Bensalem, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Haskell Invitational runner-up Albano is the 2-1 morning line favorite for Monday's $300,000 Smarty Jones Stakes at Parx Racing.
Ten 3-year-olds have been entered for the mile, 70 yard prep race for the $1 million Pennsylvania Derby on Saturday, Sept. 20. This year Kentucky Derby and Preakness champ California Chrome is expected to headline the PA Derby.
Trained by Larry Jones for Brereton Jones, Albano will be ridden by his regular jockey Kerwin Clark from post 3. The colt finished 7 1/4 lengths behind Bayern in the Haskell as an 11-1 longshot.
Albano posted a win this year in the Pegasus at Monmouth Park with seconds in the Lecomte and Risen Star Stakes at Fair Grounds. He was fifth to Vicar's in Trouble in the Louisiana Derby. Albano has earned $508,100 with three wins and three seconds in eight career starts.
The 7-2 second pick is Protonico, trained by Todd Pletcher for International Equities Holding, Inc. The colt will be ridden by Joe Bravo from post 8.
The Smarty Jones will be Protonico's fifth career start with two wins and $79,715. Protonico is coming off a third-place finish in the Curlin Stakes at Saratoga, losing by just a neck to eventual Travers winner V.E. Day.
Almost Famous, the defeated Ohio Derby favorite, is the 9-2 third choice and will break from post 6 with Junior Alvarado coming in to ride.
Trained by Patrick Byrne, Almost Famous was fourth in this year's Holy Bull and 11th in the Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park. The colt, owned by Chuck and Maribeth Sandford, was a badly beaten 11th in the Spiral Stakes but went to Churchill Downs where he won an allowance and finished third in the Matt Winn. He's earned $155,100 with three wins in nine starts.
Here is the field for the Smarty Jones in post position order: Ain't Got Time, Julian Pimentel, 12/1; Classic Giacnroll, Kendrick Carmouche, 12/1; Albano, Kerwin Clark, 2/1; Joint Custody, Trevor McCarthy, 8/1; Grasshoppin, Roberto Alvarado Jr., 20/1; Almost Famous, Junior Alvarado, 9/2; Just Call Kenny, Paco Lopez, 8/1; Protonico, Joe Bravo, 7/2; Saa Mi, Miguel Mena, 20/1 and Lynx, Frankie Pennington, 10-1.
The Smarty Jones has an approximate post time of 4:44 p.m. ET.