Derby Dozen (video) - February 5, 2013 - Presented by Shadwell Farm

[brightcove videoid="2141887310001"]


Violence Todd Pletcher

Medaglia d’Oro—Violent Beauty, by Gone West

Resisting the temptation to replace him on top with one of the brilliant winners from this past weekend. Can’t forget the fact that he won his career debut in 1:22 4/5 at Spa and then won the Nashua in 1:35 1/5, so he’s pretty fast and classy himself. He’s up to 5 furlongs in his breezes. Also like the fact that he does just what he has to to win, while leaving himself plenty of room to move forward. So far, he seems like the most professional colt of the group and only needs to make the normal transition from 2 to 3.


Itsmyluckyday Eddie Plesa Jr.

Lawyer Ron—Viva la Slew, by Doneraile Court

Also see no reason why he should be lowered after sensational back-to-back stakes victories in very fast time. He’s 4-for-6 on dirt, he’s bred to go a distance, and he’s won at Gulfstream, Calder, and Monmouth over fast and sloppy surfaces, and stretching out from 5f to a mile and 70 yards. In fact, he’s starting to remind me a great deal of his sire, who also turned into a winning machine this time of the year by using his high cruising speed to overpower his opponents.


Shanghai Bobby Todd Pletcher

Harlan's Holiday—Steelin', by Orientate

Despite his stablemates’ monster efforts over the weekend, still cannot look past that 11 1/2-length gap to third in the Holy Bull. Yes, I’ve heard ad nauseam he can’t go 1 1/4 miles, and the BC Juvenile was a terrible race, but we hear that almost every year with the 2-year-old champ and how can you knock his wins in the Champagne and Hopeful? And you have to give him credit for traveling cross-country and winning the Juvenile off a monster effort in the Champagne. He’s way too talented to dismiss off one defeat, considering he broke the track record in that defeat, and is still the kingpin of the Pletcher barn until one of is mates proves otherwise. If he can’t go 1 1/4 miles, which is possible, we’ll know soon enough. I just wish he was going to have more than two starts. He’s got a lot to prove in that next start – no more going to the lead and needs to get a lot of foundation.


Normandy Invasion Chad Brown

Tapit—Boston Lady, by Boston Harbor

Still not sold on the Boston Harbor-Capote line on dam side and tail-female family getting him 1 1/4 miles, but if he returns and puts in the same explosive burst of speed he showed in the Remsen and can sustain it, you have to think he can stretch out another furlong with no problem. Nice 1:01 1/5 breeze Feb. 3. It’s imperative he doesn’t show any regression in his return. He just needs to demonstrate that big kick and keep coming in the final furlong.


Revolutionary Todd Pletcher

War Pass—Runup the Colors, by A.P. Indy

Well, you can’t say he wasn’t given a character builder in the Withers and didn’t emerge battle-tested from that nightmare trip. He proved you can leave ‘em gasping winning by a neck as much as winning by 16 lengths. Slow Beyer, but was in fourth and fifth gear waiting for room until the final sixteenth. Flew home in :05 4/5 and galloped out a pole ahead of the others. And remember, he missed his final work and went into the race not having worked in 13 days. Strong female family, and dam won the Alabama. Not worried about distance at all, but am worried a little about his tardiness coming out of the gate. It’s gotten him in trouble several times, but some of them he couldn’t help, as horses breaking next to him always seem to do something stupid.


Verrazano Todd Pletcher

More Than Ready—Enchanted Rock, by Giant’s Causeway

It could just be this is one freak of a horse, although the question is, where do you go after winning your second career start by 16 1/4 lengths in 1:34 4/5, earning a 105 Beyer and 104 Brisnet? Was it too much too soon? That is a monster effort for a lightly raced horse who didn’t debut until Jan. 1. Don’t like four career starts going into the Derby. Big Brown had 3, but all were distance races and he was a total freak in a poor year. And he debuted in August as a 2-year-old. Animal Kingdom had four preps, but they, too, were all at a mile or farther. Before that, the last horse to win the Derby with four starts was Exterminator in 1918. There is a big difference between four and five starts. And, of course, there is the Apollo curse, not having raced at 2, but in his case it was by only one day. So, is he special enough to overcome history? Some knock his sire’s ability to get a classic horse, but he does fit the recent Derby sire mold and this colt’s powerful female family certainly will carry him.


Flashback Bob Baffert

Tapit—Rhumb Line, by Mr. Greeley

He is another who will buck history with only four starts. He needs to be toughened up in his next race, as the Lewis was nothing more than a workout in a four-horse field. It is worth noting that he had a couple of setbacks after his first race and hadn’t run for two months, so he likely wasn’t at 100% for this race. He was carrying his head a bit high after turning for home, finally getting down and leveling off in the final sixteenth. That’s when he was most impressive. He, like Verrazano, has freakish qualities, but to what degree they will help him get 1 1/4 miles on first Saturday in May with so little racing experience remains to be seen.


Oxbow D. Wayne Lukas

Awesome Again—Tizamazing, by Cee's Tizzy

Let’s not forget what he did to the Lecomte field. Not the strongest group assembled, but he just totally outclassed and demolished them, and how can you not like an Awesome Again, out of a full-sister to Tiznow and Budroyale, and the dam of Paynter? Someone has to step forward in Louisiana and show there is life outside the Pletcher and Baffert barns, and right now he looks like the one until someone shows they can get even close to him. Keep an eye on up-and-comers Departing and Proud Strike. Lukas has had several pretenders on the Derby trail in recent years and tried hard to get them to the race, but it looks as if this colt has the ability to take him there all on his own.


Goldencents Doug O'Neill

Into Mischief—Golden Works, by Banker's Gold

Well, you can use the simple formula that he was hard-ridden to beat Den’s Legacy by 1 1/2 lengths in the Sham, and Den’s Legacy was beaten 6 1/4 lengths by Flashback. To be honest, I really have no idea how good this horse is other than the fact he can win anywhere at any distance and can beat you on the lead or just off the pace. But he also needs to show a little more professionalism, as he did pull a bit early in the Sham and needs to assert himself more in the stretch. Would like to see him settle a little better early. He showed in the Champagne the raw talent is there.


Overanalyze Todd Pletcher

Dixie Union—Unacloud, by Unaccounted For

Boy, where does he rank right now in the Pletcher barn? Forgotten horse, but he does have a solid 2-year-old foundation, with four graded stakes in five starts. He just has to put big efforts back-to-back. Fast enough to win going 5 furlongs in :57 2/5 and enough stamina to win going 1 1/8 miles, earning a 99 Beyer. He couldn’t have been gutsier fighting off Normandy Invasion in the Remsen. Sire was maligned last year as being stamina deficient, but silenced critics by getting the Belmont Stakes winner. Watch what an overlay he’s going to be in the first Future Wager.


