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Acorn tries to rebound in Adequan Derby


November 19, 2010     E-mail this page to a friend!

Sam Houston Derby winner Acorn tries to return to his winning ways after a second-place run as the favorite in the Dash For Cash Derby (G2) when he faces Diamond For Jess in the $200,000 Adequan Derby Challenge (G1) at Fair Grounds in New Orleans. Approximate post time for the 400-yard final is 9:20 p.m. Central Time. The Adequan Derby Challenge Championship is the 11th race on tonight’s card.

Rose Mary Chandler’s Acorn (Oak Tree Special–Trio Gal (TB), by Tasso) reeled off four straight wins for trainer Janet VanBebber before finishing a lackluster sixth in the Dash For Cash Derby as the 2-to-1 choice. During his winning streak he had impressive three-quarter-length wins in the Sam Houston Derby (G2) and the Adequan Prairie Meadows Derby Challenge (G3).

The consistent gelding has started 12 times with seven wins and a pair of second-place finishes. He qualified for the final in TRJ—The Racing Journal territory, by winning the Adequan Prairie Meadows Derby Challenge on August 28.

Dan Nicks’ Diamond For Jess (Feature Mr Jess–First Place Diamond, by First Place Dash) could vie for favoritism after handy wins this year in the Remington Park Derby (G2) and the Adequan Sam Houston Derby Challenge. The Rick Robinson-trained gelding won the Remington Park Derby by half a length and the Adequan Sam Houston Derby Challenge by nearly 2 lengths.

Like Acorn, Diamond For Jess delivers winning consistency with seven victories from 15 starts.

Ronnie Armstrong’s An Ocean Rocket (Ocean Runaway–Bebes Ronas Rocket, by Ronas Ryon) has blossomed this year for trainer “Sleepy” Gilbreath after scoring only a maiden win from three starts during his 2-year-old campaign.


The gelding showed marked improvement at Ruidoso Downs this summer when he won the Adequan Ruidoso Derby Challenge by a game nose. He then came up a neck short and finished second in the Hobbs America Derby (G2) at Zia Park.


Donald and Peggy Boyle’s homebred Summit Bid (Mountains Majesty–Shirleys Strawfly, by Strawfly Special) has stepped forward with two wins in his latest two starts. The half-brother to champion Strawkins qualified for the final in TRJ—The Racing Journal territory, by winning the Adequan Canterbury Downs Derby Challenge on July 23, and then easily took a conditioned allowance at Prairie Meadows for trainer William Harris.

Four additional horses qualified for the Derby Challenge Championship in TRJ—The Racing Journal territory:

Call Me Fisher (Fishers Dash–Rare Peppermint, by Rare Form), on August 22 at Los Alamitos
Secret Battleground (Brimmerton–Secretively, by Special Leader), on June 26 at Sandy Downs
Patriots Glory (Game Patriot–Daisy N Eye, by Mr Eye Opener), on July 17 at Arapahoe Park
Memories N Moments (Leaving Memorie–Butter Milk Pie, by Pie In The Sky), on August 14 at Grande Prairie