Two of the favorites to win next month’s Kentucky Derby surged ahead of the field at the Santa Ana Derby at Santa Anita Park on April 7, with Justify holding off a late charge from Bolt d’Oro to win the 1 1/8-mile, $1 million stakes race.
Bolt d’Oro is owned and trained by Columbia Falls developer Mick Ruis and first rose to national prominence last fall when he dominated the FrontRunner Stakes, also at Santa Anita Park. He went on to finish third at the Breeders Cup Juvenile in November.
In last week’s Santa Ana Derby, Justify surged clear of the pack quickly and never relinquished the lead, although Bolt d’Oro closed to within a single length down the stretch. Third-place finisher Core Beliefs was a distant 6 1/2 lengths behind the two frontrunners.
The 1 1/4-mile Kentucky Derby will be run Saturday, May 5 at Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky. As of April 9, Bolt d’Oro was listed as the second-favorite to win the Derby at 3-1, according to odds posted at www.sportsbook.ag. Justify (9-4) is the favorite.