09/25/2016 10:37PM

Texas Chrome outlasts Sticksstatelydude in Oklahoma Derby

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Dustin Orona Photography
Texas Chrome won his third straight stakes race under C. J. McMahon in the Oklahoma Derby on Sunday.

OKLAHOMA CITY – Texas Chrome won the seventh stakes race of his career in dramatic fashion on Sunday, when he pushed up the rail and outdueled Sticksstatelydude to the wire in the Grade 3, $400,000 Oklahoma Derby at Remington Park. A half-length separated the two in the end, while it was another three lengths back to Fish Trappe Road in third.

The Oklahoma Derby anchored a card of 10 stakes. The program included the $200,000 Remington Park Oaks won by Unbridled Mo.

Texas Chrome ($6.60) broke from the rail and settled off the pace as Way Striking struck the front after the start and took the field through fractions of 22.95 seconds for the opening quarter and 47.25 for the half mile. Sticksstatelydude took over through six furlongs in 1:11.69, then battled when engaged by Texas Chrome. The winner covered 1 1/8 miles on a track rated good in 1:48.94.

“I used the one hole to my advantage and saved as much ground as I could,” winning rider C.J. McMahon said.

J.R. Caldwell trains Texas Chrome, who was winning his second straight Grade 3 race behind the $400,000 Super Derby at Louisiana Downs on Sept. 10. He said the Remington Park-based horse had some things in his favor despite the two-week turnaround into the Oklahoma Derby.

“There were a couple of key things,” he said. “No. 1, it’s his home track. No. 2, he’s battle-tested.”

Caldwell noted earlier this year that Texas Chrome shipped to Churchill Downs and ran third to Gun Runner in the Grade 3 Matt Winn, and also traveled to Prairie Meadows for the Grade 3 Iowa Derby and was second to American Freedom. Overall, Texas Chrome has won eight of 13 starts. He earned $240,000 in the Oklahoma Derby to push his career earnings to $842,462.

Danny Keene, who owns Texas Chrome, said he is impressed by the fight he has seen in Texas Chrome, whom he purchased as a yearling for $10,000.

Keene and Caldwell said next-race plans are to be determined for Texas Chrome, but both said he would be considered for the $1 million Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile on Nov. 4 at Santa Anita.

Texas Chrome could be one of two horses the owner-trainer team pre-enters in the Breeders’ Cup. Keene and Caldwell said multiple stakes winner Bling On The Music could come under consideration for the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies off her recent third-place finish in the Grade 2 Pocahontas. 

Texas Chrome is a son of Grasshopper.

Remington handled more than $2.3 million on its Oklahoma Derby Day card Sunday, according to track spokesman Dale Day.