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Thread: The 136th Running for the Roses

  1. #271
    old school santasutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Didnt have Danza on any of my tickies.

    Quote Originally Posted by MotorAve View Post
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  2. #272
    Pedley Rocks JustSteve's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Love the story of the dumbass owners. $10,000 horse, turned down $6 mil for a 51% stake in the horse a few races ago. Couple no names from the state of ca shutting down the Baffert's and other big names in the sport.

  3. #273
    old school santasutt's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Just watched the replay again. Commanding Curve was closing like a mofo.

    If this were the Belmont, who knows?
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  4. #274
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by santasutt View Post
    Just watched the replay again. Commanding Curve was closing like a mofo.

    If this were the Belmont, who knows?
    Bingo.

  5. #275

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by bug on your lip View Post
    there is going to be a suicide pace up front...
    Nope.
    I have been to concerts. I will go to concerts in the future.

  6. #276

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by santasutt View Post
    Just watched the replay again. Commanding Curve was closing like a mofo.

    If this were the Belmont, who knows?
    If my aunt had balls, she'd be my uncle. Best horse won.
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  7. #277

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    i can't believe how effin slow they were going.. When they pulled a slow 1st Call time i knew the race was already over..
    This was gift wrapped for California Chrome.

    Even with no pace and Churchill favoring front speed all day shows how fast Commanding Curve was actually working..

    Also if you go back and watch Danza, at some point the #9 horse just slams the fuck into him.. one of the hardest collisions i've ever seen.. i still can't believe he took 3rd..
    amazing


    Watch the speed figures of the Preakness contenders to see what kind of pace might be set there..

    But 1 thing is for certain, California Chrome is NOT bred for the Belmont distance.. it's not even close..

    Some closer from the Derby, who couldn't close against the track's speed bias, will skip the Preakness & then come win the Belmont at a big price.
    Quote Originally Posted by RotationSlimWang View Post
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  8. #278
    old school fiopadp7791's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Guys,

    I'm kinda salty. I had a bunch of bombs (longshots) in exactas and trifectas with Cali Chrome, but not Commanding Curve. So I got notta. Including a late pick 3/4 that went down in flames in Churchill's last race, that was still paying lovely even with wins by Wise Dan and California Chrome.

    I do kinda disagree with the sentiment that Commanding Curve would beat CC in the Belmont. I mean I get what you guys are saying, that if Commanding Curve has a little more room he could've run Chrome down. But 2 things- and I say thins not cashing a ticket so I have no built in bias for this. I think Victor Espinoza "throttled down" Chrome towards the end of the race. As in he knew he had it won and wasn't working him all the way to the wire.

    As for the Belmont, it almost always favors horses that are close to the lead. You'd think with the added distance it wouldn't, but the front-end horses usually plod through the early parts of the race, and it gives them enough energy to sustain their runs all the way to the finish. But credit where credit is due, this happened with Commanding Curve. But I'd like to see a repeat effort before I believe. Really depends on how much pace pressure will be in the next race he goes in-

    Quote Originally Posted by fiopadp7791 View Post

    Commanding Curve
    Post Position #17
    Morning Line: 50-1

    Commanding Curve was a very distant 3rd in this race, but had such a horrible start that he probably lost any chance to win right there.
    POSITIVES:
    -3 starts at Churchill downs, 3 top 3 finishes (but against maidens).
    -Only 1 career start at less than a mile, so he should be able to handle the Derby distance
    -Has only run on dirt
    -After that bad start, he still closed to get 3rd. Should be running hard late
    -Comparison could be made to 2nd-place finisher Golden Soul in last year's Kentucky Derby: Golden Soul came into the Derby off a 4th place finish in the Louisiana Derby, where he missed the start. Was really far back, and closed to get 4th place. So everyone thought Golden Soul was a hopeless longshot in the Kentucky Derby. He got 2nd. They even had the same trainer lol. A lot of comparisons between Golden Soul and Commanding Curve?
    -Derby will be his 3rd start of the year, so he should be sitting on his peak effort.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  9. #279
    old school fiopadp7791's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    As for the Preakness, there should be a good amount of pace in there. Because the speedy Social Inclusion, who got 3rd in the Wood Memorial to Samraat and Wicked Strong will be in there. Horse is a balls-to-the-wall speed horse who missed the break pretty bad in the Wood, had to run widest around the first and 2nd turns while getting to the lead, buried the leader on the final turn while setting a pretty decent pace. Wicked Strong blew past him, and Samraat really had to grind to get past him. There was a lot of hype surrounding Social Inclusion going into the Wood, and was the favorite in the race. I was against him, but he won me over with that monster effort (because of all the trouble he had early in the race). If things went more cleanly for him at the start, he would've been in the Derby, probably would've set the pace, and wouldn't have crapped out nearly as quick as say Uncle Sigh would have.

    But there are 2 others he'll probably have to earn it from- One is Pablo del Monte, that decided last-minute to not enter in the Derby as horse #21 (after Hoppertunity scratched). If he repeats his Bluegrass effort, he'll be on/close to the lead again.

    Another horse, who I absolutely would've played in the Derby before he scratched out with a fever last weekend-
    Ring Weekend. Ring Weekend won the Tampa Bay Derby running them of their feet in the Tama Bay Derby. Trainer Graham Motion experimented with him in a minor stakes race in early April as his final Derby tune-up (because he already qualified for the KY Derby with the Tampa win). They tried seeing if he was capable of stalking and holding him back. All he did in that race was get in a tug-o-war with his jockey because he wanted to run on the front. He got 2nd, but it was really just a paid workout and an experiment to see if he could be held back. But I think he's got some Cali Chrome in him, that he doesn't need the lead necessarily, he just runs. If his run puts him at the front, ok. If it puts him in a stalking or pressing spot right off the lead, ok. He'll be at huge odds and he'll be on all my tickets in either the Preakness or Belmont.

