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Malibu Moon's Prospective hits Derby trail in Tampa


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Prospective gets up in the $100,000 Pasco S. -Tom Cooley Photography
Prospective's victory in the $100,000, seven-furlong Pasco S. for 3-year-olds at Tampa Bay Downs on Jan. 14 will likely put the dark bay son of Malibu Moon, who was bred by Spendthrift Farm, on the 2012 Kentucky Derby (G1) trail.

The colt's win had a few tense moments for his backers after seeing him near the back of the ten-horse field after a half mile in :46.09 seconds. But rider Luis Contreras began his move around the turn, then went five wide into the stretch. Just two lengths back with a furlong to go, gained the lead shortly thereafter to win by a half-length in 1:23.88, just 0.21 seconds off the stakes record.

Prospective, who won the Grade 3 Grey S. at Woodbine in October, endured some early bumping out of the gate, but that didn’t concern trainer Mark Casse. “He did get bothered a little bit, but I wasn’t expecting him to be close, anyway,” Casse said. “So it kind of worked out fine.”

“He broke very well and settled down nicely,” Contreras said. “In the turn, I asked him to close on the leaders and he closed very quickly and just swept by them. I really like this horse. The Breeders’ Cup was really disappointing, but I’d like to get back to Churchill with him again.”

Contreras was referring to the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (G1) in November, Prospective's only off the board finish that still befuddles Casse, who added the Grade 3, $250,000 Sam F. Davis S. at Tampa Bay Downs on Feb. 4 could be next on Prospective’s agenda.

Owned by John Oxley, Prospective has now earned $191,317 with a record of 3-1-0 from five starts. Oxley purchased the colt with a winning bid of $250,000 at the 2010 Fasig-Tipton yearling sale.
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