Monday, July 29, 2013
WV Derby field taking shape
Claiborne Farm and Adele Dilschneider's Departing and Repole Stable's Overanalyze are among the expected starters for the $750,000 West Virginia Derby at Mountaineer Casino, Racetrack & Resort Aug. 3.
The field for the 1 ⅛-mile test for 3-year-olds will be drawn July 30.
In his last start May 18, Departing finished sixth in the Preakness Stakes. Before that, the 3-year-old gelding by War Front won the Illinois Derby.
"In the old days, they didn't offer pots that were worth three-quarters of a million dollars," said Al Stall Jr., who trains Departing. "There was a sense of [financial] urgency to run a horse. A trainer has more of an opportunity nowadays to let a young horse develop.
"Departing is a gelding, so we plan to keep him competing for quite a few years."
Overanalyze, winner of the grade I Arkansas Derby in April, is one of two potential starters for trainer Todd Pletcher, according to Mountaineer officials. The other is Forever Thing, who finished second in the Long Branch Stakes at Monmouth Park in his last start.
Overanalyze, by Dixie Union, is seeking to rebound from off-the-board finishes in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands and the Belmont Stakes.
The West Virginia Derby is the richest of nine stakes scheduled for the Saturday program Mountaineer. First post time is 2 p.m. EDT.