    Speaking off Hoppertunity, he won't race until later in the year due to surgery
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 05-05-2014 at 02:39 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  10. #280
    Banned marooko's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by grichsgang View Post
    If my aunt had balls, she'd be my uncle. Best horse won.
    Hahaha. Love this.

    Check out Marvel's "What if..." series.

  11. #281
    old school fiopadp7791's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Preakness Past Performances (free) if you want them...
    http://www.brisnet.com/php/bw_pdf_vi...param3=1933440

    I think I'm gonna go California Chrome with Ring Weekend in various tri boxes, pick 3s and pick 4s. Was gonna play Ring Weekend in the Derby before he scratched. So gonna stick with him here.

    Als in the field is the freakishly fast Social Inclusion. Just missed making the Derby field, but I question how far he can carry his speed. There's a lot of front-running types in the Preakness, but he's the speed of the speed.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  12. #282

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    track is favoring the class speed..

    i am predicting this finish:

    California Chrome > Social Inclusion > Bayern > Dynamic Impact
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  13. #283
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Hey Ron, did you kill them if they didn't perform? They don't trip too much about that down there, happens all the time....right?

  14. #284
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    So today is the day that California Chrome goes for the Triple Crown in the Belmont. He's the best horse, but history is against him. Smarty Jones was the best, I'l have Another was the best, and plenty of others since Affirmed were at least debatably the best horse, but yet they lost.

    So I'm cheering for him to do it. But... it'll be pretty much meaningless for the sport (or getting any good long-term publicity from his achievement) if he's retired right after the race. The owners of the horse claim that they will keep running him, even into his 4 year-old season (after Jan 1). But I think that's only the case because they haven't received a good breeding offer yet. If he wins, the offers will start pouring in. And they'll be lucrative. So I hope they're being truthful and keep him in training after the Belmont. But it doesn't mean much if he's retired soon after.

    With that being said, I have to work this afternoon, so I'm sitting on the side lines today. I hope he wins, but it's kinda a "believe it when I see it" thing for me. And I won't be able to watch it live, so I guess I'll catch the replay.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  15. #285
    Member Grandma's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    This country needs to get its priorities straight and start paying attention to F1 over this stupid shit. I'd rather watch competitive shitting than getting dick teased for 2 hours just to watch some puerto rican dwarves race in a single circle for a minute and a half. Either make it an endurance race where the last horse to escape fatal exhaustion is the winner or fuck right off.

  16. #286

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    If they watch F1, then all its going to be is the racers wives on the screen for the last hour of the race.

  17. #287
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    So I finally watched the replay of the Belmont (I was at work, so I didn't see the race live). California Chrome hung. I think that's really all there was to it. He ran 3 races in 5 weeks (usually in that amount of time a top graded-stakes horse will run once, maybe twice in that time). Combo that with asking him to go a mile and a half, where he's outrun his pedigree in every race thus far... he was just tired. He hung for that reason. You can maybe put a little blame on Victor Espinoza for deciding to take him wide instead of waiting for something to open up down on the rail, but I don't think staying inside wins that race for him either.

    What I saw today still makes me believe that at 1 1/4 miles- the distance of the Travers (the last huge 3 year old only stakes race on Labor Day weekend), the Pacific Classic at Del Mar and the Breeders Cup Classic, that he's as good as anyone age 3 or older. He'll rebound from this, and hopefully if his connections don't retire him, that we got a great 2nd half of the year to come. Valiant effort California Chrome. You'll rebound from this.
    If y'all fresh to death, then I'm deceased... -Kanye West
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  18. #288
    old school fiopadp7791's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by Grandma View Post
    This country needs to get its priorities straight and start paying attention to F1 over this stupid shit. I'd rather watch competitive shitting than getting dick teased for 2 hours just to watch some puerto rican dwarves race in a single circle for a minute and a half. Either make it an endurance race where the last horse to escape fatal exhaustion is the winner or fuck right off.
    well hold on-

    First, horse racing is so dead in this country, that even with a lack of exposure for Formula 1, there's way more coverage of that than there is for horse racing lol. You can still see every race at odd hours on NBC Sports network. Also, casual race fan knows who Michael Schumacher is. Before the Kentucky Derby, casual horse racing fan would probably ask if Smarty Jones is running in the race again this year. Or so the ladies can see who's wearing what fancy hat.

    Also, the reason most people watch horse racing, is due to the wagering aspect that goes with it. As a hardcore fan, I can watch these major graded stakes races without a betting interest in it. But most of the time, like everyone else, I'm betting on the races I'm watching.

    I can't watch auto racing, because I get bored watching cars drive around in circles. It would probably be the same for most people regarding horse racing if they weren't betting on the races.

    For football, bball, baseball, I can watch those sports without betting on them. Auto racing I can't.

    Frankly, unless you took the stand that California Chrome wouldn't finish in the top 3 today, the Belmont was actually a horrible betting race (because if CC finished in the top 3, all the payouts get really diluted). But the biggest achievement in the sport is winning all three races of the triple crown. So that's what all the "cock teasing" was about today.
    If y'all fresh to death, then I'm deceased... -Kanye West
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  19. #289

    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by fiopadp7791 View Post
    First, horse racing is so dead in this country.
    I happened to goto Santa Anita recently(haven't been in years) and was shocked to see how many young people were there all decked out in big hats,white suits, funny mustaches etc. I've seen that at Del Mar but never Santa Anita. This must mean that going to the track is a new hipster thing.

