08/18/2013 7:56PM

Hastings: MacPherson gets stakes wins with Bluegrass Pride, Miss Derek

Email
Four Footed Fotos
Bluegrass Pride, ridden by Richard Hamel, wins the Richmond Derby Trial by three-quarters of a length over Tracker on Sunday.

VANCOUVER, British Columbia – Bluegrass Pride ($5.30) rallied from well back to win the $50,000 Richmond Derby Trial at Hastings on Sunday. His strong performance gives trainer Craig MacPherson a strong one-two punch for the Grade 3, $150,000 British Columbia Derby on Sept. 8.

On Saturday, MacPherson was at Northlands Park to saddle Reporting Star, who finished second behind Broadway Empire in the Grade 3, $200,000 Canadian Derby.

With Richard Hamel aboard, Bluegrass Pride bided his time while Modern was being pressed by Go for Guinness and Hopeseeker through a solid half-mile in 46.69 seconds. He started to move into range at the quarter pole and was in full stride while going four wide around the final turn.

Bluegrass Pride took the lead in midstretch and held off the late move by Tracker to win the 1 1/16-mile race by three-quarters of a length. Hopeseeker finished third, a half-length clear of Go for Guinness, who was favored in the six-horse field.

“Once he gets into gear, he has a really long stride,” Hamel said of Bluegrass Pride.

The final time was 1:42.94.

One race earlier, the heavily favored Miss Derek won the $50,000 Hong Kong Jockey Club Handicap for MacPherson and established herself as the clear local favorite for the $100,000 British Columbia Oaks on Sept. 8. She paid $4.40.

Miss Derek came from a stalking position to beat I Think So by 1 1/4 lengths in the 1 1/16-mile race. I Think So set the pace and held on well to finish a half-length in front of Locket.

Enrique Gonzalez was aboard the popular win. The final time was 1.44.17.