One Mean Man rallies for American Derby score
The Bernie Flint-trained sophomore raced well off the early pace of :23.83, :48.88 and 1:13.18 set by Weavers Ice Cold. Tequilla Joe was tracking in second while Swagger Jagger and Oscar Nominated kept each other company in third and fourth.
One Mean Man shifted closer to the rail on the backstretch, saving ground until coming out four wide past the quarter-pole. Swagger Jagger was engaged in a bumping battle up front with Oscar Nominated and Tequila Joe, taking a very short lead in upper stretch, but was no match as One Mean Man continued motoring to finish 1 1/8 miles over the firm turf in 1:48.86.
One Mean Man paid $13.80 after being sent off at nearly 6-1. Oscar Nominated got up between rivals to take second by a length over Tequila Joe, while Swagger Jagger completed the top four another neck back. Two Step Time, Itsnotezbeinbreezy, J R’s Holiday, Lomcevak, Weavers Ice Cold, The Rouge Diesel and Mongolian Holiday followed.
One Mean Man earned his first graded win in this spot and now boasts a 13-4-3-1, $214,772, career record. The gray son of Mizzen Mast didn’t even garner his first stakes victory until capturing the Keith Gee Memorial on January 31 but quickly followed with a nice runner-up effort in the Black Gold Stakes on February 27, both at Fair Grounds.
Flint then sent the colt, whom he co-bred with Ron Hillerich, to Keeneland to take part in the Transylvania Stakes (G3), where One Mean Man finished sixth. A head second in the Arlington Classic (G3) followed before the Kentucky-bred scored against allowance foes at Churchill Downs last out on June 25.
One Mean Man is out of the unraced Grand Slam mare Abbeyville Miss, who is a half-sister to Grade 1-placed sire Unbridled Express as well as the dam of multiple Grade 1-placed stakes winner Tourist.
One Mean Man is himself a half-sibling to multiple Grade 3 heroine Mizz Money, and this female family also boasts dual Japanese champion Hishi Akebono and Group 1-scoring sires Agnes World, Librettist and Dubai Destination.
One Mean Man screenshot photo
AMERICAN DERBY QUOTES
Robby Albarado, jockey One Mean Man, winner: “He was a little further back than I anticipated, but he was there for me. Of all the times I’ve ridden him, that was probably his best finish.”
Bernie Flint, trainer One Mean Man, winner: “His sister did very well here and she won the Pucker Up (at 1 1/8 miles), so it only made sense to come back. He’s a great horse and he has a big heart. In fact, the last time he was second, he thought he won.”
Corey Lanerie, jockey Oscar Nominated, second: "My horse ran good. I was sitting right in the pocket, and I tried to ease out. I think the #2 horse (Swagger Jagger) kept laying all over me, got me off stride a little bit. I think that might have hurt a little bit. He had to keep re-rallying. Then, the winner kind of got a jump on him."
Carlos Marquez Jr., jockey Tequila Joe, third: "I had a great trip. He gave me everything he had, and I'm very happy with his performance.”
Mitchell Murrill, jockey Swagger Jagger, fourth: “It was a good trip, everything went perfect, when we got the chance to run my horse took away and went down the lane but just got caught.”
Jose Valdivia Jr., jockey Two Step Time, fifth: “Couldn’t have asked for a better trip from (post 10). I tucked in behind the winner at first, but was able to drop over, but when I called on him he just evened out. Perfect trip, not enough horse today.”
Santo Sanjur, jockey Itsnotezbeinbreezy, sixth: “He went really good. He’s a maiden, and he has a good future.”