  20. #290
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    10917915_10155338242850720_7446486183543421823_o.jpg



    Yesterday in Dubai

    Derby beginners guide/preview coming soon...
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  21. #291
    old school fiopadp7791's Avatar
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    5/2/15 (CD): Kentucky Derby (10f)
    1 Ocho Ocho Ocho (Cassidy/Trujillo) 50-1
    2 Carpe Diem (Pletcher/Velazquez) 8-1
    3 Materiality (Pletcher/Castellano) 12-1
    4 Tencendur (Weaver/Franco) 30-1
    5 Danzig Moon (Casse/Leparoux) 30-1
    6 Mubtaahij (de Kock/Soumillon) 20-1
    7 El Kabeir Scratched
    8 Dortmund (Baffert/Garcia) 3-1
    9 Bolo (Gaines/Bejarano) 30-1
    10 Firing Line (Callaghan/Stevens) 12-1
    -----Stanford scratched. All horses move inside one gate slot, but for betting the numbers stay the same (12-21, no #11 now)-----
    12 International Star Scratched
    13 It'saknockout (Pletcher/Saez) 30-1
    14 Keen Ice (Romans/Desormeaux) 50-1
    15 Frosted (McLaughlin/Rosario) 15-1
    16 War Story (Amoss/Talamo) 50-1
    17 Mr. Z (Lukas/Vazquez) 50-1
    18 American Pharoah (Baffert/Espinoza) 5-2
    19 Upstart (Violette/Ortiz) 15-1
    20 Far Right (Moquett/Smith) 30-1
    21 Frammento (Zito)
    Hi guys... The Derby is this Saturday (5/2). If it's just a fun, casual day where you drink Mint Juleps, and pick the horse with a funny name or your favorite number, ok. But I'll give you the scoop, pros/cons, positives/negatives on each horse in the Derby field so you can make a more educated decision on who you'd like to bet on/cheer for in the Derby.

    I'd like to think I actually know what I'm talking about in terms of horse racing in general. But as far as the Kentucky Derby is concerned, I'm terrible at picking winners and more importantly cashing winning tickets on it. I'm pretty much cursed. So the following breakdown is intended to be a fairly unbiased, simplified description for each horse, so you can make up your own mind on who you'd like to bet on/cheer for the Derby. Because the last thing you wanna do is use my crummy picks lol. You'll get Youtube clips of the major preps they've raced in, so you can see how they've run in a given race to give you a general idea of things.

    If you're a beginner, I'm not trying to throw too much jargon/weird terminology at you. I'm trying to make the descriptions so you can easily understand what the heck I'm talking about. If you have any questions about anything I've posted, feel free to post a question/comment or message me. Same for if you've never bet on a horse race before. I can help guide you through your options for that as well.

    THE BASICS- There will be 20 horses in the race, which can make it a complete crap-shoot (none have ever raced against more than 14 before, and even that many is rare). It's always for 3 year-olds only. It's at Churchill Downs in Louisville, KY. The race distance is a mile and a quarter, and the longest any of the entrants have run up to this point in their young careers. So not only are you dealing with a 20-horse traffic jam, but you're also unsure if they can handle running that far. A lot can't.

    The 20-horse field is determined by designated Derby Prep races held in the months before the Derby. But most horses qualify for the race in March and early April. The other big "unknown" going into these races- A lot of these horses haven't run against each other. The Derby prep races happen everywhere from Florida to New York to Louisiana to California to Dubai.... yes... Dubai.

    The prep races have been "top-heavy" this year- where an astonishing amount of betting favorites in each prep race have taken care of business and won the prep. But those horses for the most part haven't raced against each other yet. So there's still wide speculation on who the best of the best is. But in the past 2 Derbies, there has been a huge longshot that has finished in the top 2. So even if a horse had been easily beaten in a given Derby prep, this is seriously the race where anything can happen.

    If you know how to read a past-performance guide, here's a very preliminary one from Brisnet which lists all 20 of the Derby contenders + Alternates
    http://www.brisnet.com/brisnet_promo...ckyDerby15.pdf
    If you're a beginner that doesn't know how to read these, no sweat. That's what the following posts are here for. To give you basic, yet more in-depth analysis of each horse. So as I said, you can make up your own mind.

    The following posts will give analysis of each horse grouped by the prep race they ran in as opposed to going 1-20. So it's easier to list the horses that have run in each major prep, and give the breakdown from there. You'll see what I mean in the following posts. But I'll also have a link for each horse if you're looking for a description of one specifically.

    This list above shows the horses arranged by post position and their morning line odds. Morning line odds aren't what their actual odds will be on Saturday. But they're used to give you an idea of what their odds will be for the race. Some of the horses, especially the longshots, might end up getting a lot more betting support than their morning line suggests. And others might get way less. But overall, it's just to give you an idea of what their odds could be on Saturday.

    Alright, time for me to shut up and get to the analysis. Hope I haven't lost y'all yet.
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 05-02-2015 at 11:42 AM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  22. #292
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses


    2015 Santa Anita Derby
    Date- 4/4/2015
    Location- Santa Anita Park (Arcadia, CA)
    Surface- Dirt
    Distance- 1 1/8 miles

    Derby entrants in this clip
    Dortmund Winner
    Bolo 3rd Place

    Dortmund
    Derby Post Position: #8
    Morning Line Odds: 3-1
    I'm trying to be as unbiased as possible when writing these descriptions, but it's tough to find negative things to say about a horse who is undefeated. He'll likely be one of the Derby co-favorites with Arkansas Derby winner American Pharoah.
    POSITIVES
    • He's Undefeated. Has 6 lifetime starts, 6 wins. Race distances have ranged from 6.5 furlongs (a little over 3/4 mile) to 1 1/8miles.
    • Although he's done most of his damage in races in California, he does have a win at Churchill Downs. His 2nd career start was at Churchill. So he shouldn't have any issues shipping to Churchill or handling with their racing surface.
    • Has beaten Derby contenders Bolo, Mr Z and Firing Line repeatedly
    • Has a versatile running style. Has won races leading the whole way(as the video shows above), but has also sat right off the leaders and pounced late to win. This running style should also give him minimal traffic trouble. If he's on/close to the lead, he won't have to pass many horses (or not many will get in his way)
    • His daddy is Big Brown, winner of the 2008 Kentucky Derby. So has pedigree/breeding that leads you to believe he can handle the Derby distance
    • Trainer is Hall of Famer Bob Baffert. He's won the Derby 3 times and has numerous other top 3 finishers in the race. He knows how to get a horse in peak condition for the Derby

