Perfect Drift Outlasts Easyfromthegitgo in Indy Derby

Stonecrest Farm's Perfect Drift, who was making his first start since the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) on June 8, took command at the head of the stretch and held off the fast-closing Easyfromthegitgo to win the eighth running of the $400,000 Indiana Derby (gr. III) by 3/4 of a length at Hoosier Park Saturday.

Trained by Louisville-based conditioner Murray Johnson and ridden to victory by Jon Court – Hoosier Park's all-time leading rider – Perfect Drift covered the 1 1/16-mile distance over a "fast" track in 1:43 2/5.

The homebred son of Dynaformer and the Naskra mare Nice Gal stalked the front-running tandem of Wiseman's Ferry and City Sharpster through much of the race before rallying at the head of the stretch.

He returned $9, $4.60 and $3.30 as the 3-1 second-choice in the wagering.

Easyfromthegitgo looked well beaten midway through the stretch but closed with authority inside the sixteenth-pole to finish second. He returned $5.40 and $3.60. Longshot Premeditation, also making a late-running move, paid $9.80 to show.

With the victory, Perfect Drift, who races in the name of Dr. William A. and Mary Reed's Stonecrest Farm, improved his career record to four wins from nine starts lifetime with three second-place efforts and a third to his credit.

(Chart, Equibase)