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Florida Derby

Posted by Brian Mulligan on 3/27/2015 5:14:35 AM

About the Race and Track

The 9-furlong $1 Million Grade 1 Florida Derby will be renewed Saturday at Gulfstream Park and a solid cast of 9 will pit skills with 100 points on the line for the winner to move toward eligibility to the Kentucky Derby.

Spectacular Bid won this race in 1979 and other that made the Florida Derby/Kentucky Derby double include Swale, Unbridled, Barbaro, Big Brown and last year’s winner Orb.

This race has always been important. Spectacular Bid won this race in 1979 and others that made the Florida Derby/Kentucky Derby double include Swale, Unbridled, Barbaro, Big Brown and the 2013 winner Orb .

Last year Constitution was coming off an allowance win when he got the perfect trip in the Florida Derby to win by a neck with a 98 Beyer Speed Figure.

Speed has been playing very well of late at Gulfstream so expect the winner of this race to maintain contact with the leaders at all times.

A Longshot With Some Value: Materiality

This runner has bee impressive and he rates a legit chance to shock his stablemate and the field.

The Pick: Upstart (Win)

Ami’s Flatter finished 2nd in the Tampa Bay Derby and opted for this race instead of the Blue Grass at Keeneland.

Jack Tripp is ambitiously placed as just a maiden winner. He is trained by Dale Romans along with Indianaughty , won his stateside debut locally but came back to earth in a thud with a pop and stop effort in the El Camino at Golden Gate.

Todd Pletcher , who won this race last year, saddles Itsaknockout and Materiality.

Itsaknockout is a fighter. He proved it when the got the nod from the stewards in the Fountain of Youth. He has won all 3 of his starts and he has been agile in victory. And the pedigree screams class.

His sire Lemon Drop Kid could run all day long. His winning dam is kin to Grade 2 winner and near $750,000 earner Rush Bay and go deep in his pedigree and multiple stakes winner and $1.1 million earner Chorwon will be discovered.


Materiality is a perfect 2 for 2 so far but he didn’t race as a juvenile and it’s been an impossible thing to overcome for decades as far as winning the Kentucky Derby is concerned.

Still, he both of his wins were visually impressive and his final Beyer of 104 jumps off the canvas. And of the Pletchers, he needs to points to got to Kentucky.

Quimet graduated locally but it was a maiden claimer and he lost his last 2 starts.

My Point Exactly has won his last two races and was game as ever last time.

Dekabrist won his first 2 races, both sprints, but has been in a funk since. If there is an upside to this runner it is the fact he has a ton of experience.

Upstart proved his affinity for the Gulfstream surface when the good the Grade 3 Holy Bull and he finished first in the Fountain of Youth by nearly 3 lengths before the stewards took him down for drifting out late.

He has trained steadily and fast since that race and he should sit a super stalk and kick journey. The drills are well spaced and he is the one to beat.

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