Tiz the Truth Bob Baffert

Tiznow—Truly Blessed, by French Deputy

Say hello to this new face that got lost in the weekend shuffle. After his maiden victory, you can bet Gary Stevens is happy to be back in the saddle again. From a visual standpoint, he left an indelible impression, winning by 7 3/4 lengths going a mile, earning a higher Beyer (94) than Flashback. Love the way he moves and keeps himself low to the ground. Smooth, efficient stride and was really motoring in the stretch, quickly opening up on his opponents while coming home his final two eighths in :11 3/5 and :11 4/5. In addition to being by Tiznow, he is a half-brother to San Rafael and Risen Star winner and Florida Derby runner-up Notional. Third dam won the Alcibiades and was third in the Kentucky Oaks and is a daughter of Argentine-bred Sensitivo, who won the 2 1/4-mile Display Handicap and 1 5/8-mile Gallant Fox Handicap. Fourth dam is by Champion Stakes and Queen Elizabeth II Stakes winner Hafiz, out of a daughter of Count Fleet. Just like everything about this horse.


Dynamic Sky Mark Casse

Sky Mesa—Murani, by Distorted Humor

He is still racing greenly for a colt with his experience. He was late changing leads in the Sam Davis and then ducked in from a right-handed whip that seemed to cost him just enough momentum to get beat. Breaking from the outside post and getting hung wide on the first turn didn’t help. Still like the colt, and was encouraged by his late run after he finally got in his best stride, but really need to see a forward move -- mentally more than anything. He deserves another shot, and shouldn’t be overlooked in the Tampa Bay Derby.

Off the List

Of the horses dropped from the Top 12, I still have hope for HE’S HAD ENOUGH, considering he had to switch tactics in the four-horse Robert Lewis and wound up pressuring Flashback, which is not his style at all. He tried hard all the way to the quarter pole before finally backing up. Even when he was passed in the stretch by Den’s Legacy, he continued to battle back. He needs a big field with pace and he should show big improvement…Just because PALACE MALICE was dropped from the 12 spot doesn’t mean I like him any less. After a weekend with so many brilliant performances, you have to make room for new horses. Really looking forward to his next start and stretch-out to two turns. I’ve seen nothing about him I don’t like, other than he hasn’t been two turns yet.

Knocking At The Door

Baffert pair of stakes-placed SUPER NINETY NINE and maiden winner CODE WEST put themselves in the Derby picture by finishing one-two, respectively, in a mile allowance race at Santa Anita run in a snappy 1:35 flat. The winner (by Pulpit) was much the best, winning by 3 1/4 lengths, but the runner-up (by Lemon Drop Kid) should improve with longer distances and this race under his belt…Speaking of Lemon Drop Kid, I almost put his son TREASURY BILL in the Top 12, based on his sensational maiden victory, except for the fact he’s only had a pair of sprints and also would have only four career starts before the Derby. He looks more like a Belmont horse, but remember his name. With his pedigree he had no business running so well going 6 1/2 furlongs, in which he inhaled his opponents and drew away while under wraps. Wish he had one more start or at least been a mile already…From a visual standpoint, the Claiborne-Dilschneider colt DEPARTING was very impressive in his allowance score at Fair Grounds going a mile and 70 yards. Love the way he settled back in fourth after breaking sharply, cruised to the lead without urging and quickly drew off to win by 4 1/2 lengths under a hand ride. Efficient mover and just kept widening on the gallop-out. Pace was incredibly slow (1:15), so we’ll give him another race to see what we’re dealing with. Unlike most Claiborne-breds, he does not have an ideal pedigree for classic distances, with sprinter War Front on top and a number of sprinters in his female family, including a track-record holder at 4 1/2 furlongs. Traces to the Cal-bred sprinter Hempen. But Forty Niner and A.P. Indy in third generation should help.

At least two promising horses – HONORABLE DILLON and FORTY TALES – exited the 7-furlong Hutcheson Stakes, and there is no reason why they shouldn’t stretch out, especially the former, who prevailed by a half-length, despite racing greenly down the stretch and refusing to change leads…First-time starter BIG LUTE was impressive winning a six-furlong maiden race at Oaklawn by nearly five lengths in 1:10 2/5, but he’s probably one race behind as far as making the Derby. He’d have to be rushed to get there. Trying to squeeze in three more races is going to be tough...Doug O’Neill has another nice colt in GREELEY AWESOME, who made it three in a row with a half-length allowance score at Golden Gate. They crawled early in 1:14 3/5, but he did come home his final quarter in :23 2/5 over the Tapeta surface. Former claimer still has a long way to go to be considered a serious Derby horse...Other top performances to mention are ESCAPEFROMREALITY’S excellent second in the Withers, FALLING SKY’s victory in the Sam Davis in his first two-turn race and MY NAME IS MICHAEL’S late-closing third in the Sam Davis in his 3-year-old debut, MAC THE MAN’S wire-to-wire score in the 96Rock Stakes at Turfway, and DOHERTY’s maiden score going a mile at Gulfstream…With Tiz the Truth winning so impressively, watch out for DEMONIC, who beat him a head in his career debut. Son of Bernardini, however, is way behind. Working lights out and should be ready to run in about a week…It has been reported that UNCAPTURED had suffered a bruised foot and then an abscess on his other foot and is now almost ready to start breezing on the farm. He’s being pointed for a March debut. You never like it when plans have to get altered because of minor injuries, even with such a tough, seasoned horse as this. We have plenty of time to monitor his progress.


Leave a Comment:



I'm now convinced that Verrazano is indeed a crackerjack colt.  He ran fast but gave Johnny V an armchair ride. His pedigree suggests that he'll be an outstanding miler, with inbreeding to Blushing Groom on the dam side but his obvious class should carry him farther ...we'll have to wait and see.  I've ranked him #4 on my list behind Overanalyzed, Violence and Itsmyluckyday.

Revolutionary looked very good and will certainly get a distance of ground but is not yet in the same class as Verrazano IMO.

Out in California Flashback just threw down the gauntlet ...he too is special but like Verrazano he'll have more to prove in the stamina deparment.  

04 Feb 2013 3:34 PM

Super Ninety Nine is a horse too look out for. He was very impressive for an allowance win. I am also looking forward to War Academy, he's training up a storm at Santa Anita.

04 Feb 2013 4:30 PM
Karen in Texas

Glad to see Tiz the Truth added to your list, Steve; he certainly did not get lost in the weekend shuffle for me! I, too, noticed his fluid motion and low body/head carriage. Baffert said Gary was really smiling after that run.

04 Feb 2013 4:56 PM

Every year I wait for the Tiznow colt that will win big and maybe be the next Triple Crown winner.  I LOVE Tiz the Truth - but can he improve and get enough under him in time for Derby?  I'm still mystified by Gemologist who ran a dud in the Derby after looking great and then never ran again!  What happened there, anyway?  In the meantime - here's dreaming that Tiznow fulfills my prediction years ago that he would sire the next TC winner!

04 Feb 2013 5:12 PM
Stellar Jayne

I just watched Revolutionary win the Withers, what a race!  I hope he makes it to the Triple Crown races.  Maybe Pletcher needs to give him more training in the gate.  Kudos to his sire WarPass!  I miss him.

04 Feb 2013 5:17 PM

WOW, yeah, and as you say, then there is the …“Baffert & “Pletcher barns”.

