This Saturday’s horse racing card is filled with a number of major graded stakes, but one of the most intriguing showdowns on the board is this year’s $500,000 Indiana Derby at Indiana Grand. Three-year old thoroughbreds who first made a name for themselves in the Kentucky Derby prep race season should fill the field for Saturday’s main event.
The 2017 Triple Crown racing season came to an end last month; however, there is still some great betting action for 3-year old thoroughbreds all summer long including, this Saturday's Indiana Derby. The actual field for this race is still coming together, but it looks like it will contain some seasoned veterans from a few of those Triple Crown events. The following are the three horses that I would put together in a trifecta play.
2017 Indiana Derby
The Indiana Derby is a Grade 2 stakes race for 3-year-old thoroughbreds that is contested each year on the dirt track at Indiana Grand over a distance of 1 1/16 miles. The total prize purse for this year’s event has been set at $500,000.
I went with Untrapped as my top pick in last month’s Grade 3 Ohio Derby, and he faded to third down the stretch over the 1 1/8 miles of dirt at Thistledown. I still think he is the class of the field for Saturday’s race, especially at the shorter 1 1/16-mile distance. Trained by Steve Asmussen, this Kentucky-bred colt is still trying to reach his potential as a 3-year-old in search of his first major stakes race victory. He came close early in the year with a second-place finish in the Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds at 1 1/16 miles as part of his qualifying run for this year’s Kentucky Derby. The best he could do at Churchill on May 6 was 12th in a field of 20.
The son of Trappe Shot should come into this race with the highest Horse Racing Nation rank in the field at No. 183, and his HRN rating stands at 7.31.
You can expect to see trainer Doug O’Neill’s Irap open as the morning line favorite for the Indiana Derby after winning the Ohio Derby in 1:50.48 over Girvin. This is another Kentucky-bred colt who ran in the Kentucky Derby only to finish 18th in a crowd. Going back to his second-place run in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity as a juvenile, he has been able to finish in the money in five of the eight events he has run. Sired by Tiznow, the biggest victory of his career came in the Grade 2 Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in early April over a distance of 1 1/8 miles.
Irap may not have the added distance he needs to hold off Untrapped this Saturday afternoon, but it should be a hard-fought battle to the finish between the top two colts in the field. His HRN rank stands at No. 355 with a slightly higher rating of 7.58.
My third choice to round out a trifecta pick for this year’s Indiana Derby would be Hollywood Handsome. The last time we saw this Kentucky-bred colt in action he was bringing up the rear in the Belmont Stakes with a disappointing 11th-place finish. Trained by Dallas Stewart, look for jockey Florent Geroux to once again get the ride in this race.
This pedigree of Tapizar has already showed some promise at 1 1/16 miles with a victory at Churchill in an Allowance race on May 14, and he did place fourth in the Grade 2 Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds on April 1.Talk Horse Racing Betting In Our Forum