BACKTALK (Smarty Jones), one of the early-season juvenile leaders last year when scoring back-to-back wins in the Bashford Manor S. (G3) and Sanford S. (G2), will make his seasonal debut in Friday's $75,000 Sportsman's Paradise S. at Delta Downs. The Triple Crown nominated colt, trained by Tom Amoss, enters off two unplaced efforts in the Hopeful S. (G1), where he rallied for fourth, and the Breeders' Futurity (G1), where he was a subpar eighth in his Polytrack and two-turn debut. Backtalk returns to the dirt in the one-mile Sportsman's Paradise and has been made the 6-5 morning-line favorite under Miguel Mena. ROYAL EXPRESS (Royal Academy) and VITO FILITTO (Mutakddim), the one-two finishers in the February 6 Black Gold S. at Fair Grounds, are the main challengers from a class perspective while PERFECT LOU (Perfect Soul [Ire]) has a pair of two-turn, seven-furlong allowance wins at Delta to his credit.