Mo Tom revisits Louisiana for Super Derby

September 7th, 2016

Mo Tom has returned to the Pelican State for the first time since running fourth as the 2-1 favorite in the March 26 Louisiana Derby (G2), and the occasion is Saturday’s $400,000 Super Derby (G3) at Louisiana Downs.

Mo Tom actually began his career in his native state of Kentucky, breaking his maiden at Ellis Park and going on to finish third in a Keeneland allowance, capturing the Street Sense Stakes at Churchill Downs and concluding his two-year-old campaign under the Twin Spires with a third in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes (G2).

Trainer Tom Amoss then brought the dark bay son of Uncle Mo to Louisiana, where he scored a 2 1/4-length victory in the Lecomte Stakes (G3) at Fair Grounds on his quest for Kentucky Derby (G1) glory. He didn’t get the best of trips in Fair Grounds’ final two Derby preps, checking sharply in both the Risen Star Stakes (G2) and Louisiana Derby to be third and fourth, respectively.

Mo Tom still had enough points to make the Kentucky Derby field, but once again found himself with a troubled trip when steadied and then fanned about seven wide to wind up eighth on the wire at 25-1. The colt was brought back in late June at Thistledown and finally got a clean run that resulted in a three-length score in the Ohio Derby.

Though originally entered in the West Virginia Derby (G2) at Mountaineer Park, Mo Tom’s connections decided to skip that August 6 event. Instead, he shows up in the Super Derby with Joe Bravo taking the reins for the first time.

Six other runners were entered in the nine-furlong Super Derby, including Dalmore and Texas Chrome.

Dalmore earned a 103 BRIS Speed rating when taking the Affirmed Stakes (G3) on July 2 at Santa Anita Park and is getting some major class relief in this spot off a fifth-place run in the Pacific Classic (G1) behind California Chrome, Beholder, Dortmund and Hoppertunity.

The Keith Desormeaux-trained son of Colonel John brings regular rider Kent Desormeaux along for the journey.

Texas Chrome is one of four runners in the Super Derby to have already tested Louisiana Downs’ track. That came in the venue’s prep race for the event, the Super Derby Prelude Stakes on August 6.

Texas Chrome prevailed in that 1 1/16-mile affair by a half-length and was awarded a 101 BRIS Speed rating. C.J. McMahon was aboard that day and retains the mount for trainer J. R. Caldwell.

Mending Fences, Classy Bird and Fort Pulaski are the other entrants with experience at Louisiana Downs. All three also ran in the Super Derby Prelude, finishing third, fifth and seventh, respectively.

Whateverybodywants enters this contest off a runner-up effort in the West Virginia Derby, and completes the field for trainer Kellyn Gorder.

Mo Tom photo courtesy of Lou Hodges Jr./Hodges Photography