Tampa Bay Derby winner Carpe Diem burnished his impressive credentials with a three-length victory in the Grade I, $1-million Toyota Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland to move a step closer to a date with destiny in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands at Churchill Downs on May 2.
Danzig Moon, the fourth-place finisher in the Tampa Bay Derby, rallied for second in the Blue Grass, three lengths behind Carpe Diem.
Owned by WinStar Farm and Stonestreet Stable and trained by Todd Pletcher, Carpe Diem was ridden by Hall of Fame jockey John Velazquez.
Pletcher's only Kentucky Derby triumph came in 2010 with Super Saver, who finished third in that year's Tampa Bay Derby. Street Sense, trained by Carl Nafzger, won the 2007 Tampa Bay Derby before capturing the Run for the Roses.