When the horses go to post for the Louisiana Derby on Saturday at the Fairgrounds one particular rider should be a little more at ease than some of the others. Will that give him an advantage?…maybe so.
The well accomplished Kent Desormeaux will be aboard morning line favorite My Boy Jack (5-2) in the signature race for three-year olds in Louisiana. In search of qualifying points to secure a spot in the May 5 Kentucky Derby, this son of Creative Cause hopes to add to a total (12) that currently has him 20th on the charts. Jack’s trainer, Keith Desormeaux, thinks his rider may have a bit of an advantage going in. As the 144th Run for the Roses draws ever closer, many jocks can feel the pressure as conditioners will make changes going into the world’s most famous race. Trainer Desormeaux thinks this is where his brother Kent has an advantage.
“As long as my momma’s alive I could never fire Kent,” laughs Keith. “There is no pressure on him here and he knows that. In reality, we are very lucky to have him riding Jack. He is not in the hall of fame because he is lucky, it’s because he is very good. He has won races from coast to coast and the Kentucky Derby three times. The guy knows how to ride.”
My Boy Jack looks like a horse on the rise right now. With eight lifetime starts under his saddle, this grandson of Mineshaft has two wins, but has finished in the top three six times. His last race was a very impressive score in the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park in mid-February. Typical of a Keith Desormeaux trainee, Jack relaxed and came from off the pace to solidify himself as a “for real” Kentucky Derby contender. Having trained forwardly since his romp in Arkansas, the Cajun connections are looking for a big run from their Derby hope.
“He couldn’t be coming in any better,” says Keith Desormeaux. “He is healthy and seems happy with what he is doing right now. We are going to find out if he is good enough because we don’t have any excuses. If we can get a good trip I think he has a real chance to run big. That long stretch should play into a closer’s favor so we will see. I have confidence in him and in his rider. We just want to get enough points to get into that other race.”
The Louisiana Derby will go off as race 11 at The Fairgrounds on March 24 with post time slated for 5:21 central time.