Winner of the Virginia Derby (gr. IIT) in his last start, Gio Ponti switches coasts for New York-based trainer Christophe Clement and takes a shot at the best the California 3-year-old turf division has to offer in the $350,000 Del Mar Derby (gr. IIT) Aug. 31.
With heavy rain in the forecast this weekend, a dozen 3-year-old prospects were entered for the $150,000 California Derby at Golden Gate Fields Jan. 27.
Massive Drama, who ran third in the CashCall Futurity (gr. I) at Hollywood Park last month, holds the edge in experience against six up-and-coming rivals entered in the $150,000 San Rafael Stakes (gr. III), which kicks off the 2008 3-year-old season at Santa Anita Jan. 12.
Odds-on favorite The Leopard got the firm going he wanted, and responded with an overpowering win in the $111,800 Generous Stakes (gr. IIIT) at Hollywood Park Nov. 24. With the victory, winning trainer Todd Pletcher broke the single-season record for purse earnings he set last year.
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