Texas Classic Derby

Texas Classic Derby

Odds-on favorite KJ Desparado scores a wire-to-wire victory at Lone Star Park

KJ Desparado. PHOTO: Dustin Orona Photography

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A sharp break from post 5 helped KJ Desparado score a wire-to-wire win in Saturday's 440-yard, $412,569 Texas Classic Derby (G1) at Lone Star Park.

Ridden by Adrian Ramos and sent to post as the 1-2 choice in a full field of 10 3-year-olds, KJ Desparado covered his quarter-mile trip in :21.244, and his margin of victory was a clear 1 1/2 lengths from Delight Us All. Wes Giles saddled the gelded son of world champion Apollitical Jess for owners John Lee, Wanda Kathy Lee, and Ruben Mares.

KJ Desparado was the co-fastest qualifier from trials contested on October 29. The gelding was bred in Arizona by L & I Land and Cattle, and he is out of Tres Veses, a daughter of 2001 champion 2-year-old colt Tres Seis. He traces back to his third dam, Runaway Kate, a Runaway Winner mare who won the 1995 AQHA Texas Juvenile Challenge Stakes at Manor Downs.

The $183,593 winner's share of the purse from his fourth Grade 1 stakes score pushed KJ Desparado's bankroll to $2,706,103. Raced in three states, including New Mexico and Arizona, the gelding has won 12 of 17 outs, and his six wins in seven starts at the classic 440-yard distance include last year's All American Futurity (G1) at Ruidoso Downs.

Hes No Illusion was third, two lengths behind KJ Desparado. San Lorenzo Tay, Lil Longmire, Rock Solid Stones, KJ Wildthang, The Big Favorite, Shesa Relentless Gal, and Moonin My Memories completed the order of finish.

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