 First off, Bobby can throw into Derby mix a few we are already high on, in: “Flashback”-““Power Broker”-

“War Academy”- and “Carving” just for starters, then he can follow those up with  “Shakin It Up”-“Belvin”-“Tiz the Truth”-

“Super Ninety Nine”-“Code West”-“Title Contender”-“Manando”-“Den’s Legacy”-& “Curly Top”, and that’s all before we even get to the ones we haven’t yet seen from his barn, in: “Aleander”-“Battled”-“Coastal Breeze”-“Declassify”-“Govenor Charlie”-

“Imperial Fortune”-“Del Mar Sunset”-“Taran Taran”-“Unbridled Giant”-& “Zee Bros”, and that all so, also leaving out a few NON DERBY Nominees out there in “Really Mr. Greely” & “Rolling Fog” too boot, where there is always the ‘late pay in nominee fee..

 And then there is the Pletcher stable, where Todd can throw at us “Revolutionary”;-“Violence”-“Verrazano”-“Forty Tales”-& “Overananalyze” just for starters, then can follow those up with “Winning Cause”-“Shaler”-“El Duro”-“Park City”-“Micromanage”-“Delhomme”-“Palace Malice”-“Jack Milton” (T)-& “Charitable Kitten”, and that’s too is all before we even get to the ones we haven’t yet seen from his swimming pool training palace and pastures, in: “Abraham”-“Celebrator”-“Doherty”-“Forever Thing”-“Golden Lad”-“Midnight Taboo”-“Oistin’s Town”-“Sir Fire For”-“Tapulous”-& “Zaikov”, and that also so with his other NON DERBY Nominees such as in the likes of “Darwin”, and etc.

04 Feb 2013 5:34 PM

From the past weekend

sport writer’s, a mock early

poll Shows these rankings:

 1.)   “Violence” (50)

 2.)   “Itsmyluckyday”  (47)

 3.)   “Shanghai Bobby” (40)

 4.)   “Normandy Invasion” (38)

 5.)   “Oxbow”  (25)

 6.)  “Overanalyze” (22)

 7.)   “Flashback” (21)

 8.)   “He’s Had Enough”  (21)

 9.)  “Goldencents” (15)

10.)  “Power Broker” (12)

11.)  “Uncaptured”  (12)

12.)  “Delomme” (10)

13.)   “Revolutionary” (9)


14.)   “Forty Tales”  (2)

15.)   “Fury Kacpori” (2)

16.)   “Golden Soul”  (2)

17.)   “Dynamic Sky” (1)

18.)   “Tesseron” (1)

…with not 1 vote or mention


 “Admiral Kitten””

 “Always a Tiz”;

 “Amerigo Vespucci”;

 “Balance the Books”;  


 “Bern Identity”;  

 “Bold Dance”;  



 “Capo Bastone”;  

 “Declan’s Warrior”;  

 “Den’s Lagacy”;  

 “Dewey Square”;

 “Distinctiv Passion”;  

 “Duke of the City”;  

 “El Duro”;  


  “Falling Sky”;  

  “Fear the Kitten”;


  “Frac Daddy”;

  “Honorable Dillon”;


  “I’ve Struck a Nerve”;  

  “Java’s War”;

  “Know More”;

  “Little Distorted”;  

  “Little Jerry”;

  “Long River”;

  “Majestic Hussar”;  


  “Merit Man”;  



  “My Name is Michael”;

  “Northern Lion”;  

  “Officer Alex”;

  “Offlee Fast”;  


  “Palace Malice”;  

  “Pyrite Mountain”;

  “Quinzieme Monarque”;  


  “Speak Logistics”;  

 “Texas Bling”;

 “Tiz the Truth”;


 “Treasury Bill”;  




 “War Academy”;  

 “West Hills Giant”; or

 “Winning Cause”;

 & etc.

Yes. we have a long way to go

before May the 4th…

Thusly, my hat is off to anyone

such as Steve who already sees

a TOP 5 , 10 , or 12 or wants to

attempt to rank such and can

rank those we have seen in some

or any order at this juncture

04 Feb 2013 5:49 PM

Anyways, Departing will be heard from on this Derby trail, the maiden when was a key MSW at FG, multiple winners out of that race, including Departing. And he isn't going to be burnt up come Derby time. Unlike many runners making the noise right now.

04 Feb 2013 6:05 PM

Lots of talent beginning to show up and Flashback could be the freak but won't know until tested and big question mark for staying together given the Tapits tend to develop those niggling type issues that are training time killers. He's more robust than most Tapits, probably from the Mr. Greeley influence. Obviously has already had something going wrong health-wise as it's not like Baffert to have missed all those 2 year old stakes with a horse this fast. Maybe just bucked shins or any myriad of ailments that stops 2 year olds but a cause for concern. If he stays healthy I feel really good about his chances as he acts like a class horse before hitting the track and this cannot be overstated as the races and crowds get bigger. His efficiency of movement also impresses me and despite the pedigree, I'll go on record that he handles all the TC distances. Have to think this list will be quite different, at least in order  by Derby week but will be fun to watch as the cream starts risking to the top.

04 Feb 2013 6:15 PM

  Ok my bad, my bad,  "Shanghai Bobby" is  Pletcher trainee, your right. Sometimes I think fast while typing slow and a few erros slip in and I don't have any Secretariates here reviewing my posts, so TY for the corrections.  

04 Feb 2013 6:33 PM

I was a little surprised to see no movement in Steve's top 5 after some really remarkable performances this past weekend.

True, only the #5 colt, Revolutionary, ran last week, but his race was extraordinary.  His ability to get up for the win despite trouble from the break on, tells me he is a colt to be reckoned with in a 20 horse field.  He is a very handsome horse with a good name, which doesn't make him run faster, but is bound to earn him some fans.

Flashback was impressive as well, but his current running style is not condusive to getting a distance of ground.  Also, I'm not convinced the Tapits want to go the Derby distance and they also seem a little suspect for soundness.

Unfortunately, I missed Tiz the Truth and Verrazano.  Hopefully, I'll be able to find them in results. No question the Tiz Now colt should have no issues with distance; not so confident with the More Than Ready colt, but he certainly sounds brilliant and his female pedigree should certainly add some stamina.  For sure, More Than Ready had guts, and if he passed that on, Verrazano should be formidable if anyone can head him.

For now, I'm leaving Violence on the top of my list as well, and I can't argue with how impressive ItsMyLuckyDay has performed.  But, much as I love Shanghai Bobby, I'm convinced he won't get the classic distances and he is no longer in my top 5.  I've never seen Normandy Invasion run, but being another Tapit and with his dam's pedigree adding no significant stamina, I'm leaving him off from a pedigree standpoint alone.  And yes, I know that some of our recent Derby winners have outrun their pedigrees, but I'll still go with my preferred formula of speed and brilliance in the sire line over stamina in the dam line.  

