06/30/2011 5:19PM

Arapahoe: Wally Van will try to relax


Wally Van has been beaten just once in Colorado-bred company, when he got caught in a speed duel. On Saturday, trainer Tyrone Gleason is hoping for a little different trip from the horse when he attempts to nail down his second stakes of the Arapahoe Park meet in the $30,000 Colorado Thoroughbred Breeders’ Association Derby.

“I think he’ll sit,” Gleason said. “I think he can lay back there off of them a bit.”

Wally Van has made three starts against Colorado-breds. He wired such rivals when he won a maiden special weight in his career debut last June. Wally Van then romped by more than eight lengths in a trial for the CTBA Futurity. But in the finale, he was part of a quick pace and finished third to Class Favorite and Cover More, both of whom will be part of the 10-horse CTBA Derby field Saturday.

But since meeting those rivals, Wally Van has proven effective from off the pace. He rallied from seven lengths back to finish second by a length in the $40,000 Inaugural at Arapahoe in his most recent start May 29, and ended up being placed first in the race after being carried out by a rival.

Wally Van will be moving back to two turns for the 1 1/16-mile CTBA Derby. He has yet to win at two turns, but missed by a neck at the trip in a 6 1/2-furlong allowance at SunRay Park on May 7.

Travis Wales has the mount from post 5, and the pair could get a tracking trip behind Northern Twist.