Pennsylvania Derby 2014 at Parx

Dave Bond | OTB Writer
Pennsylvania Derby 2014 OTB

Las Vegas, NV - Parx Racing in Bensalem, Pennsylvania will play host to the Grade 2 Pennsylvania Derby on Saturday, September 20. A nice purse of $1 million will be on the line for three year olds willing to go 1 1/8 miles on Parx's main track.

A talented group of eight will line up in the Pennsylvania Derby - race 12 on Parx's Saturday card. Post time is 5:40 PM. Here is a brief look into the past performances of all eight combatants for this lucrative Grade 2 stakes.

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2014 Pennsylvania Derby Race Favorite Entries

California Chrome - Art Sherman pupil hasn't been seen since a somewhat disappointing fourth place finish in the Belmont Stakes June 7 which followed a terrific six race win streak - in the Preakness Stakes, a four length win in the Kentucky Derby, the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby, the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes by 7 1/4 lengths and two minor stakes scores. He now has 13 career starts with eight wins and a second place finish and will be looking to bounce back after a substandard effort last time out- he could secure three year old Horse of the Year honors with a good performance here. California Chrome starts from the unfavorable rail with Victor Espinoza aboard the even money favorite.

Bayern - Bob Baffert trained colt has eight starts and has hit the board in all except for a disappointing ninth in the Preakness and a shocking tenth last time out as favorite in the Grade 1 Travers at Saratoga August 23. Before the Travers was a terrific two race win streak - the Grade 1 Haskell Invitational at Monmouth Park followed the Grade 2 Woody Stephens at Belmont Park June 7. Before the Preakness was a good second after getting disqualified from victory in the Grade 3 Derby Trial Stakes at Churchill Downs April 26 and a third in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby April 12. He started his career with two straight wins as well. Bayern is used to being at or near the top and should be eager to show that his last effort was the exception, not the rule. Martin Garcia rides the 7-2 morning line second choice from post 4.

Pennsylvania Derby 2014 | Remaining Contenders

Tapiture - Steve Asmussen pupil has four graded stakes wins, two seconds and two third place finishes in 10 career starts and is coming off a nice two race win streak - the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby last time out August 2 and the Grade 3 Matt Winn Stakes at Churchill Downs June 14 which followed an ugly fifteenth place finish in the Kentucky Derby. Before that was an OK fourth in the Grade 1 Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park, a second in the Grade 2 Rebel Stakes March 15 and two straight wins - the Grade 3 Southwest Stakes and the Grade 2 Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes. He has been at or near the top in every career start - more of the same is expected Saturday. Rosie Napravnik will be aboard the 5-1 third choice from post 7.

Protonico - lightly raced Todd Pletcher trained colt has five career starts with three wins and a third place finish. He is coming off his best career result - a win in the Grade 3 Smarty Jones Stakes on this track September 1 which followed an OK third behind Travers winner V.E. Day in the minor Curlin Stakes at Saratoga July 25, an Allowance Optional Claiming score in June and a sixth in his only other graded stakes action to date - the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes at Aqueduct way back in November. Protonico will look to make it two straight graded stakes scores on this track when he leaves from post 2 at 6-1 odds with Javier Castellano guiding him.

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C J's Awesome - Kenneth McPeek trained colt races in stakes company for the first time Saturday after eight career starts produced two wins, two seconds and two third place finishes. Last time out was an Allowance score at Saratoga September 1 after a third in a similar race in July and after breaking maiden in his sixth career start - June 27 at Churchill Downs. Edgar Prado will be in the reins of the 12-1 shot from the outside post Saturday.

Candy Boy - has 10 career starts for trainer John Sadler and is coming off a pair of good seconds - in the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby last time out August 2 and behind two-year old champion Shared Belief in the Grade 2 Los Alamitos Derby July 2. He also had a second in the Grade 1 CashCall Futurity behind Shared Belief December 14. He finished a disappointing thirteenth in the Kentucky Derby after an OK third behind California Chrome in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby April 5 and recorded a terrific win in the Grade 2 Robert B. Lewis Stakes February 8. Candy Boy has two wins, four seconds and a third in his last eight starts and will look to build on a good effort last time out. He has been competitive in every race the last year except for the Kentucky Derby and will have Joel Rosario in the saddle from post 2 at 12-1 odds.

Classic Giacnroll - His 12 career starts produced two wins, four seconds and two third place finishes. Last time out was a good second behind Protonico in the Grade 3 Smarty Jones Stakes on this track September 1 which followed an OK fourth behind Tapiture, Candy Boy and Vicar's in Trouble in the Grade 2 West Virginia Derby August 2 and a second in an Allowance Optional Claiming on this track July 8. Classic Giacnroll hasn't posted victory since an Allowance score on this very track a year ago and hopes to snap that streak this week. Ken Carmouche gets the call from post 6 at 15-1 on the morning line.

Noble Moon - was last seen running fourth in the Grade 1 King's Bishop Stakes at Saratoga August 23 after a sixth in the Grade 1 Wood Memorial Stakes in April, a win in the Grade 2 Jerome Stakes at Aqueduct January 4 and a third in the Grade 2 Nashua Stakes November 3. His debut was a 6 furlong MSW score by three quarters of a length in his debut at Belmont Park September 14. Noble Moon has two wins and a third place finish in five career starts but has failed to hit the board in his last two starts overall. Irad Ortiz has the mount from post 5 on the longest shot in the field - 20-1 odds.

2014 Pennsylvania Derby Entries & Odds

Race 12 on Parx Racing's Saturday card with a Post Time of 5:40 PM.

Entry Horse Jockey Trainer ML Odds
1 California Chrome V. Espinoza A. Sherman
2 Candy Boy J. Rosario J. Sadler
3 Protonico J. Castellano T. Pletcher
4 Bayern M. Garcia B. Baffert
5 Noble Moon I. Ortiz, Jr. L. Gyarmati
6 Classic Giacnroll K. Carmouche L. Guerrero
7 Tapiture R. Napravnik S. Asmussen
8 C J's Awesome E. Prado K. McPeek

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