    NEGATIVES
    To say I'm squinting hard and grasping at straws with some of these is pretty accurate, but there are some concerns going into the race
    • His running style either puts him on the lead or close to it. To carry his speed at 1 1/4 miles is a very tough thing to do. Will he have enough energy late, especially if other front-running horses are putting pressure on him early in the race?If a bunch of speed horses are all vying for the lead early in the race, they go faster and expend more energy trying to get the lead. Which means they'll have less energy for the end of the race. Dortmund wants to be able to set an easy slow pace to have as much energy as possible for the end
    • He's won every race, but hasn't been indestructable doing so. He's beaten fellow Derby entrant Firing Line by a head twice.
    • Baffert also trains the other likely Derby favorite- American Pharoah. He hasn't raced the 2 against each other. Does he know which horse is better? Also hasn't run against any of the top eastern Derby entrants thus far.


    Bolo
    Derby Post Position: #9
    Morning Line Odds: 30-1
    The Santa Anita Derby was a little bit of a disappointment for Bolo. As the video shows, he finished a non-competitive 3rd in the race. But he had some excuses and there are signs that he could be much-improved for the Derby.
    POSITIVES
    • Has 5 lifetime starts, and only finished outside of the top 3 in his career debut (2 wins, 2 3rds)
    • In the race before the Santa Anita Derby, he gave Dortmund a stiff challenge in the stretch (the finishing straight-away), and only lost by 1 3/4 lengths (length=length of a horse).
    • As the video shows above, he was a well-beaten 3rd. But he ran extremely wide all the way around the track. As where Dortmund had the lead and had the inside-track, Bolo raced wide and lost a lot of ground on the turns because of it. If he has a better trip, he probably doesn't get beat as bad as he did.
    • The Kentucky Derby will be his 3rd start off the layoff. A layoff means the horse has been given a break from racing to rest, train, etc. When they come back from their time off, it usually takes a few races to shake off the rust and return to peak form. The 3rd start back from a layoff is usually when a horse is in peak form (racing condition), so he should be fit for the Derby.
    • Gets a really good jockey in Rafael Bejarano to ride the horse
    • Has a running style that stalks the pace. Which means he's not on the lead, but it puts him pretty close. Usually gives him first chance to run down the front-runners coming for home. This running style should help him avoid the traffic trouble that a lot of other horses might encounter if they're coming from behind late in the race. I think in the Santa Anita Derby, he was a little further behind than he normally wants to be, and that's part of the reason he had to run wide.

    NEGATIVES
    • It's tough to argue, even while racing wide and losing ground in the Santa Anita Derby how bad he lost to Dortmund. Dortmund has beaten him twice.
    • His 2 wins have come over turf (grass racing). His owners have publicly commented that he is a better turf horse than a dirt horse. But they're still trying to win/be competitive in a race where the owners know that dirt isn't his best surface?
    • Has a very capable trainer in Carla Gaines, but she's never had a Kentucky Derby runner before. Gaines has commented that she prefered to return Bolo to turf racing. So owners are making the decision to run the horse in this spot, not the trainer (although 2 3rd place finishes in major stakes races on dirt is no embarrassment).
    • Has never raced outside of California. How will he handle shipping to Kentucky? How will he handle the Churchill surface?
    • Bejarano is a very good jockey, but doesn't have a win in the Derby. This will also be the first time he's rode Bolo. Normally (but not always, as I'll mention later on with Derby runner el Kabeir) it's good when the same jockey rides a horse going into the Derby.


    While Dortmund may seem like the much more obvious pick between the 2 of these, it's not a bad idea to use 2 horses coming from the same race when making exacta, trifecta, superfecta picks (top 2,3,4), etc. Bolo has enough going for him that shows he could run a competitive race on Derby day, and you'll get really good odds if you're willing to take the risk.
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 04-29-2015 at 03:14 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

  23. #293
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    These posts will be a work in progress over the next few days... will try to finish them by this weekend. And will update by Wednesday night next week with post position and morning line odds when the post position draw happens
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses


    2015 Florida Derby
    Date: 3/28/2015
    Location: Gulfstream Park (Miami)
    Distance: 1 1/8 Miles

    Derby entrants in this clip:
    Materiality Winner
    Upstart 2nd Place
    Itsaknockout (covered in the Fountain of Youth post) 4th Place

    Materiality
    Derby Post Position: #3
    Morning Line Odds: 12-1
    Materiality has done nothing wrong in his very young career. He’s still improving, but 130+ years of Kentucky Derby history is working against him.
    POSITIVES
    • Horse is undefeated. 3 career starts (all in 2015), 3 wins.
    • Since he's only raced 3 times, there's potential for him to still mature/improve
    • His daddy is Afleet Alex, who finished 3rd in the Kentucky Derby in 2005, and went onto win the Preakness and the Belmont (the next 2 legs of the triple crown) after. His breeding indicates that he should be able to handle this 1 1/4 mile distance
    • Trained by Todd Pletcher, who has trained numerous Derby entrants over the years. Won the race with Super Saver in 2010. One of the best trainers in the game.
    • As the video shows, he has a front-running style which should keep him out of traffic trouble. Should be on or close to the lead in the Derby
    • Breaking from the #3-hole (3rd closest from the rail) should help his chances of getting an inside track with his speed. If a bunch of other horses go for the lead, they'll all have to run wider than him. Any ground that can be saved in a race this long is a big deal.
    • Was encouraging how he won the Florida Derby in gritty fashion. He had won his previous 2 races in dominant fashion where he wasn't really challenged. But he really had to gut out a win by fending off a stiff challenge from Upstart in the stretch to win the Florida Derby.
    • Won his career debut on a sloppy (wet, muddy) track. So should be able to handle a wet surface if it rains a lot on Derby day.
    • Will be ridden by Javier Castellano, who is very accomplished and is one of Pletcher's go-to jockeys.
    • In addition to winning this race, he trounced Derby contender Stanford by 5 lengths in his 2nd career start

