hodges sends out Southern Legacy Thoroughbreds’ Private Promise, a 30-1 winner of Delta’s Premier Night Starlet Stakes in February. A three-time winner, the daughter of Private Vow has traded decisions with many of her Oaks competitors in recent starts and exits a fourth-place effort in the Azalea Stakes. Gerard Melancon picks up the mount from post six.


Completing the Crescent City Oaks field are: Forest Lake (Hector Santiago, rail), My Ruston (Benito Morales, post three), Major Ashworth (Joe Talamo, post four), Escalady (Kent Desormeaux, post five), Safari Calamari (Richard Eramia, post seven), Pacific Pink (Robby Albarado, post eight), Discreetly Grand (Florent Geroux, post 10) and Rue Bellamy (Miguel Mena, post 11).


$75,000 Crescent City Derby: Susan Moulton’s Glenn Delahoussaye-trained Cat Sup will look for his second stakes score in a row after getting the good end of a photo finish in Delta’s Pelican Stakes earlier this month. The son of Discreet Cat has been in the exacta in all four of his career tries around two turns and will be paired with Kerwin Clark from post 12 in the 1 1/16-miles main track event.


Looking to turn the tables on Cat Sup is Whispering Oaks Farm’s Four Leaf Chief, who missed by a nose when his massive late rally into a soft pace fell short in the Pelican Stakes. The son of Lookin at Lucky will be ridden again by Gerard Melancon from post 10.


Nolan Creek Farm’s Mystery Gate, never beaten on the main track for trainer Wes Hawley, handled a pair of his Derby competitors last out when holding firm late at one mile on the Fair Grounds main track. His two main track wins have come at a one-mile distance with a sixteenth-pole finish line, and the son of Lydgate will look to stretch his stamina the full length of the Fair Grounds stretch under regular rider Miguel Mena from post six.


The remainder of the Crescent City Derby field is: Just Stormin (Robby Albarado, rail), Grande Basin (Brian Hernandez, Jr., post two), Finishlikeapro (Richard Eramia, post three), Runaway Ide (Benito Morales, post four), Grit (Colby Hernandez, post five), Charlie’s Affair (Roberto Morales, post seven), Mobile Bay (James Graham, post eight), Cajun Spirit (Francisco Torres, post nine), Quieta Tiz (Joe Talamo, post 11), King of Honour (Billy Patin, post 13) and Where Y’at Joe Joe (Kent Desormeaux, post 14)


$60,000 Costa Rising Stakes: Louisiana-bred sprinters take to the turf course in the Costa Rising, slated for 5½ grassy furlongs. Rowell Enterprises’ speedy multi-surface performer Heitai headlines the Costa Rising as he moves back to the grass – a surface over which he has never been beaten in three career tries. The blazing-fast son of Fusaichi Pegasus has won 13 times and banked $883,543 in his career and has rattled off two easy wins since moving into the barn of meet-leading trainer Tom Amoss. James Graham has the call from post nine.


Patricia Chennault’s Joseph Foster-trained Cole’s Magic Vow will look to turn the tables on Heitai after finishing third behind him in Delta’s Premier Night Sprint in February. The stakes-winning son of Private Vow exits a facile allowance win at Delta and will team once again with Donnie Meche from post six.


Both Jerry and Terry Wheeler’s Tallahatchie Luke and owner-trainer Peter Orlando’s King Bandit enter the Costa Rising attempting to complete a hat-trick of wins, as each owns a two-race winning streak. Tallahatchie Luke has found his best form for new trainer Karl Broberg and will look to transfer his sharp recent form to the grass under rider Jamie Theriot from post eight, while King Bandit will make his turf debut off a pair of six-furlong main track scores at the meet. Kerwin Clark will ride from post two.


Completing the Costa Rising field are: Marv in Lafitte (Brian Hernandez, Jr., rail), Sun Shadow (Marcelino Pedroza, post three), Knockitdownhard (Miguel Mena, post four), Win Lion Win (Roberto Morales, post five), Brilliant Interest (Francisco Torres, post seven), Benwill (Robby Albarado, post 10) and Red Production (Florent Geroux, post 11).


$60,000 Star Guitar Stakes: Kenneth and Sarah Ramsey’s One King’s Man, cross-entered in the Grade II New Orleans Handicap by trainer Joe Sharp, will loom a large presence and a heavy favorite should his connections opt to run him in the Star Guitar Stakes at 1 1/16 miles on the main track. A three-time winner in four starts since being claimed by his current connections, the son of K One King stamped himself a leading older Louisiana-bred horse when winning Delta’s Premier Night Championship, handling millionaire Sunbean by more than three lengths in the process. Brian Hernandez, Jr. has been named to ride from post four.


Should One King’s Man head to the New Orleans Handicap, What Else Racing’s Heavy On Themister may inherit the role of the one to beat. Second last out on the grass in the Dixie Poker Ace Stakes, the Ron Faucheux-trained son of Lion Tamer won back-to-back main track events against allowance company in his two starts prior to the Dixie Poker Ace. Miguel Mena has the return call from the rail draw.


Autumn Hill Farms’ Hopeful Notion will look to regain the form that made him a stakes winner last year as he moves back to the main track after a modest effort in the Dixie Poker Ace. Trained by Eddie Johnston, the son of Notional will make his third start off the layoff and will be paired with Robby Albarado from post two.


The remainder of the Star Guitar field is: Tiger Run (Denny Velazquez, post three), Udoknowjack (Jocelyne Gomez, post five), Bluffalatta (Colby Hernandez, post six), Galveston Harbor (Francisco Torres, post seven), Populist Politics (Gerard Melancon, post eight), Watch My Smoke (Willie Martinez, post nine) and Beauty’s Pioneer (James Graham, post 10).

Source: Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots


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