04 Feb 2013 7:20 PM

Wow; I just got done watching the replays of the Verrazano and Tiz the Truth races and am super impressed with Verrazano.  For some reason, I thought he was a "need the lead" type, but it was clear he rated very nicely off the leader and when given a little rein, was gone, gone, gone.  He's a beautiful mover and the internal fractions and final time were impressive, to put it mildly.

Tiz the Truth looked good too and I know you can't compare times on different tracks, but his race was much slower.  However, if he can click off 24 second quarters in the Derby as he did on Saturday, he would win most every Derby ever run.  I did notice he switched back to his wrong lead late in the stretch, but he could just be a little green.

I absolutely agree with Steve, these two deserve to be moved into the top 10.  Verrazano has most definitely moved into my top 5!

04 Feb 2013 7:35 PM

It's always difficult to be patient while waiting for your new Derby list each week, Steve.  But, it's always exciting, especially after such a wild weekend.

My own Derby list has grown beyond the 3 or 4 I liked.

Violence, Transparent, Vyjack, Itsmyluckyday, Shanghai Bobby, (trained by Pletcher not Baffert, Zarvonna), Verrazano, Revolutionary, and Tiz the Truth. Oh, and Goldencents.

I simply was not impressed by Flashback.  The colts behind him were staggering after 7f.  I need to see more.

I don't know about Oxbow.  I just don't trust the Fairgrounds form any more.  After 109-1 Hero of Order took the La. Derby last year, and I considered Friesan Fire before that.  At least I first saw Ron the Greek there, who really didn't come into his own until 4.  I had high hopes for Pants on Fire, but he had his problems too.

I'm still waiting to see Demonic. There are quite a few I haven't seen yet...or haven't really noticed.  I've dropped Den's Legacy and HHE for now because I thought they were very weak in the Bob Lewis.

04 Feb 2013 7:39 PM

"You say you want a Revolution,

Well, you know

We all want to change the world.

You tell me that it's evolution,

Well, you know

We all want to change the world.

But when you talk about


You know that you can count

Violence in,

It's gonna be all right, all


After Revolution's win that Beatles' song immediately went through my head.  Like the list Steve and totally agree with the top 3 again, hard to choose between them.

If all on this list make it to the Derby it still leaves Pletcher doing the "5 saddle jig" in the paddock on Derby Day. Try getting a visual on that one!

Hope all you football fans enjoyed the Super Bowl last night.  As if not to be outdone, TVG played Zenyatta's BC Classic win where she beat Summer Bird, MTBird, Gio Ponti, Colonel John, etc.  It was awesome watching it again.  

04 Feb 2013 7:45 PM
Eric Rickard

Tiz the truth was my pick of the weekend. He just looked awesome. With Stevens and Baffert, he has the connections. I t's my Lucky Day is still visually one of the best.

04 Feb 2013 8:03 PM

Last year it was Creative Cause but yet no body talked about the horse that beat him and won the Derby.

This year Revolutionary ran a nice race but I'll keep watching "ORB"

04 Feb 2013 8:38 PM


Flashback seemed to be very airy to me, unusually light on his feet.  That, to me, seems like a rare quality for horses at this stage, perhaps, any stage. Makes me think he has a lot of power and ability and, hopefully, there's a mind of go with all that.

What do you think of War Academy?  He seems like he's got some class but I've only seen him on tv and can't quite tell ability.

04 Feb 2013 9:07 PM

What's next for Cerro?

04 Feb 2013 9:08 PM

You are correct Johnny, Orb is the forgotten horse.  Beat Revolutionary on the square but he gets no respect!  I guess it's the Pletcher factor as always.  Look, all of these horses are running brilliantly and flashing speed that kills but at the end of the day it's about substance and stamina.  Come the 1st Saturday in May you won't find those talented milers with a telescope!  Orb will relish the Derby distance, just hope Shug points him right and gets the necessary points!

04 Feb 2013 10:13 PM
Don from PA/DE

Nice overview SH, most impressive this weekend was Rev, gutsy, battle proven,  VZ awesome too his win was very similiar to 1 mile win "in hand" by Gemologist at GSP last March when he beat a grade 1 sprinter going away, was very high on GEM last year, hope this guy, these guys can stay healthy, that is the most important goal now.

04 Feb 2013 10:33 PM

Off topic but I am trying to watch cheerful things on TV:

The Puppy Bowl was adorable.  Two New Jersey shelter pups made it to the starting lineup!  And they had hedgehog cheerleaders!  Too cute.

And on an eposode of Mr. Ed:

Wilbur is putting Ed in a race against his neighbor again.  He shows Ed a thoroughbred race on Tv and Ed sees a horse getting whipped in the stretch.  Ed picks up the phone with his mouth, dials, and says, "Hello, A.S.P.C.A., give me the Wild Jockey Division!!!!!!!"

Also read a Mr. Ed movie is in th works now.

05 Feb 2013 12:05 AM
Plod Boy Phil

re: Tiz the Truth

I am simply mystified by the excitement over a February MSW winner that had as easy a trip as a horse could ever hope for.

05 Feb 2013 12:24 AM

Steve - Great analysis as usual. Just added Tiz The Truth to my list. Can't wait for Future Pool #3. If Dynamic Sky can win the TB Derby he could be 20-1 or better in future pool, overlooked. I like his potential. Always comes with a big run.

05 Feb 2013 4:47 AM

Revolutionary really wanted it -- reminded me of La Z in the Apple Blossom carving her initial in the track hunting for a seam.

Dixie Union hasn't established himself as a classic sire in these eyes. Lots of speed sires can get a colt that goes 12 furlongs in 2:30 plus.

I may owe Rags an apology for ascribing his unwillingness to go between horses to a character defect, however. I just watched him, an impressionable and reportedly very biddable young lad, trying for a seam that closed and getting slammed by the other horses as well as snatched up by his rider, heading for another opening and getting snatched off heels -- I think, unwittingly, he was TRAINED not to go between horses.

As Steve has commented, it's not just building stamina. You want them to have enough races to learn what they're supposed to in various situations.

I'd like to see the old man get another one, but Oxbow's action -- quick, flick, flick -- just doesn't say "classic" to me. Of course, they only have to beat each other.

05 Feb 2013 5:21 AM

Yes, i'll third you on Orb, but as you say he has to win major points to even get into contention.

It'll be very interesting to see which of the above 12 or so actually make it the big dance.

I remember last year all too well - the attrition rate and suspect quality was very high.

05 Feb 2013 5:47 AM

CRXN: That was the Santa Margarita where the Z was carved in the track.

05 Feb 2013 5:51 AM
Steve Haskin

Plod Boy Phil, why are you mystified? That's what we do here and what everyone does. The fun of making Derby lists is discovering new talent and projecting what they might become by May. That is done by many methods, including just watching them run and liking what you see. If you dont take a chance and go out of the box on once in a while then you're left with nothing but a list of logical horses that anyone can come up with. There are plenty of things in this world that are more mystifying than who you list at #12 on your Derby list and who you take a liking to.

05 Feb 2013 8:08 AM
Plod Boy Phil


I understand the concept. However,  there is nothing 'under the radar' about TTT despite his lone win under idyllic circumstances against a suspect field. In addition, all the horses on your list appear to be logical.