    NEGATIVES
    • The dreaded "Curse of Apollo". Not since Apollo in 1882 has a horse that was un-raced at age 2 won the Derby. I mentioned above that Materiality has raced 3 times this year. For horses, they all turn 3 on January 1st (for racing purposes). Since he didn't run last year, it means by horse racing standards he didn't run at age 2. He's done nothing wrong thus far in his young career, but over 130 years of history is working against him (but streaks and records are made to be broken... eventually, right?)
    • Todd Pletcher over the past 10 years had probably had more contenders in the Derby than anyone. As of right now, he has 4 horses that have qualified for the Derby. But yet for all the horses he gets into the race, he's only won it once.
    • Jockey John Velasquez has ridden this colt to all 3 of his victories. But he's also the regular rider for another extremely talented Pletcher-trained colt named Carpe Diem (which I'll talk about in the Blue Grass post). Velasquez has chosen to ride Carpe Diem instead of Materiality. Pretty safe to assume that Velasquez thinks Carpe Diem has a better chance to win the Derby. As good as Javier Castellano is, I'd like the horse's chances more if he had the jockey that's ridden him already.
    • His front-running style is what might possibly be his down-fall in the Derby. He'll be on/close to the lead, but how many other horses will by vying for that early lead with him? If there are a few other Derby contenders that put some heat on him early, he might expend too much energy early to have a chance late.
    • Has never raced outside of Florida (only at Gulfstream Park). Will he handle shipping to Churchill ok?


    Upstart
    Derby Post Position: #19
    Morning Line Odds: 15-1
    Upstart seems like a gritty gamer that always gives each race his all, but is his best good enough? Can make plenty of arguments for both sides. Including the potential advantages and disadvantages to his Derby post position
    POSITIVES
    • Has 7 lifetime starts, and has never finished outside the top 3 (3 wins)
    • Well traveled. Has run against top competition in New York, Florida and California. Should be able to ship well to Churchill Downs.
    • Has a nice stalking running style, which usually leaves him a few lengths off the front-runners early in races. But gives him first chance to pounce on tiring front-runners late in races. With him being closer to the lead, it should reduce his chances for traffic trouble.
    • Has beaten Wood Memorial winner Frosted and derby entrant El Kabeir in a previous races, and has beaten Itsaknockout twice (although he was DQ'd in one of those wins).
    • Very promising young jockey Jose Ortiz has ridden him in every one of his races.
    • Has a 2nd place finish over a sloppy (wet) track. So should still be able to do well if it rains at Churchill on Derby day.
    • The advantage of being all the way out in post #19, is he should have very little interference early in the race. There is only one horse to the outside of him (as opposed to horses potentially pinching him from both sides), so he should have every opportunity to get a clean start.

    NEGATIVES
    • Had every chance to run down Materiality in the stretch in the Florida Derby, but couldn't do it.
    • Has had a little bit of bad luck in his last 2 races due to erratic running in the stretch. In his last race before the Florida Derby, he beat Itsaknockout in the Fountain of Youth Stakes (also at Gulfstream Park). But he was DQ'd to 2nd place for bumping/interfering with Itsaknockout in the stretch. He also appears to do the same in the Florida derby. When he looked like he was about to run alongside Materiality, he lugged into him. He needs to find a way to run a clean race in the Derby, because his inability to run straight will cost him when he's running against 19 other horses.
    • Could the reason he hasn't been able to keep himself running straight in his last 2 races due to tired legs? Can he handle the 1 1/4 mile distance?
    • Being drawn so far to the outside could really hurt his chances of early-race positioning. There are 18 horses to the inside of him. With a running style that wants him closer to the lead, he might get caught wide around the first turn, or be taken further back early in the race to avoid being wide. Both scenarios don't seem ideal.
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 04-30-2015 at 02:14 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by fiopadp7791 View Post
    UAE Derby
    Date: 3/28/2015
    Location: Meydan Racecourse (Dubai, UAE)
    Distance: 1 3/16 Miles

    Derby entrants in this clip:
    Mubtaahij Winner
    Derby Post Position: #6
    Morning Line Odds:20-1

    Mubtaahij smashed the competition in Dubai. It was an eye-popping performance that has caught the attention of a lot of people. But "expert" opinions on the horse's chances for success in Kentucky are very split (he might be the most polarizing of the Derby contenders due to the widely varying opinions of his chances in Kentucky).
    POSITIVES
    • The horse made his first 2 career starts on turf. When that didn't go very well, trainer Mike de Kock switched him to dirt races, and the rest is history. 5 dirt starts- 4 wins and a 2nd by a head (all in Dubai).
    • Seems to keep improving with added distance. Has run longer than any other Derby entrant, winning two 1 3/16 mile races with ease.
    • In past years when I've made this write up, I had to mention that Meydan had a synthetic dirt course that can act/feel differently than normal dirt to horses. So for horses coming from Dubai, you wouldn't know if they could handle dirt, because they had never run on it. Meydan switched back to a traditional dirt surface last year, so Mubtaahij won on dirt.
    • His trainer is one of the best in the world in Mike de Kock. He's based in South Africa, dominates the Dubai Carnival (January-Late March), and sends his best horses to Europe, Asia, and everywhere in between to run in the biggest races.
    • The one place where he pretty much has never sent horses to race, is the US. He's sent horses to the US only 6 times in the past, all have finished in the top 3. It's a big deal that he even considered sending the horse here, because seriously he never does it. So for him to ship a horse all the way from Dubai, he's not taking a flyer and hoping for the best. He's in it to win it
    • The trainer has enough clout/credibility that he is the one making the decisions where his horses run. The horse running here is not an example of a greedy owner with crazy "Derby dreams". It was de Kock's choice.
    • The horse is already in the US. He's currently stabled and working out at Arlington in Chicago. Preliminary reports have said he's handled the travel fine and has settled in there. Will ship to Churchill next week.

