HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — Cutting Humor edged Anothertwistafate by a neck to win the $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 leaderboard after not having appeared in the standings previously. The top 20 horses earn berths in the Derby.
Sent off at 2-1 odds, the 3-year-old colt paid $6.60, $3.40 and $2.40 in the Grade 3 stakes.
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 returned $4 and $3 at 7-2 odds in his return to racing 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 leaderboard.
Mucho Gusto, the 4-5 favorite trained by Bob Baffert, was 5 3/4 lengths back in third and paid $2.20 to show.
The colt earned 10 qualifying points to move into 16th on the leaderboard. He had been idle since winning the Robert B. Lewis Stakes on Feb. 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.