For the most part, good horses all look great when coasting on an easy lead. The final quarter that many have addressed is a function of the easy first half. Surely you can appreciate the notion that if and when he faces a more talented bunch with a legit, pressured early pace, his prospects of finishing impressively will greatly diminish.

There is no reason for me to step 'outside the box', as what's happening inside the box is just fine. The downgraded big figure MSW winner at short odds is a favorite bet against for us. TTT is no different.

05 Feb 2013 9:01 AM
Splits of 12

Of all the 3 year olds I watched this weekend, Tiz the Truth was by far the most impressive looking horse I saw hit the ground. Although Revolutionary did look good winning the Withers, I have to give the Baffert trained charge the edge. Steve, I saw the same thing you did. A horse who runs low to the ground, has a great reach, and ran splits of 12.0 for the mile distance finishing the mile in 1:36. What was even more impressive was the gallop out. There wasn't a horse within fifteen lengths of the winner. I think this one stays in California, while Flashback probably will head out to Oaklawn.

05 Feb 2013 9:51 AM
steve from st louis

Boy, what does a horse have to do to get some respect around here? Revolutionary shows he can run one furlong in the Withers while everyone else ran 8 1/2 and he still won going away. He's inbred to Bold Ruler and Nasrullah which reminds me of a big red Triple Crown winner with the same break from the gate and look around mentality. I don't pretend to know anything about herd handicapping  but it seems to me this colt will fight anyone down to the wire. If he doesn't move up this week past horses who haven't run, when will he? Oh well, I guess my Derby pick is the Rodney Dangerfield of the Derby Dozen. My told you so submission will just have to wait.

05 Feb 2013 10:10 AM
Pedigree Ann

Revolutionary was just okay on dirt last fall; he steps on the Inner and wins by 10. I need to see him run like that on real dirt before I get excited. He certainly outclassed his field, but what was there?

I think many of you are overlooking a real possible contender in Den's Legacy. He is the sort who just keeps coming. Flashback set modest (to be kind) fractions and could look great sprinting home; paid workout. Too many preps (and impressive maiden wins) these days are run that way, leaving no clue to how those winners will react when they end up in a race with a contested pace. And they make closer/grinders like Den's Legacy look slow.

Also, Den's Legacy has foundation in spades - 10 starts already. Runs on any surface, turf, dirt, AW. Reminds me of Alysheba or Giacomo.

05 Feb 2013 10:51 AM


I saw what you saw in Flashback's race except I thought the rest of the field was sort of being pulled up more so than staggering home.  They were beaten.  

05 Feb 2013 11:02 AM


To what do you attribute Oxbow's performance in the cashcall futurity?

05 Feb 2013 11:07 AM
Shelby's Best Pal

I love this time of the year when  we're just getting warmed up on the Derby Trail. Thank you for putting a smile on my face and some anticipation in my heart with your weekly Derby Dozen. It's also fun to pay attention to Off the List and Knocking at the Door.    

05 Feb 2013 11:31 AM

Why only a Dozen  Steve, I think you ought to do a Derby 20, however alliterative Derby Dozen sounds, since the race will (unfortunately) have 20 horses in it, at least 4 too many to my way of thinking.  Surely the "Extra Eight" ought to be ranked, too.  After all, it is entirely likely that the best of your Dozen will be blocked or otherwise stymied by the least of the Extra Eight on Derby Day.

05 Feb 2013 12:48 PM
Bloodline Bob

I liked my DYNAMIC SKY'S last race. If he makes it to the Ky. Derby I have no doubt that he will handle the Ky.Derby distance. I do agree with all that Mr. Haskin said about his current #12 horse this week.

05 Feb 2013 12:56 PM
Forbidden Apple

1)Itsmyluckyday 2)Flashback 3)Violence 4)Fortify 5)Orb 6)Shanghai Bobby 7)Goldencents 8)Frac Daddy 9)Revolutionary 10)Hear the Ghost 11)Demonic 12)Elmutahid


Revolutionary had trouble at the start again and was extremely lucky to find a hole late. He can not get that lucky in a 20 horse field. He is still very green, but yes he has plenty of raw talent. The time was slow and he beat absolutely nothing. My pick to beat him, Valid, had no chance after kissing the ground twice after the start. I don't get the continued knocks against Tapit, he has been nothing short of brilliant as a sire.


Flashback is robust and powerful, he carried plenty of weight and looks scary good to me. The Lewis was a workout and yes he only beat 3 other colts. Just like the up and coming filly Dance Card (also by Tapit) he looked like he was only playing, yet he romped with ease. I feel sorry for the other colts when Flashback puts his head down and is actually asked to run.

The one Pletcher horse that I needed was Forty Tales and J.V. was sleeping again.

Verrazano did run fast against no competition, he is the hype horse for no reason. When he wins a stakes race, wake me up and I'll take notice. He just reminds me of many other Pletcher runners that run huge and then uh oh, retirement comes knocking early.

Tiz the Truth is another hyped runner, beaten by Demonic, but no respect for Demonic. Same as Orb, he beat Revolutionary and he gets no respect.

The continued success of Pletcher runners will assure a square price on Itsmyluckyday yet again.

Any news on the progress of Fortify in Dubai?

05 Feb 2013 12:57 PM
Steve Haskin

Bigtex,it could be any one of a number o things. Shipping mght not be hos thing. He might not be as effective on a syntheic surface. He wa coming off a maiden win and running against seasoned stakes horses. I ant hold tat race against him.

Noelle, this is the online verion of the magazine Derby Dozen and a doxen is all they can fit in the magazine. It is a sponsored package with other features. I can, however expand the comments online, which I do and add the bottom setion.

05 Feb 2013 1:11 PM

For the last few years there have been one or two fillies that have popped up along the trail. Do you think any fillies like beholder or Dreaming of Julia will show up along the trail this year?

05 Feb 2013 1:30 PM

Great looking bunch of three year olds. like Lucas chances on Oxboro, got a feeling He's had Enough gets new jock next time out,Top jock he would of won Juvenile, Mario is very average, going to be fun watching all of them

05 Feb 2013 2:52 PM
Age of Reason

...Aaaaaand the plot thickens! I know a lot of us (including myself) went out on a collective limb last week with Derby Dozen lists chock-full of horses who were not only by and large unproven, but many of whom were also running that weekend. So, to look at it from that glass-is-half-full perspective, I actually think my twelve Derby disciples fared well. And besides, as JayJay recently noted, it's the unproven horses, the "s/he-could-be-anything" type, who put the joy and excitement in this sport more than anything else. Here's what I've got, including changes from last week to this:

