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Sunday, April 02, 2006

Wanna Run in the Plate?

(Courtesy Bloodstock Research)

Michael Pegram's WANNA RUNNER (El Corredor) fulfilled bettors' expectations on Saturday as the sophomore gelding dominated his opponents as the 4-5 favorite in the $600,000 WinStar Derby at Sunland Park.
Sky Diving (Aptitude) broke to the early lead, traveling a quarter-mile in :22 3/5, but soon gave that position up as Blaze It (What a Spell) took over, covering four furlongs in :45 3/5 and three-quarters in 1:10 before yielding to the eventual winner at the top of the stretch. Wanna Runner drew off to a 4 3/4-length score and completed 1 1/8 miles over the fast track in 1:48 4/5 under Victor Espinoza.
The Bob Baffert trainee gave back $3.80, $3 and $2.20, while Sky Diving returned $5.20 and $3.80 for the place at 6-1. Belligerence (Robyn Dancer), who was coupled with Wait in Line (Line in the Sand), advanced three wide around the final turn and advanced willingly to get up for third, paying $2.80 at nearly 6-1. Exotics returned $10.60 ($1 exacta), $74.20 ($2 trifecta) and $153.40 for the 5-2-1-3, $2 superfecta.
Wait in Line, Keagan (Basket Weave), Might Be Hooked (Mighty), Blaze It, Doctor Decherd (Louis Quatorze) and Welfare Cadillac (Successful Appeal) rounded out the order of finish.
Wanna Runner finished a solid third to Brother Derek (Benchmark) in the San Rafael S. (G2) to begin his three-year-old season and entered Saturday's race off a fifth in the El Camino Real Derby (G3) at Bay Meadows. This victory improves his record to 7-3-0-1 and added $300,000 to his bankroll here, which now totals $381,950.
Bred in Ontario by Yvonne Schwabe, Wanna Runner is out of the winning Shebandowana (Mt. Magazine), whose latest foals include an unnamed yearling filly by Kafwain and a 2006 filly by Chapel Royal. Wanna Runner was purchased for $80,000 at the 2004 Fasig-Tipton Kentucky July Yearling Sale.
(Wanna Runner was listed as the second favourite in the Queen's Plate Winterbook, released last week)


  • At 5:30 PM, Blogger Neil said…

    From Sunday's El Paso Times (betcha the Queen'sPlate winterbook doesn't often make the El paso Times):

    Talk after each WinStar inevitably turns to the possibility of running in the Kentucky Derby, one of sport's grandest spectacles the first Saturday in May each year.

    "It's up to Bobby," Pegram said of what appears to be a very slim possibility of running at Churchill Downs in five weeks. "There's a whole lot of horse racing between now and then.

    "Going to the Derby and finishing fifth or sixth doesn't float my boat. There's still the Santa Anita Derby, the Arkansas Derby, the Blue Grass (Stakes)."

    Baffert claimed with a goofy smile after the race that he had "Derby" fever. But a more realistic possibility than the Kentucky Derby for the Canadian-bred Wanna Runner might be the Triple Crown north of the border.

    The $1 million Queen's Plate, the first jewel of the Canadian Triple Crown and that country's equivalent of the Kentucky Derby, will be run June 25 at Woodbine in Toronto. In fact, of 191 horses nominated for the Queen's Plate, Wanna Runner is the second-favorite in the Winterbook odds at 6-1, trailing only Unification (4-1).


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