News - Preview December  9, 2022

Delta Downs Presents Friday Graded Stakes Doubleheader

Ben Peterson's Lil Longmire will head the 400-yard, $177,045 Firecracker Derby (G3) for sophomores as part of Friday's nine-race program at Delta Downs.

Kira Crook


VINTON, LA–JULY 4, 2022–
Two graded stakes, topped by the 400-yard, $177,045 Firecracker Derby (G3) for sophomores, are part of Friday's nine-race program at Delta Downs. Post time for the first race is set for 6:15 p.m. (CDT).

Ten 3-year-olds are entered back in the Firecracker Derby, topped by Ben Peterson's Lil Longmire, a homebred daughter of A Revenant trained by Heath Taylor. Lil Longmire made her local debut with a 1 1/4-length victory in one of three trials on June 18. Raced at Remington Park last spring, the filly ran second, one length behind winner Political Rose, in the inaugural 400-yard, $279,000 Heritage Place Oaks for 3-year-old fillies.

Lil Longmire drew post 10 and will be ridden by Gilbert Ortiz.

Just Call Me Jess, a sorrel son of One Sweet Jess racing for Lee and Tara Blackwell and Joel Tipton, set the fastest qualifying time with his one-length victory in the second Firecracker Derby trial. Juan Cano trains the Oklahoma-bred gelding, whose record at Delta Downs included a fourth-place finish in last year's 350-yard, $297,000 Firecracker Futurity (G2).

Friday's program also features the 350-yard, $25,000 Develop A Plan Stakes (G3). Seven aged runners are entered in the Develop A Plan, which honors the sport's champion 3-year-old gelding in 1994.

Rogelio Marquez Jr.'s Diane To Be A Hero is the early favorite, as the 4-year-old Valiant Hero stallion will be shortening in distance off of his fourth-place run in the 440-yard, $110,000 Sam Houston Classic Stakes (G2) on June 4. Diane To Be A Hero drew the rail post and will be ridden by J.R. Ramirez for trainer Jesus M. Marquez.

All Delta Downs races can be seen at Q-Racing

Courtesy Ses