Saturday, May 4, 2013

It's Time for KD 139

Magnificent Churchill Downs beckons many a handicapper, amateur and pro alike, on this first Saturday in May for a chance to take a share of the wagering pool in America's greatest horse race, The Kentucky Derby. 

Churchill Downs Race 11 {Kentucky Derby 139~G1~1 1/4 mile~3 year old~Stakes}

There will be a field of 19 handsome colts walking onto the track with the huge Churchill Downs crowd cheering on their favorites.  #1 Black Onyx has scratched due to an ankle chip.  It should be a great Stakes Saturday.


Weather:  According to there is a 40% chance of showers likely to begin around 16:00.  That chance increases to 50% around 18:00.  The KD 139 is scheduled to go off at 18:24 (6:24 pm EDT)  Depending on the strength of that rain the track may come up muddy, sloppy, or good.  This could be a key handicapping data point.  Who are the mudders in the race?

Pace:  Expect it to be strong.  There are several in the field who are speedsters or definitely like to be forwardly placed.  #2 Oxbow can be considered a speedy presser. Ditto for #8 Goldencents.  Both #7 Giant Finish and #11 Lines of Battle have a fondness for pressing the pace.  Another speedster / presser is #13 Falling Sky.  One of the Favorites, #14 Verrazano, likes to sit close to the pace.  Two with tactical speed who like to get a feel on how the pace develops are #17 Will Take Charge and #20 Vyjack.  If the pace is modest any one of these fellas could win it.  The balance of the field are trackers or closers or any combination in between.  Should the pace become heated, count on one of the horses that relish coming from off the pace to wear the roses.

Random Thoughts:  Not one of these fine colts has gone this distance of a mile and a quarter (1 1/4 mile).  The only horse that has raced close to it was #11 Lines of Battle, winning convincingly, the UAE Derby on a Tapeta (synthetic) surface at a distance of 1 3/16 mile.  All have had tremendous workouts leading up to this years Derby.  Among the more notable are #12 Its My Lucky Day with a strengthening three peaking works,  #13 Falling Sky with two wickedly good bullet works, and #17 Will Take Charge with four endurance peaking works.  Speed figures are relatively comparable.  Triple digit Beyer scores are indicative of a superior horse.  Those that have them include; #8 Goldencents (105), #16 Verrazano (105), #12 Its My Lucky Day (104), #3 Revolutionary (102) and for good measure, #11 Lines of Battle established a 111 Racing Post rating for his win in the UAE Derby.  The entire field of three year olds have been well conditioned by their trainers and should see more improvement in their racing career.

The Picks

#16 Orb (Rosario / McGaughey) is the morning line favorite.  He has continued to improve with virtually every race he has run holding the longest race progression of six.  This stellar son of Malibu Moon out of the Lady Liberty mare has the second highest last out speed number and has put in three superb peaking workouts.  This colt is a consistent tracker/closers who is quite capable of running down this field with a good trip.
$2 WIN / $3 PLACE / $5 SHOW.

#5 Normandy Invasion (Castellano / C. Brown) will challenge mightily with a couple of very good improving last out speed numbers, a two race progression, and two exciting workouts.  This son of Tapit out of the mare Boston Lady will be running late.  Should their be a grueling pace, expect him to launch a ferocious kick
$2 PLACE / $3 SHOW.

#3 Revolutionary (Borel / Pletcher) has the distinct advantage of having the Prince of Churchill riding him.  Calvin Borel has already won three Kentucky Derby's in this century.  This son of War Pass out of the mare, Runup The Colors, has been well primed with two excellent last out speed numbers, a two race progression, and two robust workouts. His tracking/closing running style will suit him well.
$2 SHOW.

#11 Lines of Battle (Moore / O'Brien) should contend favourably among this talented field.  He holds a great last out Racing Post rating and is in the midst of a two race progression.  This son of War Front and mare, Black Speck, has raced well in Ireland and Great Britain.  Expect this dark brown colt to stay close to the leaders biding his time for a strike through the turn.
$2 SHOW.

There is no 10 CENT Superfecta offered on Derby Day.  However we will go with the one dollar minimum.  After all it is the Derby.
#16 Orb / #5 Normandy Invasion / #3 Revolutionary / #11 Lines of Battle.

The Pro's Picks

There are many great professional handicappers across the country.  Here are a few of the best of the best and their respective picks for Kentucky Derby 139.
Steve Crist ( is the don of handicappers and has weighed in with his Derby pick, #9 Overanalyze.  The esteemed Andrew Beyer (Washington Post Writers Group) who literally wrote the book on speed, has selected #8 GoldencentsJill Byrne, one of the finest Churchill Downs handicappers has chosen #3 Revolutionary.  The always insightful and crafty minded, Theresa Genero ( has also selected #3 Revolutionary.  Our favorite handicapping pros at, Dan Illman and Mike Beer have made their picks of #8 Goldencents and #5 Normandy Invasion, respectively.

There should be no doubt that the 2013 Kentucky Derby will be one of the best in this decade.  The new Derby point system has produced a highly talented field with any one of these competitive colts capable of making their way into the winners circle.

Friday's Results
Churchill Downs R11.  Kentucky Oaks--G1.  Our first pick, Dreaming of Julia, finished a disappointing 4th.  Our second pick, Unlimited Budget, finished 3rd for show money of $3.80.  Our third pick, Seaneen Girl, finished 9th.
We abandoned the Superfecta as CDI already changed over to the minimum $1 offering.  Nonetheless the Superfecta went 6-3-4-8.
Bankroll continues a downward trend falling to $12.85.  We will supplement with an additional twelve bucks.  Hello, its Derby Day. 

No comments:

Post a Comment