Sent postward as the heavy favorite, G M B Racing's Mo Tom and jockey Javier Castellano stayed clear of trouble to win Saturday's $500,000 Ohio Derby, making their way to the wire first by three lengths. The sophomore son of Uncle Mo was making his first start since finishing eighth in the Kentucky Derby, and covered nine furlongs over JACK Thistledown Racino's fast main track in 1:51.82 for trainer Tom Amoss.
The late-running Mo Tom broke steadily, and took up position along the inside rail at the very back of the nine-horse field. Castellano allowed the colt to settle, then picked him up and placed him into the race a bit down the backstretch, keeping him within seven lengths of the leaders. Out of the gate the quickest was Mo Don't No along the inside, joined by Cocked and Loaded and Decorated Solider in a three-way rush for the early lead. Mo Don't No led the way by a head through a first quarter in :23.84 and a half in :48.82, then Cocked and Loaded took over from the two-path to mark three-quarters in 1:13.60. Mo Tom continued to make his way toward the frontrunners, and was within five lengths but behind a wall of horses mid-way through the turn.
At the last minute, Castellano angled Mo Tom four-wide to make his bid for the Ohio Derby honors. With a quarter of a mile to run, Mo Tom went around Discreet Lover as that rival drifted out a bit on the turn, then just had Cocked and Loaded, loose with a one-length lead, left to catch. Mo Tom changed leads smoothly and was set down for the drive, passing Cocked and Loaded easily and drawing off to win by three lengths. Adventist closed from well back to finish second, and Discreet Lover held on to be third. Cocked and Loaded faded to fourth.
Bred in Kentucky by Hargus, Sandra Sexton, and Silver Fern Farm, Mo Tom hammered for $150,000 at the Keeneland September Sale. The Tom Amoss trainee spent the winter on Louisiana's Fair Grounds Road to the Kentucky Derby, winning the LeComte Stakes but finding trouble in both the Risen Star and the Louisiana Derby, where he was third and fourth, respectively. Following this Ohio Derby victory, Mo Tom's career record stands at four wins and three thirds from nine starts, with earnings of just under $600,000.
New to the Paulick Report? Click here to sign up for our daily email newsletter to keep up on this and other stories happening in the Thoroughbred industry.
Copyright © 2019 Paulick Report.