(1)Itsmyluckyday (remains at #1; Elusive Quality/Doneraile Court, Plesa); (2) Belvin (up from #4; Empire Maker/Storm Bird, Baffert); (3) Violence (down from #2; Medaglia d’Oro/Gone West, Pletcher); (4) Oxbow (down from #3; Awesome Again/Cee’s Tizzy, Lukas); (5) Revolutionary (not on previous list, because believe it or not I got him confused with Delhomme. War Pass/A.P. Indy, Pletcher); (6) Normandy Invasion (not on previous list; Tapit/Boston Harbor, Chad Brown); (7) Elmutahid (down from #6; Street Cry [Ire]/Dixieland Band, McLaughlin); (8) Transparent (down from #7; Bernardini/Unbridled’s Song, McLaughlin); (9) Tiz The Truth (not on previous list; Tiznow/French Deputy, Baffert); (10) Omega Star (same ranking as previous; Candy Ride [Arg]/Fusaichi Pegasus, Shirreffs); (11) Elnaawi (down from #9; Street Cry [Ire]/Dixieland Band, McLaughlin); (12) Verrazano (no previous rank; More Than Ready/Giant’s Causeway, Pletcher); and, (13) Footbridge (down from #12; Street Cry[Ire]/Dubai Millenium[GB], Eoin Harty) makes a baker’s dozen because I just can’t write him off without seeing one more start. Off the list: He’s Had Enough, because others deserve to be up there more than him at the moment; Amerigo Vespucci, who right now just doesn’t look good enough; and Eton Blue, same.

05 Feb 2013 7:34 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


   I counted 9 typos in your last note at 1:11 PM. Be careful of absorbing typos from reverse osmosis and reverse psychology from bloggers. I too am astounded that anyone would complain about any horse at any number on any list at this stage as if they've never seen a Derby or the prep trends in their life. Keep up the good work. Did you mean to say " I can't hold that race against him, or "I ain't hold that race against him?" Did you mean "Bigtex, I didn't think YOU'D show" or "Bigtex, I didn't think you'd SHOW?"

05 Feb 2013 8:15 PM

Has anyone noticed that the camera angles for the races are changing, favoring overhead shots.

I, personally, find the angles make it more difficult to judge a colt's actual stride.  I tend to like a rail side perspective, but those shots seem to becoming rarer.

And I like to be able to see the saddle cloths, so I can tell which horse I'm following more easily.

05 Feb 2013 8:18 PM
Steve Haskin

Dr D, I typed that on my computer where the keys stick. It used to do that, then stopped, and now its started again. I didnt realize it came out so badly.

05 Feb 2013 9:10 PM

Forbidden Apple;  no argument from me regarding the brilliance of the Tapits.  What I question is, how far do they want to go?  And, do they have more soundness issues than some other of the top sire lines?  Though to be fair, colts from every sire line seem to be retired earlier and earlier, either due to injury or economics.

05 Feb 2013 9:28 PM
Plod Boy Phil

re: TtT

Did everyone forget that the first time this colt faced competition,  he relinguished the lead and win to Demonic while managing to defeat the 1st time starter Del Mar Sunrise by a half length ?

Since I'm not the horseman many here are, was his stride and head the same that day at 7f,  or did the great talent emerge with the extremely speed favoring scenario that unfolded on Saturday at 8f?

05 Feb 2013 10:12 PM
Greg R

Verrazano - "Some knock his sire's ability to get a classic horse...."

But More Than Ready's grandsires are Halo (anybody ever hear of Sunday Silence?) and Woodman (anybody ever hear of Preakness winner Hansel?).  Even though More Than Ready was not a 1 1/4 mile horse and usually gets quick horses, he carries the bloodlines to get any sort with the right combination.  This could be it.

As for Oxbow, we all need to see more, but I've long thought that it was only a matter of time before an Awesome Again won the K Derby.

Bigtex: Re: Oxbow in the Hollywood Futurity, as I still call it.  I think he's improved a lot since then.  Maybe he's still not as good as Golden Cents, but two-turning-three colts have a right to move forward in a brief amount of time and often do.  In December, he hadn't figured it out yet.  

05 Feb 2013 11:04 PM
Bill Rinker

Steve, as always thanks for an insightful Derby Dozen, it's fun reading everyone's anaylsis. This past weekends cards were very enjoyble through out, Saturday was awesome. My favorite performances were from Flashback and Tiz the Truth. Both of these horses ran nice even fractions, looked good doing it, and their riders fit them like a glove. It's nice to see horses run so under control and so well while doing it, absolutely A grade performances. Flashback looks a lot like Zazu as a three year old, (I wonder if that's how he got his name?) the Tapit, Rhumb Line cross is a masterpiece, and Lulien Leparoux seems to really understand him. When Gary Stevens turned for home on Tiz the Truth my eyes were glued to them, and man was I impressed, you could feel the power and sensation of both horse and rider moving in like kind. Verrazano showed a lot of early class, and looks like he could be a monster. Reveloutionary's race was very impressive, but a little reckless and it scared the crap out of me. I think this new point system will benefit from a little tweaking(that's a real word), but it's probably a good move. All in all I'd say this three year old crop is looking pretty good. It will be intriguing to see how well they progress in the next couple months, here's to health and safty.

05 Feb 2013 11:18 PM

  Well, with the 1st Pool popping right up and no minor 20 or 50 point winning preps until next month now, I am guessing there is some Pool interest out there. My thinking, maybe ‘there is something to what some owner was willing to pay for a horse’?--Of course, many are just looking for long term down the road stud fees unless one bought a gelding, but some had to be thinking “KENTUCKY DERBY”, just in order to allow that those eventual stud fees would rise.--Huh? So, unless you bred one whom you couldn’t sell and kept him, what were these animal’s costs as compared to others? And of course, we haven’t even yet seen the ‘million dollar boy’, “Forever Thing”, yet. Now I assume that your not flying to Vegas to place a future bet, so what odds do you want to get on your Churchill Downs FUTURE BET in Pool #1 that actually makes sense to you?

         Week # 2                            

  1st 12   Haskin’s ranking:              

 the Cost     Wynn’s Odd’s

Watchmaker’s  ranking

1.)  Violence: f. #1                  

$600K  {{c. x-1?}}          #1

 2.)   Itsmyluckyday: f. #2    

  $110K          20-1             #2

 3.)   Shanghai Bobby: f. #3    

  $105K          24-1             #3

  4.)  Normandy Invasion:  f. #4

   $230K         25-1             #7

  5.)  Revolutionary:  f. #5      

   $235K         30-1           #10

  6.) Verrazano:  f. -n/l’d      

   $250K         25-1             #4

  7.)  Flashback:   f. #7            

   $260K         22-1             #5

  8.)  Oxbow:   f. #6                  

   $250K         65-1         -n/l’d

  9.)  Goldecents:  f. #7            

    $62K          19-1             #8

10.)  Overanalyze:  f. #11      

  $380K         30-1             #6

11.)  Tiz the Truth: f. -n/l’d    

     Pvt.          175-1        -n/l’d

12.) Dynamic Sky: f. #10    

  $25K           75-1        -n/l’d


He’s Had Enough:     f. #9

 $200K          40-1  

Palace Malice,         f. #12

 $200K          40-1

Power Broker:              -n/l’d

 $360K          35-1    

                     WM = {{ #9 }}

 Forever Thing:  $1mil.   250-1

 Transparent:      $750K    85-1

 Northern Lion:  $625K  150-1

 Vyjack               $600K

 Valid                 $500K  175-1

 War Academy   $450K

 Delhomme:       $440K    75-1

 Falling Sky:      $425K  200-1

 Bold Dance       $350K  125-1

 Manando:          $300K  125-1

 Title Contender:$310K    85-1

 Uncaptured       $290K     15-1

 Treasury Bill:   $230K   150-1

 Bradester:          $195K    40-1  

 Little Distorted: $180K    85-1

 Capo Batone:   $175K      35-1

 Den’s Legacy:  $150K     85-1

 Carving:             $55K    125-1  

 Frac Daddy:       $50K      60-1

 Cerro             {$19K lbs.} 50-1

 Fortify:               Pvt.         40-1

 Dewey Square  {$575K}  65-1

 Belvin:                Pvt.        75-1

 Orb:                     Pvt.        75-1

 Majestic Hussar: Pvt.      125-1

 West Hills Giant:

…again can’t get passed

“Ve…” in Wynn’s

download. sorry.