    NEGATIVES
    • Not sure if "curse" is the right word to use, but Dubai horses have never fared well in the Kentucky Derby. No horse has ever won the Derby shipping from Dubai. In fact, no horse has ever finished in the top 4... Yikes. (But like the Curse of Apollo, this streak will eventually end)
    • The lack of success on Derby day might have to do with the rigors of shipping/traveling. Historically, when US horses ship to Dubai to race, they usually get a long break after. The travel saps them, and they need time to recover. Will it be the same for Mubtaahij travelling here? Will all the travel leave him at 100% for the race?
    • Who has he beaten in Dubai? The competition there was very suspect. It's widely believed he hasn't run against anything close to what he'll be running against in Kentucky (but for not running against much competition, he beat them easily)
    • I mentioned that Meyden previously used a synthetic surface. But that track has only been open since 2010. Before Meydan, the UAE Derby was ran at a track called Nad al Sheba, which was a traditional dirt course. So the poor results of Derby runners coming from Dubai over the years, most of them in past years had run on dirt before shipping here.


    The past Kentucky Derby results of Dubai horses is disturbingly bad. But if you're willing to overlook the Dubai trends, the horse hasn't done much wrong since switching to dirt. Knowing that you have a world-class trainer to prepare Mubtaahij for the Derby should add some confidence. Based on the merits of the horse, he's ready to run in the Derby and hold his own. But history sticks out like a sore thumb.
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 04-29-2015 at 03:26 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses


    2015 Fountain of Youth Stakes
    Date: 2/21/2015
    Location: Gulfstream Park (Miami)
    Distance: 1 1/16 Miles

    Derby entrants in this clip-
    Itsaknockout Winner via disqualification
    Upstart (covered in the Florida Derby post) 2nd place via DQ
    Frammento 3rd place
    Frosted (covered in the Wood Memorial post) 4th place

    The Fountain of Youth stakes is considered the prep race to the Florida Derby. It still offers points to qualify for the Kentucky Derby, and that's how Itsaknockout and Frammento got the bulk of their qualification points. Since their Final Derby preps were a little bit of a disappointment, I think this race better shows what they're capable of.

    Itsaknockout
    Derby Post Position: #12
    Morning Line Odds: 30-1
    After getting a win via disqualification against Upstart in the Fountain of Youth, the non-competitive 4th-place finish in the Florida Derby was a pretty disappointing effort. But there are some reasons to think he's capable of a rebound in the Kentucky Derby. His Fountain of Youth effort gives him a chance to be competitive in the Derby. His Florida Derby effort will doom him. If you're willing to overlook the Florida Derby result, he could have a say in the outcome at huge odds.
    POSITIVES
    • Going into the Florida Derby, he was undefeated.
    • Trained by Todd Pletcher, who as mentioned in other posts, is one of the best trainers in the game and knows how to prepare horses for the Derby.
    • Will be making only his 5th lifetime start, so still room for maturity/improvement
    • Has been ridden in each race by very capable jockey Luis Saez
    • Like Upstart, has a nice stalking running style which should sit him just off the front-runners and give him first chance to run past them. In the Florida Derby, I think he was a bit further behind the front-runners than he's been in other races. In the Kentucky Derby, he'll probably be closer to the lead again.
    • He's officially beaten Derby contenders Upstart and Frosted in a race.

    NEGATIVES
    • He was beaten by over 20 lengths by Materiality/Upstart in the Florida Derby. Was this a bump in the road, or is he THAT inferior to the top 2 finishers in this race?
    • When he was given the win in the Fountain of Youth via disqualification of Upstart, it was controversial. There was some bumping/interference, and as the video shows Upstart kept veering out on him. But many people thought it wasn't enough to warrant a DQ. Upstart did finish 2 lengths ahead of Itsaknockout in that race.
    • Has never raced outside of Florida, so how will he handle shipping to run elsewhere?
    • Not only was he beaten badly by the top 2 in the Florida Derby, it didn't look like he was closing out the race strong or gaining any ground on them. Can he handle the Kentucky Derby distance?


    Frammento
    Derby Post Position: #21
    Morning Line Odds: 50-1
    Frammento didn't have enough qualification points to get into the Kentucky Derby field until there were a few late drop outs. With that being said, there are still some positives that give him a chance to hold his own, now that he's in the race. The Fountain of Youth finish was very encouraging. His result in the Bluegrass Stakes was a disappointment. So which horse shows up?
    POSITIVES
    • 7 Career starts: only one race where he finished outside of the top 4.
    • Trained by Hall of Famer Nick Zito. He's won the Kentucky Derby twice.
    • Ridden by Corey Nakatani, who is widely regarded as one of the best jockeys in the game. Rode Nehro to a 2nd place finish in the Derby in 2011.
    • When finishing 3rd in the Fountain of Youth, he was closing like a freight train late, and was quickly gaining on the top 2 at the end. If he can have another late run like that in the Derby, he'll have more time/distance to pass the front-runners.
    • Being in the furthest outside post shouldn't be a problem for him at all. With his late running style, it will allow him to break clean, and then settle in a good spot behind most of the pack.
    • Commanding Curve last year and Golden Soul 2 years ago were both Kentucky Derby longshots that weren't very competitive in their final prep races going into the Derby, and both closed from far back to finish 2nd. Shows that there's very recent precedent for a horse like Frammento to have success in the Derby.
    • is he an "every other" race horse? His 3 career top-3 finishes have come after average/bad race results. He just had a disappointing finish in the Bluegrass, so his race history suggests he could be sitting on a big effort.
    • Beat Wood Memorial winner Frosted in the Fountain of Youth

