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Kentucky Derby Contenders
Lawyer Ron winning the Southwest Stakes
When the gate opened, jockey John McKee gently urged the favorite to the lead then sat chilly for the backstretch run, setting very easy fractions of 23.29, 48.02, and 1:27.13 while loose on the lead by as many as 2 1/2 lengths. 14-1 shot Mark of Success tracked him until the top of the stretch. With 1/4 mile left to run, 6-1 third choice Steppenwolfer swung out 4 wide around the turn after settling near the back of the pack early, and closed well through the lane. However, with the easy pace, Lawyer Ron had plenty left in the tank to hold off this late challenge by 3/4 length at the line in a very slow time of 1:40.00 over the fast track. It was 3 1/4 lengths back to 32-1 longshot Red Raymond in third, while 5-1 second choice Music School was fourth.
Winning trainer Bob Holthus said, "We wanted to get away from the field if we possibly could and pick the part of the racetrack we wanted to be in."
Urban Guy winning the Mountain Valley Stakes
Winning trainer Tim Ritchey said, "He ran very well. Robby (jockey Albarado) rode him perfect. We had discussed letting him sit back off the pace."
The following afternoon, the Triple Crown Trail moved west to Sunland Park in New Mexico for the $100,000 Borderland Derby. 9-1 shot Indy Wildcat stalked the pace of 5-1 Disappearing Trick then overtook that rival and held off the late-running 17-1 shot Wait In Line to prevail by just a head in a time of 1:44.82 for the 1 1/16 mile main track event. 6-5 favorite Doctor Decherd failed to fire, finishing a disappointing eighth.
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