Favorite fades in Blue Grass Stakes

April 12, 2008 at 8:20 PM

LEXINGTON, Ky., April 12 (UPI) -- Monba finished a neck in front of Cowboy Cal to win the Blue Grass Stakes Saturday, easily getting the best of even-money favorite Pyro.

Pyro, winner of the Louisiana Derby, appeared headed for a favorite's role at the Kentucky Derby until struggling to finish 10th Saturday.

Cowboy Cal had the lead heading into the stretch and engaged in a tremendous duel with Monba before jockey Edgar Prado inched his mount ahead in the closing strides.

Kentucky Bear rallied to finish third.

Monba was coming off a 12th-place finish in the Fountain of Youth Stakes.

In another Kentucky Derby prep race Saturday, Gayego captured the Arkansas Derby. Sent off as the 2-1 favorite, Gayego defeated Z Fortune by three-quarters of a length.

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