    NEGATIVES
    • After wowing us with his fast closing run in the Fountain of Youth, he was very flat in the Bluegrass, and didn't really gain on the top 3 in that race (Carpe Diem, Danzig Moon and OchoOchoOcho). A repeat of his Bluegrass dud will doom in in the Derby.
    • Beyond losing to the top 3 in the Bluegrass, he's lost to Derby contenders Itsaknockout, Frosted, and Upstart (twice).
    • Has only 1 career win.
    • Has 1 start at Churchill, where he was a non-competitive 4th in that race. How will he handle the Churchill surface?
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 04-30-2015 at 02:14 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Those Dubai entries always look so dominant and then get housed at Churchill Downs, amirite?
    Quote Originally Posted by MotorAve View Post
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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses


    2015 Arkansas Derby
    Date: 4/11/2015
    Location: Oaklawn Park (Hot Springs, Arkansas)
    Distance: 1 1/8 Miles

    Derby entrants in this clip
    American Pharoah (winner)
    Far Right (2nd)
    Mr Z (3rd)

    American Pharoah
    Derby Post Position: #18
    Morning Line Odds: 5-2 (favorite)
    American Pharoah's romp in the Arkansas Derby makes him the probable Kentucky Derby betting favorite. A repeat of that effort and he'll be very formidable in the Derby. His Derby Post Position could help or hurt his chances.
    POSITIVES
    • Has won 4 in a row, only losing his career debut in 5 career starts.
    • His daddy is PioneeroftheNile, who finished 2nd in the 2009 Kentucky Derby. So has breeding that indicates that he can handle running the Derby distance.
    • Trained by Bob Baffert. It's an embarrassment of riches for Baffert this year, as he'll likely have the 2 Derby favorites in American Pharoah and Dortmund. Baffert has trained 3 Derby winners is widely regarded as one of the best trainers in the game.
    • His jockey is Victor Espinoza (ridden him in all 4 wins), who rode last year's Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome.
    • American Pharoah showed a little versatility in the Arkansas Derby romp. In the 3 races before the Arkansas Derby, he was on the lead from start to finish. In the Arkansas Derby, he sat just off the leader, who was setting a really fast pace, and blew past him when the leader got tired. Showing that he doesn't have to have the lead to win races enhances his chances to win the Derby. A lot of front-running style horses have to get the lead early in the race at all cost, and will exert whatever energy they have to get the lead. Which will leave them with nothing left when they're finishing the race. Being able to sit off the pace will conserve American Pharoah's energy if a hot pace duel develops.
    • Has drawn post #18 for the Derby. Being out so wide is an advantage because there's less chance of trouble coming out of the gate. With only 2 horses drawn to the outside of him, it increases his chances for a clean start (instead of the chances of horses crashing in on him on both sides at the start). That's a very valuable advantage for a horse with so much early speed.
    • Horse has successfully shipped from his Southern California base to Arkansas to win twice. So he doesn't seem to mind racing outside of SoCal, and should ship fine to Kentucky.
    • In his last race before the Arkansas Derby, he romped in the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn over a sloppy track. So if it rains on Derby day, he should be fine running over a wet/muddy track
    • Was on 5+ month layoff (rest/break) from September to March. The Kentucky Derby will be his 3rd start off the layoff, which is usually when horses are in their peak racing condition

    NEGATIVES
    • Dortmund and American Pharaoh haven't ever raced against each other. If you watch the Santa Anita Derby, Baffert also trained the 2nd place finisher in that race, One Lucky Dane. Dane isn't running in the Derby due to injury, but it does show that trainer Bob Baffert is willing to run his horses against each other. So why were Dortmund and Pharaoh kept separate? Does he know one is better than the other?
    • His front-running style could be an issue if he gets into a pace duel in the Derby. And even if a hot pace duel doesn't develop, can he really lead the Kentucky Derby field all the way around for 1 1/4 miles? That's a tough ask.
    • Since he either goes to the lead or sits very close to it early, being in post position #18 could present a problem for him. There's 17 horses that will be running inside of him. If a lot decide to contest the lead early, he could either get caught running very wide around the first turn, or have to sit further back than he wants to avoid being wide. Neither scenario seems ideal.
    • The competition in Arkansas is very suspect this year. Granted, for not beating much he romped against them, but the competition will be much stiffer in the Derby.


    Far Right
    Derby Post Position: #20
    Morning Line Odds: 30-1
    Far Right was a distant 2nd-best to American Pharaoh in the Arkansas Derby. Will he be able to improve on that effort and close the gap in the Derby? There are some positive signs to show that he can, but there are also concerns based on how bad he (and the rest of the Arkansas Derby field) was beaten by American Pharaoh. But overall he's been a very solid performer and he's capable of doing some damage at big odds on Derby day.
    POSITIVES
    • Raced 3 times at Churchill Downs last year: a 1st, 2nd and a 3rd place finish in those races. So he has proven success over the Churchill dirt surface.
    • 9 career starts, has never finished worse than 4th in any of those races, and 8 out of 9 he finished in the top 3.
    • Had only 1 win in 6 starts last year (at age 2). Has 2 wins and a 2nd (in the Arkansas Derby) in 3 starts this year. So has matured with age.
    • Was running mainly in sprint races early in his career. He's thrived running at longer distances. Indicates that he should be able to handle the Kentucky Derby distance
    • His jockey is Mike Smith, who has ridden him in his last 3 starts. He rode Giacomo to a Kentucky Derby victory in 2005. But overall he's widely regarded as one of the best jockeys in the game.
    • So many Derby contenders this year seem to like to be on the lead or closer to the lead. Far Right is a deep closer that comes from far back and blows by his tiring competition late. He put that on display being the best of the rest in the Arkansas Derby. If a pace duel develops in the Kentucky Derby, Far Right really has a good chance to pass a lot of the competition coming for home.
    • Being in the furthest outside post shouldn't be a problem for him at all. With his late running style, it will allow him to break clean, and then settle in a good spot behind most of the pack.
    • In his last race before the Arkansas Derby, he won the Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn over a sloppy track. So should be able to handle a wet/muddy track if it rains on Derby day.
    • Had an almost 2 month break between the Southwest Stakes and Arkansas Derby. So was he in peak condition for the Arkansas Derby? He might've had a little rust to shake off, so he might be sitting on a better effort in the Kentucky Derby.
    • He's beaten fellow Derby contender Mr Z 3 races in a row
    • Commanding Curve last year and Golden Soul 2 years ago were both Kentucky Derby longshots that weren't very competitive in their final prep races going into the Derby, and both closed from far back to finish 2nd. Shows that there's very recent precedent for a horse like Far Right to have success in the Derby.

