Un Ojo: Kentucky Derby contender profile
Un Ojo sprung a 75-1 upset in February’s Rebel (G2) at Oaklawn Park to earn a Kentucky Derby berth, and the late-running dark bay will try to rebound from a troubled trip in the Arkansas Derby (G1). The lone gelding in this year’s 20-horse field, Un Ojo was based at Delta Downs prior to joining the Kentucky Derby scene over the winter. His name resulted from a paddock accident as a yearling in which Un Ojo lost his left eye.
Owner: A private purchase for Kevin Moody’s Cypress Creek Equine and Carrol Castille’s Whispering Oaks Farm, Un Ojo will be the second consecutive Derby starter for Cypress Creek, which finished seventh with their inaugural participant last year, Keepmeinmind, and the first for Whispering Oaks. Nine geldings have captured the Kentucky Derby, and dark bay Un Ojo will try to become only the second New York-bred winner (Funny Cide in 2003).
Trainer: Based in Louisiana, Ricky Courville will make his first Kentucky Derby start. He’s shared training duties with Tony Dutrow, who raced Un Ojo in a pair of Aqueduct stakes over the winter, and Courville is a former jockey who took out his training license in 2008.
Jockey: Ramon Vasquez, who picked up the mount for Un Ojo’s last two starts in Arkansas, will make his second appearance in the Kentucky Derby, and first since an unplaced effort aboard Mr. Z in 2015.
Sire: Un Ojo is from the second crop of 2016 Jim Dandy (G2) winner Laoban, a son of Uncle Mo, the sire of 2016 Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist and 2022 Derby runner Mo Donegal. Laoban unfortunately passed away last year at age eight, siring only five crops.
Dam: Un Ojo is out of the multiple stakes-placed Risk a Chance, a daughter of 1992 Belmont S. (G1) winner A.P. Indy. By 1977 Triple Crown hero Seattle Slew, A.P. Indy counts 2006 Preakness (G1) winner Bernardini and 2007 Belmont S. winner Rags to Riches among his 12 champions, but he never sired a Kentucky Derby winner. As a prolific broodmare sire, A.P. Indy is responsible for the dam of 2010 Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver.
Top Brisnet Speed: 92, Rebel
Top Brisnet Late Pace: 105, Rebel