Owner Allen Paulson said Tuesday that his champion filly, Eliza, will run against males for the first time in the Santa Anita Derby on April 3.
One of Paulson's other top 3-year-olds, Corby, will leave California and run in the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland on April 10.
"Eliza wasn't nominated for the Blue Grass, so that's one of the reasons she'll stay at Santa Anita," Paulson said. "We'll take a look at the results of those two races and determine whether both horses run in the Kentucky Derby (May 1) or if only Corby would run in the Derby and Eliza in the Kentucky Oaks (for fillies only) the day before the Derby."
Paulson said that Pat Valenzuela will ride Eliza in the Santa Anita Derby "if he's available." Valenzuela, who has sat out more than 20% of the current Santa Anita meeting because of injury, sickness and stewards' suspensions, was fired last weekend as Paulson's contract jockey.
"Pat will still ride some of my horses," Paulson said.
"But we're also going to use other jockeys. Chris McCarron, who has already won with Corby, is a possibility to continue riding that horse."