    NEGATIVES
    • We saw what American Pharaoh did to that Arkansas Derby field. Is American Pharoah THAT much better than Far Right, or can he improve to close the gap? But can he close the gap to even make things competitive?
    • His running style can be viewed both as a positive and a negative. If he's running from far behind most of the field in the Derby, he's the one that is likely to experience the most "traffic" problems in trying to make his big run at the end. Trying to pass up to 19 other horses and find clear running room to do so could be a big issue for him.
    • He's lost to Derby contenders Mr Z and OchoOchoOcho in previous races


    Mr Z
    Derby Post Position: #17
    Morning Line Odds: 50-1
    Mr Z will be one of the longest shots on the board in the Kentucky Derby, but the horse is battle-tested and has held his own vs a lot of the Kentucky Derby field. Even after what American Pharaoh did to this Arkansas Derby field, there are some positive signs that he can run big in the Derby.
    • Mr Z has absolutely run the gauntlet in his 12-race career. To say "he's battle-tested" is almost an understatement. He broke his maiden (you run in maiden races until you win) in his first career start. His 11 starts since have all been in stakes races. So he's been running against very stiff competition throughout his career.
    • Has 9 top 3 finishes in those 12 starts
    • Has a win over the Churchill Downs surface
    • Trained by Hall of Famer D. Wayne Lukas. He's trained 4 Kentucky Derby winners.
    • His daddy is Malibu Moon, who is one of the hotter sires in the game right now. His progeny are especially successful on dirt. Malibu Moon is the daddy of Orb, who won the Derby 2 years ago.
    • Lost by a neck to Kentucky Derby Contenders Dortmund and Firing Line in a stakes race last Year. Lost by a nose to OchoOchoOcho while beating Far Right in another.
    • In an era where top-class horses are given long rests between races, Mr Z has been on a steady campaign since last June, and continues to run quality races. The horse has a versatile running style. Has gone straight to the lead in some races, and can sit off the lead in others. Has had success doing both.
    • He looked like he was actually moving pretty well in the Arkansas Derby. He was clearly in 2nd place for most of the stretch before getting passed late to finish 3rd by Far Right.

    NEGATIVES
    • At the top of the stretch of the Arkansas Derby, he was moving alongside American Pharaoh, and then he got dusted after that. Is Mr Z capable of better?
    • So Mr Z has been in some really tough races, and only has 1 win to show for it. He's been competitive, but he hasn't gotten a "W" since his career debut.
    • He's lost to Far Right in 3 consecutive races. Derby contenders Dortmund, Firing Line, OchoOchoOcho, Carpe Diem, International Star, Stanford, and War Story have all beaten him in previous races.
    • Even after American Pharaoh had him beaten, he looked like he was clearly the 2nd best horse in the race before tiring late, and getting passed by Far Right. So if he's tiring out at 1 1/8 miles, how will he handle running 1 1/4 miles?
    Last edited by fiopadp7791; 04-30-2015 at 02:15 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Quote Originally Posted by santasutt View Post
    Those Dubai entries always look so dominant and then get housed at Churchill Downs, amirite?
    Yep. But the key difference this year compared to recent years is Dubai is a dirt track again. Horses had been running over a synthetic track since 2010, which is different than traditional dirt. But yeah... history is definitely not on Mubtaahij's side

    NEGATIVES
    • Not sure if "curse" is the right word to use, but Dubai horses have never fared well in the Kentucky Derby. No horse has ever won the Derby shipping from Dubai. In fact, no horse has ever finished in the top 4... Yikes. (But like the Curse of Apollo, this streak will eventually end)
    • The lack of success on Derby day might have to do with the rigors of shipping/traveling. Historically, when US horses ship to Dubai to race, they usually get a long break after. The travel saps them, and they need time to recover. Will it be the same for Mubtaahij travelling here? Will all the travel leave him at 100% for the race?
    • Who has he beaten in Dubai? The competition there was very suspect. It's widely believed he hasn't run against anything close to what he'll be running against in Kentucky (but for not running against much competition, he beat them easily)
    • I mentioned that Meyden previously used a synthetic surface. But that track has only been open since 2010. Before Meydan, the UAE Derby was ran at a track called Nad al Sheba, which was a traditional dirt course. So the poor results of Derby runners coming from Dubai over the years, most of them in past years had run on dirt before shipping here.


    The past Kentucky Derby results of Dubai horses is disturbingly bad. But if you're willing to overlook the Dubai trends, the horse hasn't done much wrong since switching to dirt. Knowing that you have a world-class trainer to prepare Mubtaahij for the Derby should add some confidence. Based on the merits of the horse, he's ready to run in the Derby and hold his own. But history sticks out like a sore thumb.
    If y'all fresh to death, then I'm deceased... -Kanye West
    Jamiroquai 2016 please.
    Quote Originally Posted by miscorrections View Post
    How is any of that ironic? On this board I absolutely expect terrible people to call other people terrible.

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    Default Re: The 136th Running for the Roses

    Of course you had pointed that out.

    I watch all the vids first, then read the editorials.

    Gotta throw a Baffert horse(or two) in your trifecta in 2015.
    Last edited by santasutt; 04-24-2015 at 07:12 PM.
    Quote Originally Posted by MotorAve View Post
    Careful, while the threats are amusingly clueless, I could probably have this whole board shut down with one phone call.

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    Replies: 224
    Last Post: 11-09-2010, 01:44 PM
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