Updated on 09/16/2011 7:00AM

Shippers versus 'Bunk' in Derby


OLDSMAR, Fla. - The undefeated Bunk N Ted will face the stiffest test of his career on Sunday when he takes on a host of dangerous south Florida ship-ins topped by Tropical Park Derby winner Political Attack in the $200,000 .

In recent years such notables as Impeachment, Wheelaway, and Menifee have run in the Tampa Bay Derby en route to good showings in the Triple Crown, prompting the grading committee to reinstate the race's Grade 3 status this year.

Pat Day has the mount aboard Bunk N Ted, who overcame problems to take the Sam F. Davis over a sloppy track here for his third win. A gelding, Bunk N Ted has been plagued by quarter cracks in recent weeks but apparently is well enough to run in the 1 1/16-mile Derby.

John Hennig, Political Attack's trainer, has said he is not pointing for the Kentucky Derby at this time. Nevertheless, Political Attack comes into Sunday's race with a strong record - he is 3 for 6 - including a front-running mild upset of the Tropical Park Derby.

Showmeitall, winner of the Grade 2 Hutcheson and second here in the Inaugural Stakes earlier in the meet, should be a pace factor under Jorge Chavez. Equality, who wiped out an allowance field by more than 16 lengths in his last start, looks like an intriguing dark horse in what shapes up as one of the most competitive fields for the Derby in recent years.

The co-feature on the 13-race card will be the Grade 3 Florida Oaks. French Satin, who set the pace to midstretch in the Grade 2 Davona Dale, tops a field of 11 3-year-old fillies in the wide-open race.

First Again, who will be making her first start since winning the Polly Drummond Stakes at Delaware Park last fall, and the improving Aly Quatorze, who was supplemented to the Oaks by trainer Nick Zito after winning two straight at Gulfstream Park, top the challengers to French Satin.

o Step With Style, who finished less than a length behind favored Snow Dance in the Grade 2 Suwanee River Handicap last time out, heads a field of 12 entered for the $100,000 Hillsborough Stakes for fillies and mares at 1 1/16 miles on the turf. The Hillsborough will be run as the 10th race.

Special Derby day first post is noon.

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