A wide-open Kentucky Derby Saturday left many horsemen in the Hollywood Park stable area scratching their heads Thursday but the three entrants most often mentioned to win the Run for the Roses were morning-line favorite Dialed In, Archarcharch and Nehro.
A sample of horsemen’s opinions:
Hall of Fame trainer Jack Van Berg, who won the 1987 Derby with Alysheba—“I like Archarcharch. He runs where it counts. He finishes well. I like Pants On Fire too.”
Retired Hall of Fame jockey Eddie Delahoussaye, who won the Derby with Gato Del Sol in 1982 and Sunny‘s Halo in 1983—“I’m going for my good friend, Jinks Fires (trainer of Archarcharch). I’ve known him and his family for many years. It’s a wide-open race and he was impressive winning the Arkansas Derby.”
Trainer Barry Abrams—“Dialed In. He’s very consistent. He’s got a good post, a good trainer and he’s got the right style.”
Trainer Jim Kasparoff—“My wife, Danielle, got Dialed In at 35-1 in Las Vegas in December. We went there to get married on opening day of Santa Anita and made the future book bet at Caesar’s Palace.’’
Trainer Mark Glatt—“Maybe Archarcharch, even with the rail draw. I think he’ll handle the distance well and we’ll see what kind of trip he can get.”
Trainer Art Sherman—“I’m going for Archarcharch. I’m going for (jockey) Jon Court to come through. There should be enough speed in front of him, and he’ll be laying in there on the rail.”
Trainer Bobby Troeger—“(Trainer Bob) Baffert with Midnight Interlude. He’s a local guy. You’ve got to root for the home team.”
Trainer Carl O’Callagahan—“Dialed In. I think (trainer Nick) Zito always shows up in big time. The horse ran well in Florida.”
Trainer Vladimir Cerin—“I think Jon Court has a shot (with Archarcharch). The rail is the shortest way around.”
Trainer David Bernstein—“I like Dialed In, which doesn’t surprise anybody, but it’s no slam dunk.”
Trainer Melody Conlon—“I like Nehro. I like him because he closes and should stay out of trouble.”
Dan Ward, assistant to trainer Jerry Hollendorfer—“I like Zito (with Dialed In.) He’s a nice guy, and the year I was back there, he said his horse, Strike The Gold (1991), was going to win. Dialed In is not going to be bothered by a mile and a quarter or a big crowd.”
Larry Benavidez, assistant to trainer John Sadler—“Dialed In to beat Mucho Macho Man.”
Jockey Alonso Quinonez—“Baffert’s horse, Midnight Interlude. He won the Santa Anita Derby impressively. In the morning, he’s a superhorse. He’s fresh too.”
Jockey Joe Steiner—“I like Nehro. He was coming on strong in the last part in his last two races.”
Martin Panza, vice president-racing—“I’m all Dialed In.”
Jockey agent Scotty McClellan—“I like Dialed In, and I like Nehro. They should both like a mile and a quarter.”
Jockey agent Richie Silverstein—“Nehro. I think he’ll go that far.”
Jockey agent Brian Beach—“I like Stay Thirsty and Nehro. Uncle Mo has gotten all the attention in the Stay Thirsty barn, and people forget that he also has some talent.”
The Kentucky Derby will be simulcast here Saturday afternoon during a card that will begin at 11 a.m.
BAFFERT, MILLER, BONDE SEEK STAKES DOUBLES
Trainers Bob Baffert, Peter Miller and Jeff Bonde will be at Churchill Downs Saturday with Kentucky Derby entrants Midnight Interlude, Comma to the Top and Twice the Appeal, respectively, but they will also have stakes hopes at Hollywood Park.
Baffert and Miller will also clash in the featured $150,000 Mervyn LeRoy Handicap with Spurrier and Coffee Boy, respectively, while Bonde will send out probable favorite Cambina in quest of her fourth straight stakes victory in the $100,000 Senorita Stakes.
LEADING RIDER ROSARIO A FATHER
Jockey Joel Rosario, leading the current standings in quest of a third straight meet riding title, is a father for the first time.
Rosario and his wife, Breanna, welcomed a son, Liam Ray, who checked in at seven pounds, three ounces, Tuesday.
FINISH LINES—The only Friday matinee of the current meet tomorrow will include a simulcast of the Kentucky Oaks. The 13-horse lineup includes the John Sadler -trained Zazu with Joel Rosario, the Bob Baffert -trained Plum Pretty with Martin Garcia and morning-line favorite Joyful Victory with Mike Smith …Jockey agent Scotty McClellan said that Joe Talamo will fly to Kentucky tonight to ride three stakes on the Kentucky Oaks undercard Friday and fly back Friday night to ride here Saturday…Acclamation worked seven furlongs on turf in 1:29 for defense of his Jim Murray Memorial Handicap crown May 14. Three other Jim Murray candidates also worked on the grass: Soul Candy, five furlongs in 1:04.20; Restless Soul, six furlongs in 1:15.40; and Buenos Dias, seven furlongs in 1:26.20…Trainer Carl O’Callaghan reported that millionaire globe-trotting sprinter Kinsale King has been turned out for a vacation. “His blood is all out of wack,” said O’Callaghan. “That travel all over the world caught up with us. He will spend 60 days at Magali Farms and then be pointed to the Bing Crosby at Del Mar.”…Trainer Art Sherman said that B. Thoughtful Stakes winner Ultra Blend would return in the $150,000 Milady Handicap May 21, the same day that he plans to enter Pedaltothemetal in the $100,000 Railbird Stakes…Trainer Neil Drysdale said that Santa Margarita Stakes winner Miss Match could return in the Milady and that multiple stakes winner Bourbon Bay is probable for the $250,000 Charles Whittingham Memorial Handicap June 11.
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