Looking for Dude Fantasy, J Boys Echo to shine at Delta Downs

Profile Picture: Vance Hanson

November 19th, 2016

The Road to the Kentucky Derby and Road to the Kentucky Oaks series wind their respective ways through Vinton, Louisiana, on Saturday with point scoring opportunities in the $1 million Delta Downs Jackpot (G3) and $400,000 Delta Downs Princess (G3).

Ed DeRosa's $200,000 guaranteed all-stakes Pick 4 play covers the horses I'm most interested in these two graded stakes. Like Ed, I'm impressed with Dude Fantasy's and Golden Mischief's winning two-turn experience, in particular Dude Fantasy's rally from off of a moderate pace in the My Dear Girl division of the Florida Sires S. at Gulfstream last time. She's produced three sharp works in the interim, and while I'm not thrilled with her post position (10), a stronger early tempo in this one-mile test can only benefit her.

Golden Mischief won the key local prep for this, the $100,000 My Trusty Cat, and that experience over this bullring perhaps will be the key factor. From a win bet perspective, however, Dude Fantasy will likely be the value as maiden-winning shippers from the barns of Bob Baffert and Doug O'Neill will potentially be over bet.

The Jackpot is a tough race on paper. One colt with relatively less experience that nonetheless appears to have a lot of upside is J Boys Echo, who overcame a slow start to finish second in his 6 1/2-furlong debut at Churchill, and then proved much the best when stretching out to 1 1/16 miles in taking a Keeneland maiden by 5 1/2 lengths for trainer Dale Romans.

By Mineshaft and out of Grade 2-winning sprinter Letgomyecho, J Boys Echo is another who could potentially benefit from a contested pace. I also view the addition of jockey Kent Desormeaux, who won the inaugural Jackpot in 2002 with Outta Here and last year's renewal with eventual Preakness (G1) winner Exaggerator, as an asset. If near his 8-1 morning line price at post time, he'll be my betting interest in the win pool.

(Lauren King/Adam Coglianese Photography)

Click here for free Brisnet Past Performances for the $200,000 guaranteed all-stakes Pick 4 at Delta Downs, including the Delta Downs Jackpot and Delta Downs Princess.