Asmussen lines up Oklahoma Derby 2018 contingent

Photo: Coady Photography

National Racing Hall of Famer and 13-time title-winning trainer at Remington Park,
Steve Asmussen, has four colts on the grounds here that may go in the Grade 3 $400,000 Oklahoma Derby on Sunday, Sept. 30. If that is not enough, he may make it five when entries are taken.


Combatant, Limation, Lionite and
Retirement Fund are all stabled in barn A-6 in the Remington Park stable area.
Title Ready could be on his way.


Combatant ran second in the $400,000 Springboard Mile last year at Remington Park as a 2-year-old before hitting the Kentucky Derby trail in Arkansas. He finished second in the Grade 3, $500,000
Southwest Stakes and $150,000 Smarty Jones before running third and fourth, respectively, in the Grade 2, $900,000 Rebel and Grade 1 $1 million Arkansas Derby, all at Oaklawn Park.


Asmussen is a two-time winner of the Eclipse Award for top trainer of the year nationally (2008, 2009) and he was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2016. His horses have won the Breeders’ Cup Classic,
Preakness Stakes, Belmont Stakes, Dubai World Cup, Kentucky Oaks and Breeders’ Cup Distaff.


Limation is here off a nearly six-lengths victory in the Grade 3, $300,000 Super Derby at Louisiana Downs. Lionite just ran fourth in the Super Derby, but did beat Limation in a maiden race at Oaklawn
this spring. Both colts have had official works at Remington – Limation (Sept. 18, 5 furlongs, 1:00.22, handily) and Lionite (Sept. 17, 5 furlongs, 1:01.15, handily).


Retirement Fund won the first two starts of his career at Fair Grounds in New Orleans, but hasn’t had much luck against stakes-company. Still, he has had two bullet workouts over the Remington Park
track, one Saturday, Sept. 22, traveling five panels in 1:00.61 breezing in the fastest of five who tried the distance over a track rated good. He also put up the bullet on Aug. 28, covering five furlongs in :59.4, handily, the fastest of 12 that day. If Title
Ready comes, he has run third in the Grade 3 $500,000 Indiana Derby at Indiana Grand and fourth in the Grade 3, $500,000 Ohio Derby at Thistledown.


Lone Sailor, out of trainer
Tom Amoss’ barn and a likely starter for the Oklahoma Derby, had a strong half-mile move in an official workout this morning at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Ky. He covered the four furlongs in :48.40 seconds. His time was the fifth fastest of the day
at that distance. Lone Sailor was a near winner in the Grade 2, $1 million Louisiana Derby this spring at Fair Grounds, losing by only a neck to Noble Indy.


Lone Sailor raced in the Grade 1, $2 million Kentucky Derby (8th) and was beaten only two lengths in the Grade 1, $1.5 million Preakness to Triple Crown winner Justify. Since the Triple
Crown races, Lone Sailor has finished second in the Ohio Derby and Super Derby.

Two horses that originally were thought to be headed to the Oklahoma Derby are now not expected to make the trip – trainer
Peter Eurton’s Draft Pick and trainer Jeff Mullins’ Tatters to Riches, both West Coast-based horses.

Remington Park, which normally races Wednesday-Saturday during the thoroughbred meet, adds an extra day next week – Sunday – with the special Oklahoma Derby Day scheduled for a 3 p.m. first post.
Oklahoma Derby Day includes the top 3-year-old race of the meet, a Grade 3 event with a $400,000 purse; the Grade 3, $200,000 Remington Park Oaks for 3-year-old fillies; the $175,000 Governor’s Cup Handicap; $150,000 David Vance Stakes; $75,000 Kip Deville
Stakes; $75,000 Ricks Memorial Stakes; $70,000 Bob Barry Memorial; $70,000 Red Earth Stakes; $50,000 Flashy Lady Stakes, and $50,000 E.L. Gaylord Memorial Stakes. The card that day will feature 12 races with total purses of more than $1.3 million.


The following week there will be no racing on Wednesday, Oct. 3. The schedule that week will be Thursday-Saturday.


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