Eleven sophomores will travel 1 1/8 miles at Gulfstream Park in Saturday’s $1 million Florida Derby (G1) . The Road to the Kentucky Derby series event offers 100 points to the victor, with the top pair more than likely to qualify for the Run for the Roses on May 4 at Churchill Downs.
Here is the talented field:
Hidden Scroll Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $50,600
Top BRIS Speed rating (102) in maiden victory
Owner: Juddmonte Farms
Breeder: Juddmonte Farms (KY)
Trainer: Bill Mott
Jockey: Javier Castellano
Sire: Hard Spun
Dam: Sheba Queen
The morning-line choice set wicked fractions before tiring late in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (G2) most recently. The Kentucky-bred draws well inside and will be the one to catch and beat with a clean break in this spot. Javier Castellano inherits the mount.
Current Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $222,850
Top BRIS Speed rating (90) for third in Dania Beach Stakes
Owner: Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners and Robert V. Lapenta
Breeder: Hinkle Farms (KY)
Trainer: Todd Pletcher
Jockey: Manuel Franco
This proven turf performer was third in his seasonal debut, the Dania Beach Stakes, and will attempt to transfer his ability to the main surface here. The $725,000 yearling purchase comes in with a bullet drill in advance of this test. The colt could be a late exotics contender with a step forward.
Harvey Wallbanger Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $299,520
Top BRIS Speed rating (95) in Holy Bull Stakes (G2) score
Owner: Harold Lerner LLC, AWC Stables, Nehoc Stables, Scott
K. Akman and Paul Braverman
Breeder: Tony Holmes and Dr. & Mrs. Walter Zent (KY)
Trainer: Ken McPeek
Jockey: Brian Hernandez Jr.
The Kentucky-bred has been first or second in each of his five assignments to date. The Holy Bull Stakes (G2) hero smoked a half-mile bullet most recently on this oval and will be rallying from well off the early tempo.
Bourbon War Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $155,100
Top BRIS Speed rating (96) for fourth in Remsen Stakes (G2) and allowance win
Owner: Bourbon Lane Stable and Lake Star Stable
Breeder: Conquest Stables LLC (KY)
Trainer: Mark Hennig
Jockey: Irad Ortiz Jr.
Dam: My Conquestadory
This well-bred son of Tapit put in a fine rally to be runner-up in the Fountain of Youth (G2) last out. The talented three-year-old should relish the added distance in this spot and rates as a major player once again.
Everfast Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $113,885
Top BRIS Speed rating (94) in Holy Bull Stakes (G2) second
Owner: Calumet Farm
Breeder: Extern Developments (KY)
Trainer: Dale Romans
Jockey: Chris Landeros
Sire: Take Charge Indy
Dam: Awesome Surprise
The Holy Bull Stakes (G2) runner-up never fired in the Fountain of Youth and will look to rebound in this major test. The inconsistent Kentucky-bred will need a lifetime best to challenge the top runners in this field.
Hard Belle Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $43,360
Top BRIS Speed rating (79) for fourth and fifth-placings in allowance/optional claimers
Owner: Thoroughbred Champions Training Center
Breeder: Charles Fipke (KY)
Trainer: Jamie Mejia
Jockey: Jose Batista
Sire: Hard Spun
Dam: Bourbon Belle
Color: Dark Bay
The dark bay colt has not hit the board in five straight races and would be an impossible winner of this event. He could be an early pace presence but has little chance to be in the race turning for home.
Maximum Security Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $66,600
Top BRIS Speed rating (100) in allowance/optional claiming victory
Owner: Gary and Mary West
Breeder: Gary and Mary West Stables Inc. (KY)
Trainer: Jason Servis
Jockey: Luis Saez
Sire: New Year’s Day
Dam: Lil Indy
A wildcard in the cast, he has been untested following a trio of dominant triumphs against lesser at this venue. The former maiden claimer could be any kind in his first serious class test. The homebred will be forwardly placed from the start.
Bodexpress Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $20,700
Top BRIS Speed rating (97) for second in maiden
Owner: Top Racing LLC and Global Thoroughbreds LLC
Breeder: Martha Jane Mulholland (KY)
Trainer: Gustavo Delgado
Jockey: Nik Juarez
Dam: Pied a Terre
This longshot comes off his best run to date when a neck second in a maiden special weight race here. The Kentucky-bred has ability, though he picks an awfully ambitious spot to garner his first career victory.
Code of Honor Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $384,820
Top BRIS Speed rating (95) in Champagne Stakes (G1) second and Fountain of Youth (G2) win
Owner: W. S. Farish
Breeder: W. S. Farish (KY)
Trainer: Shug McGaughey
Jockey: John Velazquez
Sire: Noble Mission
The Fountain of Youth (G2) winner has a strong turn of foot and could surely move forward in his third assignment of 2019. The Kentucky-bred colt shows two bullet drills following his biggest win to date, and he will be a force with any kind of forward move on Saturday.
Union’s Destiny Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $43,750
Top BRIS Speed rating (99) for third in Smooth Air Stakes
Owner: Los Samanes LLC
Breeder: CESA Farm (KY)
Trainer: Juan Avila
Jockey: Leonel Reyes
Sire: Union Rags
Dam: Ms Anna Destiny
This sneaky exotics contender had little chance in the Fountain of Youth (G2) after going seven wide in the early going. This colt ran a big one two back in the Smooth Air Stakes and he should be of great value in his second run this season.
Garter and Tie Career Racing Stats
Total Career Earnings: $286,970
Top BRIS Speed rating (103) in Smooth Air Stakes triumph
Owner: Jacks or Better Farm Inc.
Breeder: Jacks or Better Farm Inc. (FL)
Trainer: Ralph Nicks
Jockey: Jeffrey Sanchez
Sire: Brooks ‘n Down
Dam: Garter Belt
Color: Dark Bay
This Florida-bred ran evenly in the Holy Bull (G2) most recently and will run with blinkers off for the initial time in here. The multiple stakes hero draws widest in the field. However, he owns the top BRIS Speed numbers among the cast (103 and 102) and can’t be ignored at a nice price.