Emerald Downs Derby and Washington Oaks hot ticket for weekend | Horse Racing

In what appeared to be a one-horse show in both sophomore divisions has suddenly become a wide-open affair as 3-year-olds compete for divisional honors in a stakes doubleheader Saturday, August 11 and Sunday, August 12 at Emerald Downs.

On Saturday, fillies race 1-1/8 miles in the $65,000 Washington Oaks. And Sunday, colts and geldings take center stage in the $65,000 Emerald Downs Derby.

Both trained by Tom Wenzel, 3-year-old colt Makors Mark and 3-year-old filly Exclusive Diva emerged as standouts after they swept the first two races in their respective divisions. In the third leg, however, both were upended as Makors Finale gave way to finish fourth to Italian Boy in the Seattle Slew Handicap, while stable mate Exclusive Diva couldn’t repel a counterpunch from 28-to-1 long shot Champagneandcaviar in the Kent Handicap.

In the Derby division, speedy up-and-comer Italian Boy has been the meet’s buzz horse, winning four straight races at four different distances, including the 1-1/16-mile Seattle Slew. Adding the Derby’s extra half-furlong could prove difficult for the Tizbud colt to carry his speed, leaving an opportunity for late-runner D’honorable One, who has finished first, second or third in all eight career races, including a dead-heat victory with Makors Finale in the June 3 Auburn Handicap.

Speaking of Makors Finale, the Makors Mark colt could see familiar rival Taylors Deal, who beat Makors Finale soundly in two stakes races at Turf Paradise. In his most recent start, Taylors Deal ran runner-up on July 2 in the Chris Loseth Handicap at Hastings.

On the filly side, Exclusive Diva should attract plenty of betting interest in the Oaks despite her unexpected loss in the Kent. A new shooter like Evelyn’s Dancer, however, could challenge Exclusive Diva’s quest for Top 3-Year-Old Filly. Coming off back-to-back stakes wins at Hastings, Evelyn’s Dancer has the tactical speed and stamina to be a dangerous contender.

Nominations for the 33rd Washington Oaks-Saturday, August 11


Horse                   Owner                           Trainer

Bobbylouie (3-WA)       Savario Farm                    Diane Garrison

Champagneandcaviar (3-KY)Fleur De Lis Stables                           Howard Belvoir

Evelyn’s Dancer (3-KY)  Mark Dedomenico & Glen Todd     Michael Puhich

Exclusive Diva (3-KY)   Northwest Farms & Debbie Paxton Tom Wenzel

Lady Vivien (3-KY)      Oak Crest Farm                  Larry Ross

Our Eleanor (3-KY)      Peter Redekop B.C., Ltd.                Craig MacPherson

Regal Betty (3-FL)      Michael Talla                   John W. Sadler

Royal Moses (3-WA)      Squatting Dog Stable & RG Warwick       Tim Harder

Stephiano (3-KY)                Dr. Rodney Orr                  Chris Stenslie

Talk to My Lawyer (3-WA)        Will This One Do Stable         Chris Stenslie

Whiskey Miner (3-WA)    Jack Porter                     Neil Knapp


Nominations for the 75th Emerald Downs Derby-Sunday, August 12


Horse                   Owner                           Trainer

Brady’s Kat (3-WA)      West Coast Racing LLC           David Martinez

D’honorable One (3-FLA) Nelson Family Racing            Blaine Wright

Edge Forward (3-KY)     Ivor & Jack Jones                       Doris Harwood

Faster Than Duke (3-WA) Brotherton Racing Group I               Larry Ross

Havanna Red (3-WA)      C.E. & Ann Richardson           Chris Stenslie

Italian Boy (3-WA)      Luigi DiPietro & Diana DiPietro                 Tim McCanna

Makors Finale (3-WA)    Karl Krieg                                      Tom Wenzel

Taylors Deal (3-BC)     North American Tbred Racing Co.         Troy Taylor

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