Sir Shackleton Tops Indiana Derby Field

By James Platz
Nick Zito-trained Sir Shackleton has been tabbed as the 5-2 morning line favorite for the $500,000-added Indiana Derby (gr. II) Saturday at Hoosier Park. The Miswaki colt will be joined by eight other 3-year-olds in the 1 1/16-mile event.

Bred and owned by Tracy Farmer, Sir Shackleton will start from the second post for regular rider Rafael Bejarano. The favorite comes off a fifth-place finish in the $1 million Travers Stakes (gr. I), and has a win in the West Virginia Derby (gr. III) as well as a sixth-place finish in the Preakness Stakes (gr. I).

Starting along the rail is second-choice Pollard's Vision, who is 7-2 in the morning line for trainer Todd Pletcher. Owned by Edgewood Farm, Pollard's Vision possesses the highest earnings of the group with $872,020 this season.

Brass Hat, third-choice in the race at 4-1, will line up in post position eight for rider Willie Martinez. The gelded son of Prized won the Ohio Derby (gr. II) in his last start for trainer William Bradley.

Jay Em Ess Stable's Suave is the fourth-choice at 5-1 odds. Sixth in the Travers Stakes for trainer Paul McGee, the A.P. Indy colt drew the seven post position.

Trainer Doug O'Neill and rider Jon Court will once again team up in an attempt to defend their 2003 Indiana Derby win with Excessivepleasure. This year O'Neill will send out El Cajon winner Perfect Moon, at 10-1 odds, from the fourth post.

Local favorite Edgerrin (20-1) drew the outside post for owners Herb and Darlene Likens.

Below is the field, including post positions, odds, and rider assignments. The Indiana Derby is slated to go off at 9:50 p.m. CST.

PP -- Horse, Jockey, M-L Odds
1--Pollard's Vision, John Velazquez, 7-2
2--Sir Shackleton, Rafael Bejarano, 5-2
3--Hasslefree, John McKee, 12-1
4--Perfect Moon, Jon Court, 10-1
5--Quintons Gold Rush, Shane Sellers, 20-1
6--Avid Skier, Jose Delgado, 20-1
7--Suave, Brian Peck, 5-1
8--Brass Hat, Willie Martinez, 4-1
9--Edgerrin, Tommy Pompell, 20-1