|COZEGGI WINNING THE AMERICAN DERBY ON SATURDAY|
(Four Footed Foto)
Two of Romans’ five ran in the American Derby (Gr. III) at Arlington on Saturday (July 14) with his Cozzetti coming up the winner. Undefeated Silver Max was scratched and is a hopeful for the Derby. His other pair, Dullahan and Finnegans Wake, are both owned by Jerry Crawford’s Donegal Racing group who captured Colonial’s 2010 Turf Cup and Virginia Derby with Paddy O’Prado. The former was third in the Kentucky Derby and seventh most recently in the Belmont, while the latter finished fourth to stablemate Silver Max in the Grade II American Turf at Churchill May 4th.
Christophe Clemente, who trained ’08 Virginia Derby winner Gio Ponti, nominated Easy Crossing and Summer Front, both impressive turf candidates. The first, an English Channel colt, has two wins and three runner-ups in five turf starts while Summer Front is a perfect 4-for-4 on grass, scoring most recently in the Grade III Hill Prince Stakes on June 16th.
Graham Motion nominated a trio including Howe Great and Lucky Chappy, both owned by Team Valor International. They have respective turf earnings of $227,653 and $154,877. The former was a close second to Summer Front in the Hill Prince while the latter has been idle since a seventh place outing in the Grade II UAE Derby in Dubai on March 31st.
Mike Maker nominated Gung Ho, who captured the $150,000 Sunday Silence Stakes at Louisiana Downs last fall, and Morgan’s Guerilla, who has done well on dirt including a second in the Illinois Derby to Ham Smith’s Done Talking, who also was nominated.
Todd Pletcher, who has collected Virginia Derby wins with English Channel in ’05 and Red Giant in ’07, nominated Star Channel, a son of that ’05 winner.
|SILVER MAX (Keeneland Photo)|
D. Wayne Lukas nominated Optimizer, who competed in all three Triple Crown legs this spring, and Skyring who was third in the American Derby on Saturday.
King Kreesa, on a roll with three turf wins and a runner up in his last four, was nominated by trainer Jeremiah Englehart. The two most recent wins have come at Belmont and the prior was at Aqueduct.
The post position draw for next Saturday’s Virginia Derby will be at Hooter’s Restaurant on West Broad Street in Richmond this Wednesday July 18th at 1 PM.
The Derby Day card itself includes five stakes and a total of 14 races beginning at 5 PM. Other stakes include the $150,000 Virginia Oaks (Gr. III) and a trio of $50,000 stakes – the Kitten’s Joy, Chenery and Tippett. The quintet will be bundled into an All Stakes, All Turf Pick-5 wager. Post time for the Derby is 8:38 PM.
All 14 races will be televised live on HRTV.