By the time Materiality and Upstart hit the top of the stretch on Saturday, the seven other horses in the Florida Derby field were afterthoughts.
It was basically a match race, and Materiality never gave up the lead.
Staying perfect in three career outings, Materiality announced himself as potentially a big contender for the Kentucky Derby with a win for jockey John Velazquez and trainer Todd Pletcher in the $1 million Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park in Hallandale Beach, Fla.
Materiality, a son of Afleet Alex, finished the 11/8 miles in 1 minute, 52.30 seconds and returned $5.60 for the win.
Under the points system used to determine the field for the Kentucky Derby on May 2, Materiality has enough to get into the Run for the Roses. The Florida Derby win was not only worth $600,000 in purse but 100 points in the standings.
Ami's Flatter finished third, and previously unbeaten Itsaknockout was fourth.
Chrome beaten. Prince Bishop pulled away from race favorite California Chrome to win the $10 million Dubai World Cup by 23/4 lengths in Dubai, United Arab Emirates.
Starting from the rail, William Buick rode Prince Bishop to its first victory on dirt.
California Chrome, the U.S. horse of the year, has not won on dirt since the Preakness Stakes. The 4-year-old 2014 Kentucky Derby winner, ridden by Victor Espinoza, was second behind Hokko Tarumae going into the final leg but could not keep pace when Prince Bishop attacked.
The 8-year-old Prince Bishop was bred in Ireland but has been trained by Saeed bin Suroor in the Emirates. He beat the Art Sherman-trained favorite on Meydan Racecourse's new dirt track.
In third place was another American, Lea, who was saddled by William Mott, the U.S trainer who led Cigar to victory in the inaugural Dubai World Cup in 1996.
Louisiana Derby. Jockey Miguel Mena guided co-favorite International Star to a come-from-behind victory in the $750,000 Grade II Louisiana Derby in New Orleans, giving the horse a sweep of all three Kentucky Derby prep races at the Fair Grounds Race Course.
International Star beat Stanford by a neck. His winning time in the 11/8-mile race was 1:50.67. War Story, the other 2-1 co-favorite, ridden by Joe Talamo, finished third.
UAE Derby. Mubtaahij, the favorite in the $2 million UAE Derby, pulled away from the field around the final turn and cruised to an eight-length victory over Maftool. Golden Barows was third.
The overpowering win persuaded the 3-year-old's trainer, Mike de Kock, to give the Kentucky Derby a try. The colt's owner is Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa Al Maktoum.