GUNNEVERA HEADS FULL FIELD OF AMBITIOUS 2-YEAR-OLDS ENTERED IN NEXT SATURDAY’S $1,000,000 DELTA DOWNS JACKPOT

TRIPLE CROWN WINNING TRAINER BOB BAFFERT WILL SEND OUT HOT SEAN

 VINTON, LA. – Delta Downs’ racing office saw a flurry of activity on Friday morning as final entries and post positions were drawn for next Saturday’s $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot (Gr. III). The 5-2 morning line favorite for the 14th running of the track’s signature event is Gunnevera, winner of the Saratoga Special (Gr. II) in August. Gunnevera hails from the barn of Antonio Sano. A total of 10 talented 2-year-olds were entered for the 1-1/16 mile race.

The 7-2 second choice in the morning line is Bob Baffert’s trainee Hot Sean. Baffert is a Hall of Fame conditioner who is best known for his work with 2015 Triple Crown winner American Pharoah. Hot Sean will be making his stakes debut in the Jackpot after winning consecutive races at Santa Anita in October. Baffert’s best finish in the Jackpot came in 2006 with Pirates Deputy.

Doug O’Neill, who won this year’s Kentucky Derby with Nyquist and the 2013 ‘Run for the Roses’ with I’ll Have Another, will saddle Dangerfield next Saturday. Dangerfield will try to give O’Neil his second win in the Jackpot after Goldencents took the race in 2012.

Included in the field is Louisiana Bred Tip Tap Tapizar. The Sapling Stakes winner is twice placed in Graded Stakes, running 2nd in the Gr. II Saratoga Special S. and 3rd in the Gr. III Bashford Manor S.

The $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot is the centerpiece of an 11-race program that will feature eight stakes races, two graded stakes, and over $2.3 million in total purse money.

The entire field for the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot is listed below along with morning line odds for each horse.

Post #           Horse                                  Jockey                        Trainer                                   ML

1               Pat On the Back                   Robby Albarado        Kenneth McPeek                 15-1

2               Line Judge                             C. J. McMahon           Joe Sharp                               6-1

3               Thirstforlife                         Florent Geroux          Mark Casse                            8-1

4              Our Stormin Norman         Julien Leparoux         Mark Casse                           8-1

5              Dangerfield                           Flavien Prat                Doug O’Neill                        12-1

6              Gunnevera                            Javier Castellano       Antonio Sano                       5-2

7              Balandeen                             Channing Hill            Chris Hartman                   10-1

8              Hot Sean                                Martin Pedroza          Bob Baffert                           7-2

9               J Boys Echo                           Corey Lanerie           Dale Romans                         8-1

10            Tip Tap Tapizar                    Gerard Melancon     Steve Asmussen                 10-1

 

 The winner of Saturday’s main event will earn a $600,000 paycheck and 10 points toward a possible starting position in next year’s Kentucky Derby by way of the ‘Road to the Kentucky Derby’ series. Since 2002, a total of 14 horses have participated in the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot before going on to compete in the Kentucky Derby as 3-year-olds. There have been eight horses make it to the Kentucky Derby after running in the $1,000,000 Delta Downs Jackpot since 2013.