57 Entered in Six Trials Friday to Determine Final Field for the $394,306 Grade 1, Texas Classic Derby

(Grand Prairie, Texas - Thursday, October 17, 2013) - Of the 10 races carded on Friday, October 18 at Lone Star Park, six of them, scheduled races four through nine, trials to determine the final field for the $394,306 Grade 1, Texas Classic Derby to be held here on Saturday, November 9. The trials are 440 yards and feature a total of 57 three-year-olds, each vying for a coveted spot in the Derby final. Of those, only 10 with the fastest times will advance to the final.

Among chief contenders to watch is Captain Strawfly in race five. The gelding by Captain Courage is coming off of back-to-back wins here at Lone Star Park. On September 20, he won his trial for the Grade 2, Dash for Cash Derby. Posting the fourth fastest time of the trials that night, he went on to win the final on October 5. The Anna Marie Crowson trainee is in top form currently. His rider for those wins, Esgar Ramirez will again have the mount.

In race six, Big Boi just missed in last years $1 Million Grade 1, Texas Classic Futurity finishing second by a head to Valiant Lil Lady. His 2013 campaign has been a winning one. He won his trial for the Oklahoma Derby at Remington Park and went on to win the final there last March. In May, he won his trial to and qualified for the Grade 2, Heritage Place Derby also at Remington Park. He finished third in the Derby final last June. Trained by Verle Bohner, the gelding by Oak Tree Special will be ridden by David Brown.

Ronnie James in race eight should be tough to beat. Champion jockey G. R. Carter, Jr. will ride the Valiant Hero gelding for trainer Greg Lofland. After a respectable fifth place finish in $1 Million Grade 1, Texas Classic Futurity here last year, Ronnie James is two for three so far this year. He won an optional claiming in May at Delta Downs. In June, he won his trial for Firecracker Derby, also at Delta Downs placing third in the final there in July. His career record is 10-7-1-1 with earnings of $249,364.

These are just a few of the outstanding three-year-old Quarter Horses competing in the trials Friday at Lone Star Park. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. First race post time is 6:35 p.m.

Additional Notes: Jockey Ricky Ramirez has the lead in the rider standings so far with 16 wins … Trey Wood is atop the trainer standings with 16 wins … and it is a 13-way tie with two wins each in the owner standings. These stats are as of Wednesday, October 16, 2013.

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