Game Winner, the champion 2-year-old of 2018, and his multiple-stakes winning stablemate Mucho Gusto head the nominees to the $150,000-guaranteed Los Alamitos Derby.
The Grade III, which will be run at 1 1/8 miles, will be contested for the sixth time at Los Alamitos Saturday, July 13.
Owned by Gary and Mary West and trained by Hall of Famer Bob Baffert, Game Winner has won four of seven and earned $1,936,000. He has been idle since finishing fifth – via disqualification – after an extremely wide trip in the Kentucky Derby May 4.
The 3-year-old Candy Ride colt out of the A.P. Indy mare Indyan Giving was perfect in four 2018 races and clinched his Eclipse Award with a decisive score in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile last Nov. 2 at Churchill Downs.
Trained by Baffert, who has won the Los Alamitos Derby three of the last four years – including the last two with West Coast (2017) and Once On Whiskey (2018) – Mucho Gusto comes off consecutive Grade III victories for owner Michael Lund Petersen.
The son of Mucho Macho Man and the Giant's Causeway mare Itsagiantcauseway, Mucho Gusto won the Lazaro Barrera at seven furlongs May 18 before capturing the Affirmed at 1 1/16 miles 29 days later. He's 5-for-7 in his career with earnings of $430,800.
The other nominees include Feeling Strong, Real Master, a French bred who has been idle since winning over a synthetic track at Deauville Jan. 5, Vantastic, and the Baffert-trained Kingly.
Entries for the Los Alamitos Derby will taken Wednesday, July 10.
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