October 25, 2020

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Kentucky Derby Spot Plays

May 4, 2019; Louisville, KY, USA; Chris Landeros aboard Bodexpress (21) , Jon Court aboard Long Range Toddy (18) and Luis Saez aboard Maximum Security (7) race into the first turn during the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports ORG XMIT: USATSI-402986 ORIG FILE ID: 20190504_jla_ss1_210.jpg

Kentucky Derby Spot Plays:

Race 2

Horse #5 Idol looks to be ready at first asking for Richard Baltas. Idol is a $375,000 son of Curlin working out much faster than Baltas typically does. The presence of Paco Lopez suggest that they are going to pop this one quick from the gate. I don’t think his competition is too fierce here. In fact, I like the only other first time starter in the race too. Kennedy’s Beau is stariting for 20% FST trainer Kenny Cross. The Horse is working lights out and is bred well for the sprint distance. His Dam has 2 winners from 2 starters. Recommended Ticket: Win 5; Exacta Box 2,5

Race 4

King’s Mischief is interesting at 10-1. He debuted at Ellis park on the turf clsing pretty well to come up second. Now he moves from turf to durt. As the son of Into Mixchief dirt sprinting should be in his blood. He’s coming off a sharp 4F work on August 28th which tells me they are looking  for early speed from the outside gate. Very intersting at price. Small win bet on King’s Mischief.

Race 5

How often do we see mike maker do this…. Make a rock bottom claim and then push the horse to a much higher level. He’s done that again here claiming On a Spree for 25k in June. Now in September he’s sending him to a $100,000 allowance race?! Yea this is such fishy placement from such a fishy trainer. Throw in Tyler Gafflione and a bullet work on August 23rd and you’ve got me hooked. Play On a Spree to win at 7-2.

Race 6

You’re telling me I can get Alex Joon #12 at 10-1 on Saturday? Sign me up. He’s a $250,000 son of Flatter (AP Indy) who last year broke his maiden by 8 ¼ lengths! Clearly he’s had some health issues since then, but look at his work tab. Slow works until the last 2 in August where he fires 2 bullets. Then he gets a a very slow 3f work on September 1st. That’s a workout patter that Steve Asmussen loves to do with his sprinters ready to fire. He’s 14% of layoffs so he doesn’t stuggle in this situation. This field leaves a lot to be desired. You need a chery on top? He was tripple crown nominated. Clearly the connections thought this was a great colt. Now they will try to prove it on derby day. Best Bet of the day. Hopefully we keep the price.

Race 9

Vertical Threat is worth a look in this spot. First of all we get a big jockey upgrade to Tyler Gafflione here. Trainer Richard Baltas exceeds in the 7-8 furlong range. While I’m not a fan, I cant deny that when his horses are romping at lower levels, they tend to still do well in deeper waters. I know this is a big class jump, but this colt has improved its speed figures in every race so far and could be sitting on his best yet. He’s working way faster than Baltas typically likes. The stretch out wont be a problem for him and I could see his price floating up a bit. Take a shot with small win bet on Vertical Threat at 8-1.

Race 12

I like Mia Mischief to upset at a 6-1 price. Serengeti Empress ran one of the most impressive races of the year last out, but I think she is a potential bounce canidate here. She will have some pace pressure, and I think it will be difficult to repat that effort last out. Mia is just a great dirt sprinter plain and simple. She loves churchill downs and lost my just ½ a length last out. I think she can take down the favorites.

The Derby!

To me, Honor AP is the play. Don’t get me wrong, Tiz the Law might be a super horse. But lets assume that he is not for a second. He has maintained his impeccable form for almost a year now. It is incredibly difficult for a young horse to maintain top form like that for long periods of time. They  are bound to have a down race. In fact Tiz the Law’s only loss came on this very track. I think it is a tough ask to come back to the derby after going all out in the Travers. I know he was geared down a the wire, but don’t tell me that race didn’t take anything out of him. You could see him lugging in by the end. I thnk he may be a bit tired after his grueling campaing. Honor AP on the other hand is rested and lgihtly raced. Don’t worry about the loss in the Shared Belief. That race wasn’t the goal. The derby was the goal. Not to mention, Honor AP galloped out past Thousand Words 3 steps after the wire. Mike Smith has riden this horse since he was a maiden. He knows the horse well and knows how to run in the derby even better. AP is bred to run all day and will love the 12 furlong distance. I doubt we get 5-1, but anything above 3-1 is a deal in my book. Take a shot against Tiz on Saturday! Good luck everyone!

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