Speed figures are a great tool, but they are not a reliable crutch when it comes to deciphering a race as complicated and unique as the Run for the Roses.
The last two prep races for the Run for the Roses – the Arkansas Derby and Lexington Stakes – will be run on Saturday, leaving handicappers a mere three weeks to make sense of what has been an exhilarating run up to the main event.
If we didn’t see the Kentucky Derby winner last week, then we almost certainly will on Saturday when the Wood Memorial, the Blue Grass Stakes and the Santa Anita Derby lure most of the top guns for the Run for the Roses.
The Group 2 UAE Derby — part of a stellar Dubai World Cup card — and the Grade 1 Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park make for a challenging handicapping challenge, part of which involves getting up early Saturday.
With just six weeks until the Kentucky Derby, give or take a day, most horses being aimed for the race are going to run just once more to try to secure a spot in the starting gates.
The Bob Baffert-trained colt has been spectacular in the first two races of his career, but his lack of seasoning raises questions about whether he’ll be ready for the moving mosh pit that is the Kentucky Derby.
Many bettors didn’t heed clear signals that Good Magic was not primed for a top effort in last weekend’s Fountain of Youth Stakes. They have an opportunity to rebound this weekend by applying the lesson from that defeat.
Just as playwrights use unseen characters to advance the plot, this year’s road to the Triple Crown has been overshadowed by two horses — Good Magic and Bolt d’Oro — whose absence has called into question everything we’ve been watching on stage.
When you use Twitter to filter for a specific niche like horse racing, you begin to receive valuable intelligence without lifting a finger. Best of all, it’s often information you wouldn’t necessarily think to search for.
More points used to determine the starters in the Run for the Roses are on the line starting with Saturday’s Risen Star Stakes (Grade 2) at the Fair Grounds. Horseplayers need to pay close attention to this second round of preps.