02/15/2013 2:11PM

Hialeah: Carverson tops South Florida Quarter Horse Derby


Fastest qualifier Carverson heads a group of 10 3-year-olds chasing a $100,000 purse in Sunday’s South Florida Quarter Horse Derby at Hialeah Park.

The 440-yard derby is the richest of four stakes on a 10-race card on closing day that includes the $75,000 Hialeah Invitational at 440 yards, the $25,000 Sailfish at 1,000 yards, and the $20,000 Roble Ro Jo Bonus Challenge at 300 yards.

Carverson, a gray Oklahoma-bred colt trained by Rogelio Martinez, won his 440-yard trial on Jan. 26 with a time of 21.75 seconds for his second win in five lifetime starts. Earlier at the meet, Carverson won a 400-yard trial for the Hialeah Laddie Futurity, but stumbled coming out of the gate and finished fourth in the finals.

The second and third fastest qualifiers are both fillies. Mi Angela, a half-sister to leading sires Pyc Paint Your Wagon and Ivory James, followed up her maiden win Jan. 12 with a runner-up finish to Carverson in 21.912 seconds. The filly Panther Speed outran her 16-1 odds and improved to 2 for 3 lifetime when she upset 8-5 favorite James On the Run by a neck in the derby trials with the third fastest qualifying time of 21.914.

James On the Run, a Texas-bred gelding from the barn of the meet’s leading trainer, Brandon Muniz, will get a rider change for Sunday’s race after qualifying with a time of 21.94. Oscar Rincon comes in from Sunland Park to accept the mount. In his previous trip to Hialeah last month, Rincon won stakes with his only two mounts.

◗ The co-featured Invitational field features the 5-year-old gelding Joltin Jess, easy winner of the 440-yard Sawgrass on Feb. 3, and 4-year-old gelding Bps Jumpin Frisco, who tries a longer distance after winning stakes going 220