HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — Cutting Humor edged Anothertwistafate by a neck to win the US$800,000 Sunland Derby and enter the picture for the Kentucky Derby.
Ridden by John Velazquez, Cutting Humor ran 1 1/8 miles in a track-record 1:46.94 on Sunday at Sunland Park.
The colt earned 50 qualifying points for the first Saturday in May, putting him fifth on the Derby leader board after not having appeared in the standings previously. The top 20 horses earn berths in the Derby.
Cutting Humor's win gives trainer Todd Pletcher another Derby candidate. Spinoff, second in the Louisiana Derby on Saturday, is his other possibility for the May 4 race.
Anothertwistafate was returning on dirt for the first time since his career debut in November at Santa Anita. He earned 20 qualifying points and is 12th on the leader board.
Mucho Gusto, the 4-5 favourite trained by Bob Baffert, was 5 3/4 lengths back.
The colt earned 10 qualifying points to move into 16th on the leader board. He had been idle since winning the Robert B Lewis Stakes on February 2 at Santa Anita, where live racing has been shut down since March 5 after the deaths of 22 horses.
Baffert has three horses in the top 20, including Game Winner and Improbable.
Wicked Indeed finished fourth and earned five points.