  And, was thinking of an idea where instead of just “the field” in ‘Future Pool #1’, CD should institute a blank box pick, where you pick a horse, any horse, and get say 100-1 for starters, and if lots of people use that box and pick the same horse the odds drop a bit to 75-1 or 90-1 or whatever is appropriate, while if you’re the only one that picks that particular horse, you get him at say 250-1 or 500-1 , whatever is appropriate!!! Wouldn’t that be better that some 2-1 or -5/2 ‘field’ play bet?…

Just a thought.  

Again hoping this list all fits in and matches the formatting where I neva know.  

05 Feb 2013 11:33 PM

Steve :  I know it's tough to put together a derby dozen but was curious why Vyjack was not mentioned at all.  I don't have him on my list either but he was the top horse you had for "Knocking at the door", just wondering if you decided to drop him altogether.

Here's my dozen :

- Uncaptured - After watching his 2 previous races, I actually believe he's a legit top contender, he's very familiar with CD with his 2 wins.  I do want to see how he moves forward as a 3 yr old.  A bit concerned with his path to the derby - Rushaway stakes (not a points race) and then Bluegrass stakes.  This means he will need to win the Bluegrass to make the field which makes it iffy for me but maybe he is that good.

- Violence - Excited to see him going to the FOY - like him because he seems to fire wherever he is, doesn't matter what track.  His 3 wins came at 3 different tracks, 2 dirt and 1 AW…I've no doubt if he's healthy, he'll handle CD.

- Overanalyze - Still the best run I've seen from a 2 yr old

- Mylute - Like the way he's progressing, hope he gets to keep Rosie (don't think she'll stick with Bobby)

- Amerigo Vespucci - I'm sticking with him throughout the derby trail until I can't no more hehe, love this horse.  Hope he gets a jockey change.

- Itsmyluckyday - Nice fast races at GP but he's also won on other tracks (Calder and Monmouth), so I think he's totally legit.

- Shanghai Bobby - I think he'll win the Florida Derby, but I probably won't play him to hit the board in the Derby.  The good thing about his first loss is that he won't be a heavy favorite in the FD.  If Verrazano shows up in the Florida Derby, he'll probably run at even better odds.

- Bern Identity - Not giving up on him, will throw out his last race and wait to see where he shows up next.

- Tesseron - Anxious to see him run as a 3 yr old.

- Ground Transport - Very high on this Big Brown (Extry by Broad Brush) colt.  I'm waiting patiently where he shows up

- Belvin - I think he'll be Cali's top representative in the Derby when all's said and done.

- Palace Malice - I think he'll be one of the very few left in TP's contenders that makes the Derby, very lightly raced and I think that will be a big advantage if he makes it to the dance.

PBP : I'm wondering if this is your first triple crown by your comments.  Just an FYI, there's this thing called "Derby fever" and it's contagious but you're safe.  It only infects people who loves horses.  There's a world outside the service that you're trying to sell, it involves people going crazy about horses they pick to make (and hopefully win) the derby.  What's the prize ?  Nothing, no money, no trophy, maybe bragging rights but that's pretty much it.  I'm actually not surprised that you're mystified by it.

06 Feb 2013 12:30 AM
Steve Haskin

Jay-Jay, Knocking on the Door refers to that week. I dont write about the same horses each week in that section. Its always new horses based on that week's races. He obviously is still in the mix, but remember, the horse he beat a head in the Jerome came back to finish third in the Withers. Horses Knocking on the Door move into the Top 12 only by accomplishing something on the track. If he runs big in the Gotham he most liklely would move up.

06 Feb 2013 8:15 AM
Plod Boy Phil

The fever I have has been running wild for 30 years.  It is not limited to the Derby and BC.

06 Feb 2013 9:31 AM
Bill Rinker

Zarvona, I noticed you had Vyjack listed as a 600k purchase. I believe he went for 100k, I was at Timonium for the 2yr. old under tack sale were he was sold last year. He was one of the colts I had selected from the catalog to take a closer look at. I was impressed with him to say the least. They were going extremely fast those couple days as previous rains had the track packed tight, but still those turns are sharp. He covered three pannels in 34:3/5ths, here are my a few of my notes. Vyjack-deceptive speed, very impressive, real good mover, super connection, great presence, good all around. His win in the Jerome was a very good effort, the fractions were fairly even until the last 70yds took it's toll. He got the mile in 1:36:59 and finished up at 1:40:67, a sec. and 3/4's off the track record. Siete de Oros, who is exceptionally well bred and should cover a route of ground, put in quite a stretch run as they dueled gamely to the wire. The inner track at Big A can challenging, and that race was tougher than it may have appeared, Long River who I think was the second pick at post time and favored to win by the T.V. Handicappers, ended up 4th that day. He didn't show up at the Withers, finishing last of 8, hopefully he'll regroup and return to form. Since then I've been watching for Vyjack, and saw where he fired a minor bullet for 5 furlongs the other week.

