ROWDY YATES WILL TRY TO BECOME THIRD OKLAHOMA-BRED TO WIN HOMETOWN OKLAHOMA DERBY SUNDAY
Clever Trevor won the Oklahoma Derby back when it was called the Remington Park Derby in 1989, the first year of the race, becoming the first Oklahoma-bred to enjoy that trophy.
It would take 26 more years before another Oklahoma-bred horse joined him in that winner’s circle history – Shotgun Kowboy in 2015.
Now, Rowdy Yates will try to become only the third Oklahoma-bred to win the Oklahoma Derby and is the second highest earner in the field for the Grade 3, $200,000 Oklahoma Derby when it is run Sunday as the 10th race on a card that begins at 3 p.m. The Oklahoma Derby is one of eight stakes races carded on the 11-race program. The derby is scheduled for 7:12 p.m. All times are Central.
With $346,556 in his bankroll, and listed as the third choice in the morning line at 4-1 odds, Rowdy Yates will carry the colors of L and N Racing of Tulsa, Okla.. He will be the hometown favorite, having won two stakes races over the Remington Park track as a 2-year-old in 2019. L and N Racing has campaigned such horses as Lookin at Lee, who ran second to Always Dreaming in the 2015 Kentucky Derby, and Echo Town this year, who won the Grade 1, H. Allen Jerkens Sprint Stakes at Saratoga.
This colt by Morning Line, out of the Yes It’s True mare Spring Station, has won 5-of-11 starts lifetime, four of those in stakes races.
Rowdy Yates is trained by National Racing Hall of Famer and the current leading conditioner in the nation by money earned, Steve Asmussen. His horses have earned more than $15 million this year.
Here’s a closer look at the Oklahoma Derby’s history:
· Brad Cox will try to become the first trainer in the history of this race to win the Oklahoma Derby in back-to-back years. He won last year with Owendale. This year he has the 5-2 morning-line favorite Shared Sense competing. This Kentucky-bred colt by Street Sense, out of the Bernardini mare Collective, won the Grade 3, $300,000 Indiana Derby at Indiana Grand on July 8 as the 5-2 favorite there. Jockey Richard Eramia will ride.
· A Cox win also would put him in company with trainers who have won this race at least twice. There are some who have won it multiple times but not in successive years, such as Donnie Von Hemel with Clever Trevor (1989), Queen’s Gray Bee (1991) and Going Ballistic (2007); and Wesley Ward with Pleasant Prince (2010) and Politicallycorrect (2012).
· Jockey Luis Quinonez will be the only rider in this year’s Oklahoma Derby with a chance to win this race multiple times and would set a record for most years between wins. He rode Wally’s Choice to victory in 2004. Sixteen years later he can win aboard Avant Garde at 6-1 odds in the morning line. All this gelded Kentucky-bred son of Tonalist, out of the Afleet Alex mare Dancing Afleet, has done is win his last four races in a row at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale, Fla., but all four victories have come in lesser company than he would face in a stakes race. Oklahoma Horse Racing Hall of Famer Cliff Berry and the late great Garrett Gomez each had three wins in the Oklahoma Derby. Berry won aboard Comic Truth (2003), Mr. Pursuit (2006) and Shotgun Kowboy (2015). The nine years between his last two wins is currently the longest time between Oklahoma Derby wins by a jockey. Gomez won with Marked Tree (1993), Dazzling Falls (1995) and Top Hit (2001). The only other jockeys with more than one win are Tim Doocy and Shane Sellers with two each. The other eight riders, other than Quinonez, are looking for their first win in the Oklahoma Derby.
· This will be the 14th start for Quinonez if his horse breaks from the gate. That would move him to within four of Berry’s 18, most jockey starts all time.
· All owners in this year’s edition would be first-time winners of the Oklahoma Derby. The only owner(s) with more than one win in this race are Kenneth & Sarah Ramsey, who won with Pleasant Prince (2010) and Politicallycorrect (2012), both of those with trainer Ward.
· Largest winning margin in the Oklahoma Derby was 10 lengths by Comic Truth (2003).
· Smallest winning margin was by Lone Sailor (2018) by a nose.
· Stakes record for the 1-1/8th miles was by Classic Cat (1998) in 1 minute, 48 seconds flat.
· Thomas Amoss would become only the third trainer to win the Oklahoma Derby one year, not win the next year, and come back to win again the following year if Dean Martini (7-2) wins. Ward did it in 2010 and 2012. Von Hemel did it in 1989 and 1991.
· If Rowdy Yates and Code Runner break from the gate, Asmussen would increase his starts to 30 all-time in this race, which would be nine more than Von Hemel in second place with 21 starters.
· Highest win payout by a winner was Wally’s Choice ($69.80 in 2004).
· Winning horses by color – 15 bays, seven chestnuts, six dark bay/browns, and three grays.
· Most winners by post positions – #5 (eight winners), #1 (seven winners), #7 (five winners), #4 (two winners), #6 (two winners), #9 (two winners), #10 (two winners), #2 (one winner), #3 (one winner), #8 (one winner).
· A total of 10 post-time favorites have won the Oklahoma Derby in 31 tries. They were Wicked Destiny (9-5 in 1990), Vying Victor (5-2 in 1992), Marked Tree (2-1 in 1993), Wild Rush (2-5 in 1997), Classic Cat (1-5 in 1998), Performing Magic (4-5 in 2000), Top Hit (6-5 in 2001), Going Ballistic (Even in 2007), Pleasant Prince (2-1 in 2010) and Shotgun Kowboy, the last favorite to win (5-2 in 2015).
· Kentucky-breds have won 16 runnings of the Oklahoma Derby, followed by four Florida-breds, two Oklahoma-breds, two Virginia-breds, one New York-bred, one Minnesota-bred, one Pennsylvania-bred, one Arkansas-bred, one Nebraska-bred, one Illinois-bred and one Texas-bred.
Tracked by more than 164,000 fans on Facebook and 10,500 Twitter followers, Remington Park has provided more than $248 Million to the State of Oklahoma general education fund since the opening of the casino in 2005. Located at the junction of Interstates 35 & 44, in the heart of the Oklahoma City Adventure District, Remington Park is open daily for casino gaming and simulcast horse racing. The 2020 Thoroughbred Season continues through Dec. 20. Visit remingtonpark.com for more information.