Apolltical Chad Gets Second Grade 1 Win in $384,355 Texas Classic Derby
Apolltical Chad (#9), under champion jockey G.R. Carter Jr., races past runner-up Graceful Eagle (#5) in the $384,355 Texas Classic Derby(G1) at Lone Star Park Saturday night.

© Martin Canales / StallioneSearch
Apolltical Chad Gets Second Grade 1 Win in $384,355 Texas Classic Derby

GRAND PRAIRIE, TX—NOVEMBER 11, 2017— Apolltical Chad rolled to his third consecutive win Saturday night when he defeated Graceful Eagle by a neck in the Grade 1 $384,355 Texas Classic Derby on closing night of the Lone Star Park 2017 Quarter Horse meet.

The sorrel gelding broke out under AQHA Racing Champion jockey G.R. Carter, Jr. but was game winner over the 440 yards in :21.525 seconds, a 95-speed index into an 11-mph crosswind.

"I’m glad I come out of retirement because I’ve won this race two years in a row now. The horse looked phenomenal, Carter said after the race. "Wes left him here between the trials and he put on a little weight and he must really like hanging out in Texas, he really blossomed."

TQHA Executive Director Val Clark and TQHA Director of Racing Rob Werstler presents the winning connections of Apollitical Chad the Texas Classic Derby stakes trophy.
© Dustin Orona Photography
The son of leading sire Apollitical Jess ended a drought of off-the-board Grade 1 appearances dating back to the 2016 All American Futurity(G1) when he finished fourth.

"He left the gate really well," Carter continued. "High Plains Perry was right there with me but we made a nice little run to get away from him. He made the jockey look real good."

The 2016 Ruidoso Futurity(G1) winner was sixth in the Ruidoso Derby(G1) this season and eighth in the Rainbow Derby(G1). His current win streak started in the All American Derby(G1) trials on August 20th but he failed to qualify for the $1.36 million final.

Trainer Wesley Giles saddled Nueve Racing's grade 1 gelding to the fourth fastest qualifying time in the Texas Classic Derby trials on October 20th. Tonight's $171,139 winners' purse boosted the sorrel's earnings total to $874,665.

"We’ve had a lot of problems with him eating. I think the layoff and the rest helped and he just started eating and put on about 70 pounds," Giles said. "He’s an exceptional horse," he added.

Weetona Stanley and W.E. Smith bred Apolltical Chad from the Shazoom are Fast Prize Tracy. She is a sister to Grade 1 West Texas Futurity winner Fast Prize Zoom who Giles trained in 2008.

"We’ll take about five months off then maybe head to Oklahoma with him next spring if everything looks good and take it from there," Giles concluded.

Bumped at the start, Graceful Eagle ran the biggest race of her career to finish second and pocket $84,558 for owner Leon Florentino. Jockey Manuel Gutierrez had the riding call for trainer Eusevio Huitron aboard the stakes winning daughter of leading sire One Famous Eagle.

Winner of last year's Texas Classic Juvenile, the bay filly was second in the Firecracker Derby in July then set a new track record when she won the Simulcast Services Stakes at Gillespie over the summer.

Bred in Colorado by Thomas Bradbury, Graceful Eagle won her Classic Derby trial and entered the race off the fifth fastest qualifying time. Out of the Corona Cartel mare Duplicate Check, she has compiled a (12) 6-3-1 record band earned $184,343.

Terry and Irene Stennett's New Mexico-bred Percyjones finished three-quarter back to earn $42,279 for third. Leading trainer Trey Wood conditions the Jesse James Jr gelding with Edwuin Lujan getting the riding call. Benny and Donn Smith bred the year's Zia Derby(RG2) winner from the Dean Miracle mare Maggies Miracle Lx. He has earned $285,151.

Political Mess, Tac My Time, Duponte, Corona Carmelita, Dash Quick Perry and High Plains Perry completed the field. Paint My Pilot was scratched.