05/18/2010 11:00PM

Heavenville to head 13 statebreds in derby


BOSSIER CITY, La. - Entries were drawn Wednesday for Saturday's Louisiana Cup Day at Louisiana Downs. A total of six stakes, two starter stakes, and a pair of Louisiana-bred maiden events will offer more than $600,000 in purse money to the state's best. A total of 110 horses were entered for the 10-race program.

One of the most competitive of the events promises to be the 26th renewal of the Louisiana Cup Derby. A large field of 13 will go seven furlongs. The race is headed up by the Steve Asmussen-trained Heavenville, winner of the Crescent City Derby against fellow Louisiana-breds at Fair Grounds in late March. Most recently, Heavenville was unplaced in the Grade 2 Lexington Stakes at Keeneland. Aaron Gryder will be in to handle the riding chores.

Others in the Louisiana Cup Derby include Dynapac, second to Heavenville in the Crescent City and recent allowance winner locally, and the speedy Redsugar, victorious in the $125,000 Premier Prince at Delta Downs in wire-to-wire fashion in early February. The stakes-winning Productive Envoy will return to the main track after a recent allowance score over the Lone Star turf in his last start.

The likely shortest-priced favorite on the afternoon promises to be the venerable Superior Storm. Trained by Richard Jackson and winner of more than $950,000 in her 24-race career, she can reach millionaire status on Saturday if she defeats nine rivals in the $100,000 Louisiana Cup Distaff. Pat Valenzuela has the call to ride.

Snakebite Kit, who suffered his first career defeat in five starts when he finished third in the John Henry Stakes at Evangeline Downs on April 17, returns to the statebred ranks on Saturday when he takes on no fewer than 13 foes in the Louisiana Cup Turf Classic. Trained by Eddie Johnston, Snakebite Kit will be ridden by former Louisiana Downs riding champ John Jacinto, who will journey up from his current base at Evangeline.

An evenly matched group of 11 3-year-old fillies are slated to go seven furlongs in the Louisiana Cup Oaks. Slight favoritism could fall to Sheza Sexy A. P. Trained by Al Stall, she won the Louisiana Jewel and Premier Starlet at Delta Downs over the winter before an unplaced effort against open company in the Fair Grounds Oaks in her most recent start. Valenzuela will be in the saddle.

Zacaroid comes into the Louisiana Cup Sprint in top form after an allowance win and a second-place performance in the Need for Speed Stakes at Evangeline, while Flawless Gold will be the one to catch in the Filly and Mare sprint.