Race Preview: Hollywood Derby - Hollywood Park, December 1, 2013

December 1st, 2013

The first of the two Grade 1 turf races at Hollywood Park on Sunday, December 1 is the 72nd running of the Hollywood Derby, a ten-furlong race for three-year-olds. This year a field of 10 will break from the gate with Admiral Kitten the 5-2 morning line favorite.

Admiral Kitten is coming off a second place finish in the Grade 1 Jamaica Handicap at Belmont Park in early October and is a Grade 1 winner having won the Secretariat at Arlington Park in August. The Ken and Sarah Ramsey color bearer looks to have had some time off after the Jamaica and has been working steadily since late October. He will be doing his best running late.

If Rookie Sensation goes off at his morning line of 9-2, he is worth every cent that you bet. By Unbridled's Song, Rookie Sensation is a neck away from winning four straight and he has gotten better with each start. Now he did get the run of the race in the Grade 2 Twilight Derby at Santa Anita in his last race, but he beat a good field and will love the added distance. Gut feeling is he will not be anywhere close to 9-2.

While the race is not lacking on quality, it does appear to be lacking pace. Dry Summer looks to be lone speed and could get brave if left alone. The gelding set the pace in the Twilight Derby, but faded to finish fourth. This is his second start off a two-month layoff and should be fitter for the run.

Gervinho ran third all the way around Santa Anita in the Twilight Derby and may find himself a default second early. He has a good kick and is another making his second start off the layoff. Two starts back he won the Oceanside Stakes on opening day at Del Mar.

The new face in the race is Seek Again, a Kentucky bred son of Speightstown that races for the Juddmonte Farms. Seek Again has run seven times in his career, all in England, with three wins and two seconds. His dam, Light Jig, was trained by Bobby Frankel for seven starts in 2004 including a win in the Grade 1 Yellow Ribbon at Santa Anita. Seek Again is making his graded stakes debut on Saturday and after the Euro domination at the Breeders' Cup, he may be the right long shot to back.

Post time for the Hollywood Derby is 6:04 pm ET.