Girvin has been quite the horse for trainer Joe Sharp, who once again shouted himself hoarse Saturday, April 1 as he cheered his star home in the $1 million G1 Twinspires.com Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
Longshot Hotfoot, who is also trained by Sharp, broke sharply from the gate and hustled to the lead from the beginning, speeding through the first quarter in :23.46 and the half in :47.00 while Girvin ran behind him in fifth with runner-up Patch. Hotfoot began to fade at the head of the lane, just in time for Local Hero to make a move – as well as Girvin and jockey Brian Hernandez, Jr. Local Hero gained the lead with a furlong to go but Girvin was not to be denied. The lightly raced colt took command to pull clear in the final strides toward the wire, stopping the clock in 1:49.77.
The victory gave Girvin 100 points to add to his 50 from the Risen Star in February. He currently heads the leaderboard.
“He’s such a talented horse, and he puts a lot of confidence in you,” said Hernandez, who also rides leading contender McCraken. “He makes you have confidence in him and he has enough athletic ability that he can put me in a good spot. When I saw Local Hero settle the way he did (in third) I wanted to give (Girvin) a target. Turning for home, he got to swapping leads back and forth some but he’s going to improve off of this. It’s great to win this race, for sure.”
Girvin has three wins from four starts for owner Brad Grady and boosted his earnings to $874,400.
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