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The Florida Derby and The Louisiana Derby

Dateline: 03/10/00

D. Wayne Lukas will take center stage this weekend as he sends out favorites in both of these major Triple Crown preps with purses of $750,000 each. On Saturday he will have High Yield in the Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park which has been a stepping stone for many a successful Triple Crown participant. Then Sunday he will send out Exchange Rate in the Louisiana Derby at the Fair Grounds which will have its richest purse ever plus a $500,000 bonus should the winner also win the Kentucky Derby. Past performances for both races are available for free online from the Daily Racing Form here. Both races will also be televised:

High Yield
Florida Derby Saturday on ABC 5:30-6:00 p.m. EST
Louisiana Derby Sunday on ESPN2 4:30-5:30 p.m. EST and repeated at 9:30-10:30 p.m. PST

The Florida Derby

The Florida Derby has a field of 10 and includes several horses who are highly touted for the Kentucky Derby. Here is the field in post position order; distance is 1 1/8 miles (stakes record: 1:46 4/5) and all entrants carry 122 lbs.
PPHorseJockeyTrainerM/L Odds
1High YieldDayLukas8-5
2Scottish HaloChavezRizzo6-1
4Hal's HopeVelezRose6-1
5Elite MercedesBaileyWalden4-1
6Bare OutlineNakataniZito8-1
9Deputy WarlockSmithMcPeek20-1
10Tahkodha HillsCoaZiadie10-1

Pgm  Horse           Jockey            Win   Place  Show
 4   Hal's Hope      Roger I. Velez   15.80   5.20  3.60
 1   High Yield      Pat Day                  3.00  2.40
 10  Tahkodha Hills  Eibar Coa                      8.60

Winning Time:  1:51.49

Also ran: 8 - Settlement, 3 - Postponed, 2 - Scottish Halo, 
          9 - Deputy Warlock, 5 - Elite Mercedes, 
          6 - Bare Outline, 7 - Hades

$2 Exacta 4-1               34.20
$2 Trifecta 4-1-10         593.60 
$2 Superfecta 4-1-10-8  10,262.20
Hal's Hope gave his 88 year old breeder, owner, and trainer Harold Rose a thrilling victory in the Florida Derby. He was always on or near the lead and was challenged twice by heavy favorite High Yield, once from the inside and again from the outside, but held his ground to win by a neck. Both of them were well clear of the rest of the field.

Captain Steve
The Louisiana Derby The Louisiana Derby has a field of 10 and also includes several horses who are excellent prospects for the Kentucky Derby. Here is the field in post position order; distance is 1 1/16 miles and all entrants carry 122 lbs.
PPHorseJockeyTrainerM/L Odds
1Captain SteveAlbaradoBaffert2-1
2Oro NegraMartinezKeen30-1
4More Than ReadyVelazquezPletcher5-1
5Exchange RateNakataniLukas7-2
7Country OnlyCastilloKimmel8-1
10Mortal CinchLanerieStidham30-1

This should be a Lukas vs. Baffert grudge match between Exchange Rate and Captain Steve, but don't count out last year's speedy star More Than Ready. If you are not able to catch the race on ESPN2, you can watch online with Real Video and Audio. I will be at this one live so look for photos online after midnight Sunday when I get home.

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