Nadal seeks to preserve undefeated record in Arkansas Derby

Saturday’s Grade I, $500,000 Arkansas Derby (1 1/8-miles) was split into two divisions by Oaklawn Park. Here is our preview of division two, the 13th race on the program, led by morning-line favorite NADAL. Estimated post time is 7:43 p.m. ET. For our preview of division one, click here.

#5 NADAL (5-2), a perfect 3-for-3 lifetime, was most impressive in the Rebel Stakes over this course when last seen. He assumed command through swift fractions, never getting a chance to relax, but held off all pursuers. NADAL is working strongly for his return for Bob Baffert in the Arkansas Derby and retains Joel Rosario. His speed figures are among the best in the group and his form is highly reliable.

#4 KING GUILLERMO (3-1) is capable of producing a minor upset, if his 49-1 score in the Tampa Bay Derby wasn’t a fluke. The speed figure suggests the son of Uncle Mo is among the best of his crop. KING GUILLERMO could work out the ideal stalking trip in the Arkansas Derby under Samy Camacho.

#7 SILVER PROSPECTOR (10-1) fits with these based on his victory in the Southwest Stakes two starts ago. His form this year is otherwise obscured by muddy-track efforts. Ricardo Santana Jr. has the call on SILVER PROSPECTOR for Steve Asmussen.

The play: $6 exacta 5/4, $4 exacta 5/7, $4 exacta 4/5, $2 exacta box 4/7, $2 exacta 7/5 ($24)

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