Wednesday's $200,000 Zia Park Derby at the New Mexico oval has drawn a strong field of 12 sophomores to line up in the starting gate for the 1 1/16 mile contest. Shipping in from Southern California, Dalmore is the morning-line favorite for trainer Keith Desormeaux.
Most recently second to Texas Chrome in the Super Derby, Dalmore has been working steadily at Santa Anita since early October, and gets the services of top jockey Kent Desormeaux in the irons. Earlier in the season, the son of Colonel John won the G3 Affirmed Stakes at Santa Anita, predicating a fifth-place effort in the Pacific Classic against California Chrome and Beholder.
Second-choice on the morning line will be the Doug O'Neill-trained Semper Fortis, a graded stakes-placed son of Distorted Humor. Though the colt has been winless in his 2016 campaign, he was second two starts back in the Los Alamitos Derby, beaten just a head by Accelerate. Mario Gutierrez will ship in to ride, and the colt will race without blinkers for the first time.
Trainer Larry Jones will send out No Distortion, winner of Monmouth Park's Long Branch Stakes, with Gabriel Saez in the irons. Also likely to pose a threat are the Boyd Caster-trained Pass the Buck, fourth on an unlucky trip in the G3 Oklahoma Derby, and the Danny Pish-trained Mending Fences, coming in off a layoff since finishing fourth in the G3 Super Derby.
Here is the full field for the $200,000 Zia Park Derby:
- Concord Fast (Ry Eikleberry) 12-1
- Phantom Trip (David Cabrera) 10-1
- Semper Fortis (Mario Gutierrez) 4-1
- No Distortion (Gabriel Saez) 8-1
- Dalmore (Kent Desormeaux) 3-1
- Let's Meet In Rio (Stewart Elliott) 20-1
- Inside Straight (Geovanni Franco) 15-1
- Deputy's Echo (Elvin Gonzalez) 20-1
- Way Striking (Andrew Ramgeet) 6-1
- Mending Fences (Ted Gondron) 8-1
- Pass the Buck (Luis Quinonez) 5-1
- Cowboy Cool (Gonzalo Nicolas) 30-1
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