08/03/2013 6:22PM

Louisiana Downs: Holiday Mischief springs Prelude surprise to earn Super Derby berth

Hodge Photography/Lou Hodges Jr.
Holiday Mischief pays $35.40 to win after holding off heavy favorite Sunbean by a head in the Prelude.

Holiday Mischief caught 1-2 favorite Sunbean on the wire to win the $100,000 Prelude at Louisiana Downs on Saturday, and earn a fees-paid berth into next month’s Grade 2, $500,000 Super Derby. Holiday Mischief won by a head, while Sunbean finished 6 3/4 lengths in front of third-place finisher Runaway Stephen. 

The Prelude was the richest of four stakes worth a cumulative $250,000 on the program. All of the races were preps for stakes on Super Derby Day, which is Sept. 7.

Holiday Mischief ($35.40) broke well from his rail post and secured his position along the fence, racing in third as Sunbean set an uncontested pace of 24.31 seconds for the opening quarter, 48.36 for the half-mile, and 1:12.54 for six furlongs. Holiday Mischief moved up on the final turn, took after the leader under jockey Cliff Berry, and was determined to the wire. He covered 1 1/16 miles on a fast track in 1:44.33.

“I thought he ran big,” said Joe Offolter, who co-owns and trains Holiday Mischief. “He had a couple of trips where he got stopped at the quarter pole, but today, he got through.

“We’ll see how the next race comes up, and how he comes back. If he’s on top of his game, we’ve got a full berth into the Super Derby. If he’s doing as good as he is now, we’ll probably bring him back.”

Holiday Mischief invaded from Remington Park. Earlier this year, he was second in the $50,000 Texas Heritage at Sam Houston, a race won by Departing, who captured the West Virginia Derby on Saturday for trainer Al Stall Jr., who has a division of horses at Louisiana Downs.

Holiday Mischief earned $60,000 for his win, his third career victory from 11 starts. He has now earned $117,810. Holiday Mischief is a son of Into Mischief, and is co-owned by Carter Thoroughbreds.

* Redgrass Cat ($12.40) shot between horses late to win her maiden in the $50,000 Donnie Wilhite Memorial for 2-year-old fillies. She was up for a neck win over Thegirlinthatsong, while it was another 1 1/2 lengths back in third to Nevada Deputy. Redgrass Cat covered the 7 1/2 furlongs on firm turf in 1:30.68. Lindey Wade was aboard for Paul Rigali Jr. and trainer Allen Milligan.

* Got Shades ($8.60) ran down the leaders in the $50,000 Sunny’s Halo to win his maiden in the 7 1/2-furlong turf race for 2-year-olds. Got Shades was a 3 3/4-length winner over Da House, while it was another 1 3/4 lengths back in third to In the Backseat. Roman Chapa rode Got Shades, who covered the distance in 1:29.77. Danny Pish trains the winner for Dennis E. Foster.

* Pure Tactics ($9) became a stakes winner in the $50,000 Barksdale after he got through on the final turn and went on with authority for a 3 3/4-length score. Cheyenne Pass finished second, a half-length in front of third-place finisher Heavenville. Jamie Theriot was aboard Pure Tactics, who covered the mile on turf in a course-record time of 1:34.14. The horse is owned by his trainer, Morris Nicks.