Sunland Derby preview: Midnight Hawk and Chitu
Sunland Park, NM (KTSM) — The 12th running of the $800,000 Sunland Derby, the Grade III race, is just days away, with the race nearing, we're taking a look at the nine horses that will line up for a chance at an entry to the Kentucky Derby.
Baffert, a 2-time winner of the Sunland Derby (Gr. III) including last year’s triumph with Govenor Charlie, is sending out both Midnight Hawk and Chitu. Midnight Hawk is a battled tested winner of the Sham Stakes (Gr III) at Santa Anita and boasts career earnings of $171,000. Co-owned by last year winning owner Mike Pegram, Midnight Hawk will be the 5-2 morning line favorite and gets clutch money rider and Hall of Famer Mike Smith in the irons. His sire Midnight Lute also threw the speedy Govenor Charlie. Chitu completes the Baffert one-two punch and carries his own impressive credentials. The fast son of Henny Hughes ran a strong second to Candy Boy in the Robert Lewis (Gr. II) Stakes at Santa Anita last month. He has won 2 times from 3 starts. 2013 Sunland Derby (Gr. III) winning rider Martin Garcia gets the call.
Preview Courtesy: Sure Bet Racing News / Sunland Park Racetrack.