First Comment Fastest of All in Dash For Cash Derby Trials at Lone Star Park

(Friday, October 7, 2005) - J.W. Owens' First Comment, ridden by Rodrigo Vallejo and trained by Jeff Acuna, ran 440 yards Friday night in :21.546 and was the fastest of 25 three-year-old Quarter Horses that vied 10 spots in the Grade 1, $147,000 Dash For Cash Derby at Lone Star Park in Grand Prairie, Texas.

Three trial races were staged and the 10 fastest times earned a berth in the Oct. 21 final, which features a $58,960 first prize.

The finalists are First Comment (:21.546), Winners Award (:21.665), Mighty Invictus (:21.724), Tooting Otoole (:21.732), Real Easy Okey (:21.732); Strawfly Romance (:21.745), Miss Eye Candy (:21.792), Hez Habit Forming (:21.808), Six Packa Moonshine (:21.850) and Ro Anns Money (:21.935).

Previously, First Comment was runner-up to Si Puede in the Grade 2 Sam Houston Derby. It was the colt's eighth win in 19 career starts. Trainer "Sleepy" Gilbreath, a two-time Dash For Cash Derby winner with Showcase Six (1998) and champion Significant Speed (2000), is the trainer of Miss Eye Candy and Six Packa Moonshine - his record 13th and 14th qualifiers to the Derby final since 1997.

DOWN THE STRETCH - When Miss Blushing Barbi was disqualified from first to last in Friday's second race, 69-1 longshot First Down Pay was moved up to first and triggered the largest win payoff in Lone Star Park's Fall Meeting of Champions history. First Down Pay returned $141.20 for every $2 bet to win, besting Exotic Effort's previous mark of $136.40 on Oct. 10, 2003. The Lone Star Park record was set May 26, 2001 when the appropriately named Purse Stealer paid $231.40 during that year's Spring Thoroughbred Season...Nine races on Saturday's 13-race card at Lone Star Park are trial races for the $450,000-estimated Dash For Cash Futurity. The first live race is 5 p.m. CT.

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