We had an exciting weekend of racing as several horses made comebacks, solidified their records as champions and gave us a sneak peak of potential Traver's contenders.
$500,000 Indiana Derby (G3)
The Indiana Derby started off with a bit of a scare when ESKENFORIT dumped jockey Julien Leparoux after stumbling out of the gates. That didn't stop him though, he raced without his jockey near the front of the field and was determined to stay in contention.
Although ESKENFORIT did get in the way of some of his competitors, he didn't stop MR. MONEY, who took the lead after sitting back in third behind the pacesetter ALWAYSMINING. LONG RANGE TODDY was in play as well. The pair passed ALWAYSMINING in the far turn and then MR. MONEY took the lead but finished behind the riderless ESKENFORIT. GRAY MAGICIAN finished second with MATH WIZARD coming in third.
MR. MONEY covered the 1 1/16 miles in 1:41.8 continuing his hot streak. While trainer Brett Calhoun says it's too early to make a decision, the Travers could be his next start.
$200,000 Indiana Oaks (G3)
KIM K was the favorite in the Indiana Oaks and set the pace, but STREET BAND took over in the far turn and posted a winning time of 1:43.01. SUNDAYSATTHEBEACH finished second with CHOCOLATE KISSES following in third.
STREET BAND's last start was the Kentucky Oaks where she finished sixth. Her next goal is the $600,000 Alabama Stakes at Saratoga and the $1 million Cotillion at Parx.
$150,000 Los Alamitos Derby (G3)
In a four horse field, GAME WINNER showed he is back and with the Travers in sight. KINGLY set the pace early with a half mile time of :49.25. PARSIMONY held second down the backstretch, but Joel Rosario moved GAME WINNER off the rail in the three path and battled it out with PARSIMONY around the turn towards home. GAME WINNER took the win home by five lengths leaving PARSIMONY in second and KINGLY in third.
Baffert confirmed that a start in the Travers is the plan and hopefully a “Win and You're in” trip to the Breeders' Cup.
THAIS made sure the pace was fast for the Brown stable, setting early fractions with MITCHELL ROAD of :22.10 and :45.90. Once the frontrunners tired, RUSHING FALL briefly held the lead until stablemate SISTERCHARLIE made a huge move to win by 1 3/4 lengths and taking her second Diana title in a row. HOMERIQUE also showed up by moving from the back of the pack, but didn't have time to get to the front. She finished third behind RUSHING FALL.
$750,000 Delaware Handicap (G2)
GOTHAM GALA set the pace followed by ESCAPE CLAUSE with a :48 half mile time. GOODONEHONEY followed close behind. Near the back of the backstretch, ELATE began making her way to the front and then cruised away from the field for the win in what appeared to be a hand gallop. ESCAPE CLAUSE finished second with BLUE PRIZE following just behind.
The win was ELATE's second straight Delaware Handicap victory and has five graded stakes wins. She last won the Fleur de Lis (G2) at Churchill Downs June 15th.