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Next Stop Kentucky

Posted by on 3/31/2014 9:23:25 PM

Things will start to crystallize for online sports betting site players this weekend and the Wild Wild West runs its premier race, the Santa Anita Derby and whoever wins will be off to Kentucky.

The million-dollar 9-furlong fixtures pits some quick runners and it has been a solid prep over the decades so let’s glance at some of the possible contenders.

A total of 7 runners have accomplished the SA Derby /KY Derby double including the 2012 hero I’ll Have Another.

Other prominent winners include Swaps, Affirmed, Winning Colors and Sunday Silence.

Last year Goldencents got a great trip at Santa Anita but was only a brief threat the first Saturday in May.

California Chrome figures to be a force in this race. He has won 4 stakes in his career at distances from 5 and a half furlongs to a mile and a sixteenth and he was flattered when the horse he just beat earlier in the year by over 5 and a half lengths, Tamarando, returned to loop the El Camino Derby field.

In the San Felipe last time, Chrome put in a monster race with a 108 Beyer. This could be a showdown with Candy Boy.

Candy Boy lost his first 3 races but then graduated over 4 rivals at 8 and a half furlongs in Inglewood with an 81 Beyer. His trainer John Sadler spots horses great year in and year out and he thought enough of this runner to put him in the CashCall Futurity for his final 2013 start and he was far from disgraced when 2nd to the Eclipse Award champ Shared Belief.

He was extremely impressive taking the Robert B. Lewis and was boosted when the horse that ran second that day, Chitu, won the Sunland Derby with a 102 Beyer Speed Figure.

Schoolofhardrocks didn’t run all that bad last time considering the winner freaked. He may have to figure out a way to turn the tables on California Chrome, but that’s why the run them. This son of Rock Hard Ten has every right to thrive with distance as his sire won the Santa Anita Derby. His dam only raced once but she made the most of it coming from dead last in an 8 and half furlong turf race at Del Mar. All three siblings won, two banked 6 figures including Coffee Clique, who won a Grade 3 at this distance and earned over $190,000.

The Admiral could be an option for trainer Bob Baffert. He faced some nice horses early in his career and took awhile to break through but after graduating at the tricky distance of 7 furlongs, he stretched out and won in an entry-level allowance affair.

Hoppertunity was professional winning the Rebel Stakes last month with a career best 100 Beyer. He has tactical speed but he has shown the ability to pass horses.

Rprettyboyfloyd’s has talent but is still looking for his first win. He has been a bad actor at the gate breaking slowly in 2 of his 5 efforts. The pedigree is enticing. His sire won Graded routes, was second in the Kentucky Derby and his dam also won routing. The lone sibling to race, Stick to Your Guns, was turf only but did win at 9 furlongs.

When assessing the result of this race, try to project which horses are improving and which has yet to peaked. That is the way to attempt to isolate a Kentucky Derby winner.

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