Owned by breeder J. Paul Reddam’s Reddam Racing LLC and trained by Doug O’Neill, Slow Down Andy will try to accomplish something Saturday at Los Alamitos no other horse has.
The upset winner of the Grade II Los Alamitos Futurity during the 2021 Winter meet, the Nyquist colt out of the Square Eddie mare Edwina E will try to become the first thoroughbred to capture both the Futurity and the Los Alamitos Derby.
Scheduled for 1 1/8 miles, the $125,000-guaranteed Derby, which will be run for the ninth time Saturday, attracted four other 3-year-olds. It will be run as the last of nine races on the next-to-last day of the Los Angeles County Fair meet. Post time is 2 p.m. and scheduled post time for the Derby is 5:58 p.m.
In two races since defeating heavily-favored Messier in the Los Alamitos Futurity, Slow Down Andy finished sixth in the Grade II Risen Star at the Fair Grounds, then won the Grade III Sunland Derby in New Mexico as the 6-5 favorite March 27.
The chestnut has six listed drills at Santa Anita prepping for his return and is proven fresh. An earner of $544,850 in five starts, Slow Down Andy won by nearly five lengths in his career debut last Oct. 9.
Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert, recently returned from suspension and a winner of the Los Alamitos Derby six times since daytime thoroughbred racing returned here in 2014, will be represented by Doppelganger and High Connection.
A son of Into Mischief and the Quiet American mare Twice the Lady owned by a large partnership that includes SF Racing LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables LLC and Golconda Stable, Doppelganger has one win in six starts and earnings of $202,700.
His lone victory came in his career bow during the 2021 Winter meet last Dec. 11. Most recently, he was third at 7-5 in the Grade III Affirmed June 11.
Runner-up in the Affirmed, High Connection is 1-for-3 for HRH Prince Sultan Bin Mishal al Saud. The Connect colt out of the Forest Camp mare Forest Legend has banked $74,000.
O’Neill will also send out Win the Day, a Midshipman gelding owned by Boat Racing LLC, Fritz Brothers Racing and William Strauss. Out of the Jazil mare Sunrise Bay, Win the Day has one win in five starts and earnings of $86,268. In his last outing, the $82,000 2-year-old purchase split the field in the Texas Derby May 30 at Lone Star Park.
Trainer John Sadler, who won the 2016 Derby with Accelerate, will be represented by Got Thunder, who trailed in the Texas Derby after he broke his maiden six weeks prior at Santa Anita.
Owned by Talia Racing LLC and West Point Thoroughbreds, the Arrogate colt out of the Silver Deputy mare Ask the Question is 1-for-6 with a bankroll of $80,760.
From inside out, the field for the Los Alamitos Derby: Win the Day, Diego Herrera rides, 122 pounds; Got Thunder, Ramon Vazquez, 122; Slow Down Andy, Mario Gutierrez, 122; Doppelganger, Abel Cedillo, 122 and High Connection, Juan Hernandez, 122.