Today marks the end of the big Kentucky Derby Prep races with the Arkansas Derby and Toyota Blue Grass Stakes, leaving us with a few small prep races left to run before the Kentucky Derby but let’s face it, they will be of little impact on the Kentucky Derby picture.
Unless something unthinkable happens again this week that matches that of the Uncle Mo debacle that I am still fuming about thanks to his barn playing innocent that they didn’t know he was sick which we all know is a crock of you know what, then today’s races should play out fairly straight forward.
I am just going to make a few quick notes and points this week but cover two races since the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes and Arkansas Derby are the final two big Kentucky Derby Prep races left for the 2011 season. The field for the 137th Kentucky Derby is pretty much set so for those running today it’s real simple, win and you are in, lose and you are out.
Toyota Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in Race #9 at 5:45pm
This race has lost it’s sparkle over the past few years due to it being a polytrack surface instead of dirt like the Derby at Churchill Downs, it hasn’t had a winner go onto win the Derby, only a second place finisher.
Overall this is not a strong field of horses despite the 12 entries and while Santiva is the best horse the pace of this race could be too slow, keeping too many horses in it for a sprint to the finish. Since it is a polytrack surface look at the turf horses to do well on it.
Win – Santiva, Place – Joes Blazing Aaron, Show – Sensational Slam and just off the money Praetereo
Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park in Race #11 at 5:58pm
Going against The Factor is just plain silly! Of all the Kentucky Derby Contenders this year, The Factor is the only one to post three consecutive triple digit Beyer figures and as we all know, numbers don’t lie! Dialed In, Uncle Mo and all the rest don’t even come close to matching The Factor when it comes to numbers and consistency.
This race appears to be loaded with talent and for the most part it is but the question that has to be begged is who wants to run with The Factor and his early speed and can they still make the distance coming that hard out of the gate and around the first turn, then again, can The Factor continue to press the pace early with the longer distance?
Win – The Factor, Place – Nehro, Show – 1Caleb’sPosse|1aAlternation and just off the money Archarcharch