04/11/2013 11:58AM

Fonner: Maiden runner Call Me Bubba merits respect in Special

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Call Me Bubba may be a maiden but he still merits strong consideration as the favorite when a field of eight Nebraska-bred colts and geldings meet at six furlongs in the $25,000 Fonner Park Special Stakes on Saturday afternoon.

Trained by LaVerne Ballhagen, Call Me Bubba has made 5 of his 7 starts against stakes company and has only been off the board once since making his career debut last summer in the Lincoln Futurity, where he finished a late-running fifth going 4 1/2 furlongs.

This year, Call Me Bubba was a late-running third going a half-mile against maiden company in his seasonal bow. He returned to again be third, beaten a length, in the six-furlong Baxter Stakes on March 23.

Leading trainer David Anderson will send out Diamonds Ace, Just Happened, and Magnetic Jazz as an uncoupled entry in the Special with Diamonds Ace the top horse of the trio.

Diamonds Ace won his maiden last Sunday in impressive fashion by 7 1/2 lengths going six furlongs against statebred rivals. He is a half-brother to Diamond Joe, who won 9 of 12 starts last year. Diamonds Ace is also a likely candidate to vie for favoritism in this field.

Just Happened was a good second against entry-level allowance company April 6. Magnetic Jazz won his maiden last year in the Columbus Futurity. He rallied mildly but was a non-threatening eighth in an entry-level allowance on March 9 and will be making his first start since then.