Hold Air Hostage Captures Derby

Hold Air Hostage runaway winner of All American Derby.

Quarter Racing Journal

Hold Air Hostage wins the All American Derby. PHOTO: Richard Chamberlain

Hold Air Hostage left no doubt in the $1,365,908 All American Derby (G1).

The Apollitical Jess gelding and race favorite, broke from Post 7 and proceeded to extend his lead throughout the 440 yard race, stopping the clock at :21.231 with a 2 1/4 length advantage on his rivals.

He was ridden by Rodrigo Vallejo for trainer James Padgett II and owners Darling Farms. This is his sixth victory in eight starts this year, which also include victories in the Rainbow Derby (G1) and Heritage Place Derby (G2).

“I don’t want to sound too confident or like I’m bragging, but as soon as he broke in front, it was over,” said Padgett. “I mean, the horse is a monster. He’s the fastest horse I’ve ever seen. Once he left like that, all that was left was the screaming.”

The $573,681 first-place earnings boosts his career earnings to $1,216,317. He has a career record of 11-8-1-1.

Johnny Trotter’s One Sweet Racy finished second at 39-1 odds. Hold Air Hostage’s stablemate Duponte was third, followed by The Marfa Lights, De La Eagle, Elicity, Machismo Moon, Magestic Eagle, Bellissima Chocolata and Myst Fit.
Hold Air Hostage was bred by Luis Miguel Albores Gleason out of the Fols Gold mare Fols Zookie Cookie.

“I’m lucky. God has blessed me,” said owner Dan Darling. “No longer than we’ve been in (racing), to have the horses that we’ve had, we’re blessed. It has nothing to do with brains – it’s luck, we’re blessed.”

The connections said they would wait to see how the horse pulled up before making any decisions, but with the race victory they did earn a berth to the December Champion of Champions at Los Alamitos.

In the $100,000 First Down Dash, Tough To Bee took the race by a neck over last year’s All American Futurity (G1) winner, Imperial Eagle.

Tough To Bee was ridden by Ricky Ramirez for trainer Trey Wood and owner Paragon Farms LLC.

He covered the 440-yards in :21.421, and earned $42,967 for the effort. His career record stands at seven wins in 13 starts, including five of six this year, and career earnings of $551,973. He co-won the Ruidoso Derby (G1) earlier this summer.

The gelding is by Apollitical Jess and out of the Tres Seis mare Peppermint Seis. He was bred by Jim and Marilyn Helzer.

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