The Grade III, $500,000 Ohio Derby is set for Saturday at Thistledown racecourse. The 1 1/8-mile heat drew a field of seven three-year-olds looking to add to their credentials. Post time for the Ohio Derby, Race 9 on a 10-race program, is 5:10 p.m. ET.
#2 OWENDALE (9-5, morning-line favorite) was third in the Preakness Stakes when last seen despite rallying seven-wide. The two horses that beat him, War of Will and Everfast, ran poorly in the Belmont Stakes three weeks later, but their performance in that anomalous heat should not be held against the son of Into Mischief.
OWENDALE has two prior victories this year, including his score in Keeneland’s Lexington Stakes two starts ago. The deep closer should get a strong pace to work with as both BETHLEHEM ROAD and DRAW DAY drew wide. GOING FOR GOLD and even GLOBAL CAMPAIGN could infuse early speed into the proceedings. Florent Geroux just has to work out the right trip in the Ohio Derby.
#4 GLOBAL CAMPAIGN (3-1) took a solid lead into the stretch in Belmont’s Peter Pan last time out and held off the late bid of eventual Belmont Stakes winner Sir Winston. It was a solid bounce-back effort off his middling fifth in the Fountain of Youth. Aside from that one hiccup, GLOBAL CAMPAIGN is perfect in his brief career. Luis Saez will be charged with rationing the speed of this son Curlin in the Ohio Derby.
#3 LONG RANGE TODDY (5-2) was arguably the most troubled runner in the now-infamous far turn incident perpetrated by Maximum Security in the Kentucky Derby. He probably wasn’t winning that day anyway, as he showed an aversion for the slop in the Arkansas Derby two starts back. LONG RANGE TODDY has a respectable 7-4-1-1 record on fast dirt, which he is likely to get at Thistledown on Saturday. Jon Court is in to ride for Steve Asmussen.
The play: $6 exacta 2/4, $2 exacta 2/3, $2 exacta 4/2 ($10)
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