04/04/2013 4:32PM

Fonner Park: Diamond Joe streaking, prepping for Bosselman


GRAND ISLAND, Neb. - Diamond Joe seeks his third straight stakes win of the meet and preps for a likely appearance later this month in the $75,000 Bosselman/Gus Fonner Stakes as he headlines a field of eight in the $20,000-guaranteed Dowd Mile Stakes at Fonner Park on Saturday.

After making a run of nine straight wins last year as a 3-year-old, Diamond Joe earned a shot in the Oklahoma Derby, where he was clearly not himself in the gate or on the track when he ran last in the field of 10. A son of Dazzling Falls trained by Chuck Turco, he has started a new streak this year by winning both the Ogataul Stakes for statebreds and most recently the Tondi-Budweiser Stakes, both at six furlongs.

The Dowd Mile serves as the local prep for the Bosselman/Gus Fonner Stakes going 1 1/16 miles on April 27. While Diamond Joe should be heavily favored here, he will be meeting seasoned veteran stakes runners this time around.

Stanley Mankin will send out a capable pair of Corporate Chapel and Wild Jacob as a coupled entry. Corporate Chapel is a bit light on experience, with 2 wins from his 9 career starts, but Wild Jacob could prove a handful in this field. Wild Jacob has won 6 of his 18 career starts, including the John Bullitt Stakes over the Canterbury Park turf course last year. He was a fast-closing second in last year's edition of the Bosselman and will be eyeing a berth in that race again this year.

Bach's Homebrew has met Diamond Joe in both of his starts this year, finishing third in the Ogataul and fourth in the Bud-Tondi, but he is a proven miler. Trained by Larry Staroscik, Bach's Homebrew owns a mark of 6-1-0 from 8 career starts going a mile and should be getting into gear late.

** Co-featured on the 11-race card is the $15,000-added Pepsi Stakes for 3-year-old fillies, where Charlie Smith returns to Nebraska with likely favorite Portales. Although winless in two starts at Delta Downs and Sam Houston this year, last year she was multiple stakes placed in Canada, including a win in the Winnipeg Futurity at Assiniboia Downs.