03/19/2015 4:16PM

Lord Nelson will skip Sunland Park Derby

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Benoit & Associates
Lord Nelson will not ship to New Mexico for Sunday's Sunland Park Derby because trainer Bob Baffert feels he isn't sharp enough to race right now.

ARCADIA, Calif. - Lord Nelson, fourth in the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita on March 7, will skip the $800,000 Sunland Park Derby in New Mexico on Sunday, trainer Bob Baffert said Thursday.

Baffert said Lord Nelson will be held out of the Grade 3 Sunland Park Derby in favor of a stakes in coming weeks, but did not name an alternative race. He said he made the decision on Thursday morning after returning from a 2-year-olds in-training sale in Florida earlier in the week.

“He’s okay,”  Baffert said. “I won’t send him. I entered him if he’d bounced back, but he’s not as sharp as I want him to be. We’ll find something else for him.”€

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Lord Nelson has won 3 of 6 starts and earned $273,571. He has won two sprint stakes at Santa Anita - the Speakeasy Stakes at six furlongs last October and the Grade 2 San Vicente Stakes at seven furlongs on Feb. 1.

Lord Nelson, owned by Peachtree Stable, was beaten 5 1/4 lengths by stablemate Dortmund in the San Felipe Stakes at 1 1/16 miles.

Thursday, the Baffert-trained One Lucky Dane won his 3-year-old debut in a first-level optional $80,000 claimer at a mile. Ridden by Rafael Bejarano, One Lucky Dane ($2.80) led throughout and pulled away from four rivals to win by 9 3/4 lengths in 1:35.48. Harmonic closed from last to finish second.

Owned by Michael Lund Petersen, One Lucky Dane was sixth in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita last November. The optional claimer was One Lucky Dane’s first victory against winners, and his fifth career start.

“We were hoping he’d do something like that,”€Baffert said. “We gave him time off after the Breeders’ Cup. He had little things, nothing major.”€

Baffert did not state a race goal for One Lucky Dane, a colt by Lookin at Lucky who is nominated for the Triple Crown.