10/12/2007 12:00AM

Oklahoma Derby takes shape

EmailGoing Ballistic, who pulled a mild upset last month in the Grade 2 Super Derby, figures to be favored next week in the $300,000 Oklahoma Derby. Nominations for the Oct. 21 race at Remington Park were to close late Friday. Going Ballistic is one of a handful of early probables for the 1o1/8-mile derby, which also is expected to attract Forty Acres.

Strong City is another who is likely to start. A stablemate of Going Ballistic, he was third to Forty Acres in the $100,000 Prelude at Louisiana Downs on Aug. 18. In his most recent start, Strong City closed for fifth in the Super Derby. Following the race it was found he had an abscess in his left front foot.

"We got that taken care of," said Donnie Von Hemel, who trains Strong City and Going Ballistic. "He breezed a few days ago, and we hope to have him ready to go."

Von Hemel said Quincy Hamilton will ride Strong City and Cliff Berry will be aboard Going Ballistic. Going Ballistic is 1 for 1 over the main track at Remington, winning the $100,000 MEC Mile in 2006.

This year's Oklahoma Derby was moved to a Sunday for the first time since 2004. The purse was increased from $250,000.

Also on the derby card are three undercard stakes, and Remington has scheduled three stakes for Saturday night.

The stakes on Saturday are restricted to fillies and mares, while the Sunday stakes are open to both genders.

"We'll have the girls' night out, and the boys can rumble on football Sunday," said Fred Hutton, the racing secretary at Remington.

Remington: D Fine Okie to Ada?

The filly D Fine Okie, who defeated males in the $100,000 Oklahoma Classics Day Classic, could make her next start Saturday night in the $50,000 Ada at Remington, said Von Hemel, who trains her. She is one of several possible stakes starters he will have over the weekend.

Whisper to Me and Midsummer Magic, both recent stakes winners, might run in the $75,000 Remington Park Oaks on Saturday, Von Hemel said. Then next Sunday, Waupaca and Notable Okie are eyeing the $100,000 Remington Green; Cryptographer might go in the $100,000 MEC Mile; and Explosive Okie and Gone Missing are under consideration for the $75,000 Remington Park Sprint.

The three Sunday stakes, plus with the Oklahoma Derby, probably will form an all-stakes pick four, Hutton said. Entries for the Oklahoma Derby card will be taken on Friday.