The $200,000 Lecomte Stakes (G3) is the highlight event in the Fair Grounds' "Road of the Derby Kickoff Day" card on Saturday afternoon. It is a points-scoring race in the Road to the Kentucky Derby series used to determine Derby starting spots. A field of nine 3-year-olds faced the starter in this 1 mile 70 yard contest around two turns of the main track, Avie's Quality, winner of the Display Stakes last out at Woodbine, sent off as the 8-5 favorite over 4-1 Golden Soul, a maiden winner at the Fair Grounds at second asking, and 9-2 third choice Oxbow, a distant fourth in the CashCall Futurity (G1) at Hollywood Park after breaking his maiden at Churchill Downs.
Jockey Jon Court sent Oxbow to the lead first time past the stands and he set fractions of 24.44, 48.58, and 1:13.34 over the fast main track while pressed by 20-1 Heitai, in turn 3 lengths in front of 8-1 Malibu High in third. Entering the lane, Court asked Oxbow to open up and he did, getting a 3 length lead at the 1/8 pole through 1 mile in 1:39.16, and hand-ridden the rest of the way to an impressive 11 1/2 length romp over late-running Golden Soul in 1:43.30. It was another 1 1/2 lengths back to 6-1 Fear the Kitten third, while favorite Avie's Quality checked in 8th.