Del Mar, CA (SportsNetwork.com) – Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner
California Chrome has been made the overwhelming 4-5 favorite for Saturday’s
$300,000 Hollywood Derby versus five challengers in the 1 1/8-mile turf race.
Owned by Steve Coburn and Perry Martin, California Chrome will start his turf
debut from post 5 with Victor Espinoza again riding.
“I won the Derby from the No. 5 hole, so that’s a lucky number for me,”
trainer Art Sherman noted about the draw. “It looks to me like there’s speed
to the inside. I don’t think he’ll be far off the pace. If somebody wants the
lead, they can have it. They can’t be going too slow, though; this time he’ll
come away from there running.”
California Chrome, who has already won on dirt and synthetic tracks, will be
making his grass debut on Del Mar’s Jimmy Durante Turf Course.
“I’m excited to see him run on the grass, it’s a different scenario for me,”
Sherman said. “We should have a few Chromies (California Chrome fans) out here
In his most recent start, California Chrome finished third in the Breeders’
Cup Classic on Nov. 1 just a neck behind Bayern and runner-up Toast of New
York. That effort came after he was sixth to Bayern in the Pennsylvania Derby
at Parx Racing on Sept. 20, his first start after finishing fourth in the
California Chrome began 2014 by posting three straight wins at Santa Anita in
the California Cup Derby, San Felipe Stakes and Santa Anita Derby before
taking the first two legs of the Triple Crown.
California Chrome has banked $4,042,650 from 15 career starts with eight wins.
The 3-1 second pick is Queen’s Plate winner Lexie Lou. The 3-year-old filly,
owned by Gary Barber and trained by Mark Casse, will break from post 2 with
Corey Nakatani getting his second mount aboard the Canadian-bred.
Lexie Lou won the 1 1/4-mile Queen’s Plate by 1 1/2 lengths as the 3-1
second pick. The filly followed that by winning the Wonder Where Stakes at
Woodbine on Aug. 10. After finishing 10th in the Canadian Stakes on grass,
Lexie Lou won the Autumn Miss Stakes on Oct. 25.
The 3-year-old has banked $1,059,470 this year with four wins from seven
Here is the Hollywood Derby field from the rail out: Talco, Drayden Van Dyke,
10-1; Lexie Lou, Corey Nakatani, 3-1; Flamboyant, Mike Smith, 6-1; Sawyer’s
Hill, Rafael Bejarano, 5-1; California Chrome, Victor Espinoza, 4-5 and
Cabral, Kent Desormeaux, 15-1
All starters will carry 122 pounds with the exception of the filly Lexie Lou
who gets in at 119.
The Hollywood Derby has an approximate post time of 7 p.m. ET.