A full field of twelve is set to go to post in the 18th edition of Hoosier Park’s signature Thoroughbred event, the grade II $500,000-added Indiana Derby on Saturday, Oct. 6 at Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. In what may be one of the most competitive fields ever assembled, the Derby is slated as the 12th race on the program and has an approximate post time of 6:15 p.m.  Purses for the 12-race card top the $1.4 million mark, making it the richest day of Thoroughbred racing in the state of Indiana.

World renowned trainer, Bob Baffert is no stranger to the Indiana Derby winner’s circle as he boasts two wins in the history of the race and looks to take aim at his third victory with the Giant’s Causeway colt, Fed Biz. With two wins in two starts this season, Fed Biz returned to the races after an eight month layoff to win the $100,000 El Cajon Stakes at Del Mar on Aug. 31. Installed as the 5-2 morning line favorite, the three-year-old colt has won three of four lifetime starts and will begin from post four under jockey Rafael Bejarano.

Also headlining the list of three-year-old colts is the grade II $500,000 Louisiana Super Derby winner, Bourbon Courage. The Kellyn Gorder-trained colt has now won three of six starts in 2012 while bankrolling over $520,000 and is the morning line second choice at 7-2. Gorder has once again called on Hoosier Park’s leading jockey, Leandro Goncalves, to ride the son of Lion Heart from post eight.

The 2012 Indiana Derby field is as follows: horse/jockey/trainer/morning line odds

  1. Easter Gift (Kendrick Carmouche/Nicholas Zito) 8-1
  2. Morgan’s Guerrilla (Victor Lebron/Michael J. Maker) 20-1
  3. Junebugred (Terry Thompson/Steve Hobby) 30-1
  4. Fed Biz (Rafael Bejarano/Bob Baffert) 5-2
  5. O’Prado Again (Corey Lanerie/Dale L. Romans) 15-1
  6. Tritap (Shaun Bridgmohan/Steven M. Asmussen) 12-1
  7. Afford (Florent Geroux/Greg Geire) 30-1
  8. Bourbon Courage (Leandro Goncalves/Kellyn Gorder) 7-2
  9. Stealcase (Jermaine Bridgmohan/Mark E. Casse) 6-1
  10. Second City (Mario Gutierrez/ Ben D. A. Cecil) 20-1
  11. Neck ‘N Neck (Brain Joseph Hernandez, Jr./ Ian R. Wilkes) 9-2
  12. Adirondack King (Stewart Elliot/John C. Servis) 30-1.

The odds aren’t always with the favorites in the Indiana Derby. Out of 17 previous races, only three favorites have crossed the wire as winners. Those winners include Forty One Carats (1999), Zanjero (2007), and Lookin At Lucky (2010).

“Once again Hoosier Park Racing & Casino is welcoming some of the top trainers, jockeys and horses in the sport of Thoroughbred racing to Indiana,” said Brian Elmore, Hoosier Park’s vice president and general manager of racing. “Each year the level of competition continues to grow providing fans a day full of fast paced, thrilling horse racing action.”

Several horses that have competed in the Indiana Derby have also competed and won legs of the Triple Crown series. Previous Indiana Derby competitors have also gone on to win Breeders’ Cup events. The race increased in national exposure in 2010 when Lookin At Lucky, that year’s Preakness winner, started and won the event.

In addition to the open events, several Indiana Stakes will compliment the stellar afternoon card beginning at 12:30 p.m. The $84,000 Hillsdale Stakes, the $84,000 added City of Anderson, the $84,000 Hoosier Breeders Sophomore Stakes, the $84,000 Hoosier Breeders Sophomore Stakes “Filly Division”, the $84,000 Gus Grissom Stakes and the $84,000 Richmond Stakes are all included on the day.

About Centaur Gaming and Hoosier Park Racing & Casino: Indianapolis-based, Centaur Gaming, owns and operates Hoosier Park Racing & Casino. Hoosier Park Racing & Casino was recently ranked as the Indianapolis Area’s Most Popular Attraction for the second year in a row by the Indianapolis Business Journal and holds multiple awards from industry publications for customer service, entertainment, gaming and dining. Hoosier Park Racing & Casino, a fully integrated gaming and racing facility, features 2,000 of the latest slots and electronic table games and a 7/8 mile oval horse track offering live and simulcast Standardbred, Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse racing each year.  Simulcast wagering is also offered year-round at the Winner’s Circle Pub, Grille & OTB in Indianapolis and two off-track betting properties located in Fort Wayne and Merrillville, Indiana.