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Arkansas Derby Contender Spotlight: Wells Bayou
Wells Bayou winning the Louisiana Derby (Hodges Photography)

Arkansas Derby Contender Spotlight: Wells Bayou

HOT SPRINGS, AR – Trainer Brad Cox’s Wells Bayou will go for his second straight graded stakes score when he breaks from the far outside post in Saturday’s 2nd division of the $500,000 Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.

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Wells Bayou broke his maiden on debut by 2 1/4 lengths while covering 6 furlongs over a sloppy Keeneland main track, but he failed to have the same result over a similarly messy Churchill Downs course in his next start. He returned on January 26 to win a muddy mile-long allowance/optional claiming event here by 4 lengths, finished just a length behind familiar rival Silver Prospector in the local Southwest Stakes (G3).

Wells Bayou successfully stretched out to 1 3/16 miles in the Louisiana Derby (G2), taking the field gate to wire to win by 1 1/2 lengths. Florent Geroux will likely attempt similar tactics when he hops in the saddle for the third straight race.

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The Arkansas Derby is a Kentucky Derby (G1) prep race awarding a total of 170 points to the top four finishers. The winner will receive 100 points, with 40 going to second, 20 to third, and 10 to fourth.

Here is the full field for the 1st division of the Arkansas Derby (click on each horse’s name to read an exclusive preview):

PostHorseJockeyTrainerMorning Line Odds
1Finnick the FierceMartin GarciaRey Hernandez15/1
2SaratogianJoe TalamoRodolphe Brisset50/1
3Storm the CourtFlavien PratPeter Eurton6/1
4King GuillermoSamy CamachoJuan Avila3/1
5NadalJoel RosarioBob Baffert5/2
6Code RunnerStewart ElliottSteve Asmussen50/1
7Silver ProspectorRicardo Santana, Jr.Steve Asmussen10/1
8Fast EnoughTyler BazeRafael Becerra12/1
9TaishanDavid CohenRichard Baltas15/1
10Farmington RoadJavier CastellanoTodd Pletcher12/1
11Wells BayouFlorent GerouxBrad Cox7/2

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