Hall of Fame trainers Bob Baffert and Jerry Hollendorfer have five of the 16 nominees to the $ 200,000 Los Alamitos Derby.
A Grade III for 3-year-olds at 1 1/8 miles, the Derby, which was formerly known as the Swaps Stakes when offered at Hollywood Park (1974-2013), will be run Saturday, July 15.
Baffert, who won the Los Alamitos Derby with Gimme Da Lute in 2015, nominated American Anthem, who comes off an impressive victory in the Grade II Woody Stephens on the Belmont Stakes undercard June 10, and West Coast, an easy winner of the Easy Goer on the same program in New York.
Although American Anthem is considered an unlikely participant, West Coast is expected to run Saturday. Owned by Gary and Mary West, the son of Flatter and the Honour and Glory mare Caressing has won three of five and earned $ 203,800.
Hollendorfer, who won the inaugural Los Alamitos Derby with Shared Belief in 2014, nominated Battle of Midway, who is expected to make his next start in the $ 1 million Haskell Invitational July 30 at Monmouth Park, and probable starters Colonist and Grecian Fire.
A Pioneerof the Nile colt owned by Stonestreet Stables LLC, Colonist is 2-for-4 with earnings of $ 73,460 while Grecian Fire, an Unusual Heat gelding, has won twice in seven races and banked $ 92,641 for owner-breeder KMN Racing LLC.
Trainer Doug O’Neill nominated Ann Arbor Eddie, B Squared, Milton Freewater, Pavel and Term of Art and could have multiple starters in the Derby.
The other nominees include Cistron, Gato Del Oro, Kimbear, Klimt, Sharp Samurai and Sorry Erik.
Owned by Kaleem Shah, Klimt is expected to make his first start for trainer Art Sherman in the Los Alamitos Derby.
Idle since finishing eighth of 11 in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile last Nov. 5 when trained by Baffert, Klimt, a son of Quality Road and the Dixie Union mare Inventive, was a two-time stakes winner as a 2-year-old, taking both the Grade II Best Pal and Grade I Del Mar Futurity last summer.
A son of The Factor and the Officer mare Major Allie, Cistron is owned by Hronis Racing LLC and Little Red Feather Racing and trained by John Sadler. Hronis Racing and Sadler teamed to win the 2016 Derby with Accelerate. Cistron has three wins in nine outings and has earned $ 251,179.
Entries for the Los Alamitos Derby will be taken Wednesday, July 12.
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