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Cowtown Cat - Kentucky Derby Contender


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Cowtown Cat Hat


2007 Kentucky Derby Contenders

Pedigree: Distorted Humor - Tom's Cat (Storm Cat)

Owner: Winstar Farm and Gulf Coast Farm

Trainer: Todd Pletcher


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07 Apr 07 Illinois Derby 1st
10 Mar 07 Gotham Stakes 1st
03 Feb 07 Swale S. 3rd
14 Jan 07 Alw 1st
3 Nov 06 Nashua 6th
8 Sep 06 MSW 1st
Cowtown Cat's Race Record
Cowtown Cat wins the Illinois Derby
WinStar Farm and Gulf Coast Farm's Cowtown Cat had the benefit of the front end on the speed-favoring Hawthorne Race Course main track and the Todd Pletcher trainee took full advantage, drawing off in the final furlong for a 2 1/4-length triumph in the $500,000 Illinois Derby (gr. II) Saturday.

Pletcher and company can only hope the 3-year-old Distorted Humor colt can emulate the 2002 Illinois Derby winner, War Emblem, who rode a front-running victory at the Cicero oval to the 2002 Kentucky Derby (gr. I) winner's circle.

Ridden by Fernando Jara for the first time -- a week after the Panamanian teenager won the Dubai World Cup (UAE-I) aboard Invasor -- Cowtown Cat milked an easy pace -- :24 4/5, :49 2/5 and 1:13 2/5 -- and was breathing fire in the stretch as the runner-up Reporting to Duty vainly tried to mount a challenge for Chris Emigh. Reporting for Duty held second while Bold Start, ridden by Larry Melancon, ran evenly for third, three-quarters of a length behind the runner-up. The winning time was 1:51 1/5.

"He was very relaxed all the way," Jara said. "And when I asked him to do anything, it was done."

Cowtown Cat is headed to the Kentucky Derby on May 5 at Churchill Downs, with Jara confident the horse is capable of stretching out to the 1 1/4-mile distance.

" I think it's going to be better for him," Jara said. "He was still strong after the wire."