Dutrow's One-Two Punch Tops Indiana Derby

By James Platz

The Tony Dutrow-trained entry of Saratoga Games and Burning Roma is the 5-2 morning-line favorite for Saturday's $300,000 Indiana Derby at 1 1/16 miles at Hoosier Park. A full field of 12 will contest the ninth race on the program.

Saratoga Games enters the Indiana Derby off a second-place finish in the $500,000 West Virginia Derby at Mountaineer Race Track and Gaming Resort. Western Pride, winner of that Aug. 19 event, came back to win the grade II Ohio Derby at Thistledown Sept. 29.

Ridden by Mario Pino, the colt reeled off three consecutive wins prior to his last start. Entrymate Burning Roma notched three stakes wins before third-place finishes in the $1.5-million Haskell Invitational Handicap at Monmouth Park, and the $150,000 Jerome Handicap at Belmont Park. Rick Wilson will be in the irons.

Second choice for the seventh running of the Indiana Derby is trainer Richard Violette's Free Of Love. The Meadow Flight colt finished third in the $1-million Travers Stakes at Saratoga for owners Ralph Evans and Anthony Aprilante. He'll be ridden by Richard Migliore.

Rounding out the field will be Classic Par, with Lonnie Meche; Quadrophonic Sound, Jon Court; Trion Georgia, Calvin Borel; X Country, Jose Martinez Jr.; Kentucky Derby starter Keats, Larry Melancon; San Pedro, Ray Sibille; Gift Of The Eagle, Rene Douglas; Who Devil Who, Terry Thompson; and Orientate, Robby Albarado.