06 Feb 2013 10:55 AM

    Yes, I know Steve, "a big sack of potatoes" like always this time of year. But i for one have to wait until these better ones go 1 1/18 and also square themselves off against real competition before I can get down to believing in a serious five and probable 'dozen' and a possible winner. Heck, I hadn’t even really gotten my ‘band wagon’ out of the garage last year before I saw the SA Derby. And, I know sometimes my posts can be lengthy and sometimes boring and sometimes are just regurgitations of the obvious. But, its nice to try to keep your bloggers informed, and amused, and thinking and to remind them we have a long way to go before the 3rd week in April and that there are more that a few “dozen” horses out there,--where by then we might have some semblance of an idea of what might happen.--Moreover, isn’t it like any other race one handicaps? and all about just trying to just predict the future? isn’t it?--… and hopefully for profit,--where we aren’t right every race or we would all be bored with it and retired doing something else. Well, yes and no. THIS IS THE KETUCKY DERBY for crying out loud, its not like any other race, IT’S THE GREATEST TWO MINUTES IN SPORTS !!!   Yeah that FEVER !! Some get it for Mardi Gras, some get it for the Superbowl, but this is the Superbowl for horse racing still, this is  THE   K E N T U C K Y    D E R BY !!…”GO baby, GO baby, GO” !! And, it’s only the first week of February still, and there are 396 Nominees, a new point system, horses we haven’t yet seen work yet, and some few we have our eyes on already and some we’re pinning favoritism hopes to already. Yeah that fever, can’t bottle it, but it surely can capture ones’ soul. {{… I got to go fishing or something and get away from researching these breeding charts,  … maybe there is something on T.V…. but damn that $725K filly “Tapicat” really looked special… wonder what her owner and trainer have in mind for her?   }} OK, Steve, are you on the phone with the likes of “Todd” and “Bobby” and asking them if the ones we haven’t yet seen are nearing ready for their coming out parties? Where is “Forever Thing” and the likes?… or do they have a few they like that are still going to keep hiding from us ??? Can you steal their secrets and their thoughts and then you share them with us ?? And the other trainers and owners too ???  WE HAVE THE FEVER and we need to know, we need to be informed. So, do what you do the best, what you always do, AND KEEP US well INFORMED !!!  GO Baby  go baby go !!! Keep up the good work Steve, you are the MAN, you are appreciated, don’t stop believing, don’t ever think we don’t value and need your insight. Yes, we search all over the web now for fragments of info all the time, but remember, ‘in STEVE we trust’. And I for one can’t wait to hear your next reports covering those other 30 some odd ‘dozens’ of Nominees. Heck, we can all  watch the 10 point prep races and gauge  a little, but we still need your insights. OK, I guess Blood Horse doesn’t give you that big a phone allowance or a large staff, but,… hey, he we can only hope … AGAIN thank you for all you do. I guess right now you’re probably off working on some new angle, so I will just go back to looking up these 250 others breeding-wise  that I haven’t yet checked out, gggrrrr… well in the words of Paul Harvey… “good day”…            

06 Feb 2013 10:58 AM
Forbidden Apple

Age of Reason,

Itsmyluckyday is by Lawyer Ron, not Elusive Quality.

Anyone, where can I find workouts from Dubai? I'm interested in the progress of Fortify.

Sad news about Soldat, he was a classy horse that never got to show his full potential as a race horse.

06 Feb 2013 10:59 AM
Steve Haskin

Zarvona, OK, see you back here in a couple of months. Untl then, we'll plod on the best we can.

06 Feb 2013 12:14 PM
It aint easy being good!

ORB ORB ORB! 75-1 Future pool yes please! Remember you cant win the derby on the lead you need to be a mid pack or deep closer that can chew up ground. Even the great bodemiester couldnt do it. Man when I watch last years derby I cant believe how big his lead was. he was 6 lengths ahead of the field.

06 Feb 2013 12:50 PM

I agree ORB!  I can see the cheap speed coming back to him. He reminds me of Real Quiet.  Speed can only take you so far in the Derby then the true stamina comes in to play.

06 Feb 2013 1:36 PM

With apologies to the songwriter, I think the weeks leading up to the Kentucky Derby are the most wonderful time(s) of the year. It is fun to try to pick who will get the 1 1/4 mile distance and who won't. And we are usually surprised by the answers.

Todd Pletcher has a barn full of talented 3 year olds that anyone would envy, but he has had this situation before and it doesn't always mean he gets even one starter into the gate on Derby Day. I do wish him well.

I have no particular horse I am high on yet. The last time I was truly excited and thought my horse couldn't be beat was when Lookin At Lucky was confirmed to run. We all know what happened there.

So, I am going to continue to read your Derby Dozen blogs, Mr. Haskin, and I am going to continue to anticipate that first Saturday in May.

06 Feb 2013 1:38 PM
Age of Reason

Forbidden Apple, thanks for pointing that out. As my old Stats professor (rest his dear soul) used to say, "Bit slip!" I've heard so many comparisons of Itsmyluckyday to Quality Road that for some reason when typing out my list I took the comparison too far in my own head and put him down as being by Elusive Quality. Also, I have Elnaawi as being by Street Cry, when actually he's by Street Sense.  Anyway, there's the retraction.

06 Feb 2013 3:00 PM

Steve : Gotcha, thanks for the explanation.  I'm not a fan of Vyjack just yet, just trying to get a hint of how you're picking your horses :)  

PBP : Again, I'm not surprised.

06 Feb 2013 3:37 PM
El Kabong

Forbidden Apple,

Well said about Soldat.

06 Feb 2013 5:21 PM


Even Ron Turcotte was aware of the possible distance limitations for Big Red because of the Bold Ruler innuendos, so what does he do?  He decides to let Secretariat get his feet under him for the first quarter because he knows no horse on the planet can beat his going the distance of a mile.

What I don't understand, and maybe you can help me with this, when you have a similar scenario with a horse like Uncle Mo or Shanghai Bobby, where distance may be an issue, why isn't there a more concerted effort in strategy by trainer and jockey to undertake something similar to what Turcotte did in the Derby with Secretariat?

I realize with a horse like Bodemeister that that strategy might be out the window but a horse like Shanghai Bobby who's infinity more talented than Mine that Bird ought to be able to take a similar approach and come home even faster than Mine that Bird (realizing the drawback is having 19 horses that could ruin your position a la Union Rag, although, Julien didn't exactly do him justice with position).

Help me!

06 Feb 2013 9:36 PM
The Pope

Mr. Haskins, what are your thoughts on Vyjack?  I'm mystified as he is not on your derby dozen. This colt has accomplished more than a horse like Tiz The Truth.

06 Feb 2013 9:53 PM

Just perusing the stats of the prep races already run looking for "signs." Goldencents has shown nice progression, from a second to two wins.  Dynamic Sky is Mr. Consistency with 2 seconds, along with Capo Bastone with 2 thirds.  He's Had Enough has shown a bit of a regression from a second to a third.  But it's early............

Interesting to see what Orb and Proud Strike (love the pedigree with one of Steve's alltime favorites in the female tail, His Majesty, remembering that photo with Mandy) will do in the future.  Favorites are still the top 3 here on Steve's list.  Hopefully this new points system works and evens out the playing field more.  I'm sure at this stage of the game many of them are still green around the edges which will even out with some maturation

and more race experience. So with this "new points system trainers' challenge" are they going to run them twice or three times before the Derby?????

Just read the news on Soldat.  Hope he heals quickly and goes on to a stud career soon.  Forbidden Appled said it best about him, thanks.

06 Feb 2013 10:35 PM

The foal to be by Tapit and Zenyatta:  

"Tapita" a combo of their names and a play on words for the surface, tapeta.  Heck, Z12 is not even named yet!

Sorry, Ole Railbird is gonna darn shoot me for digressing!  Where is he anyway, we miss him!!!!!!!

06 Feb 2013 10:41 PM

    Mr Rinker, “Bill”, actually from my own files I have “Vyjack” listed as:

              Vyjack: (g) Kty.: Tr. R.R. Rodriguez; D.I. 1.80;  

-5/11/10 foal;  $45K ‘11 FTS Kty.; $100K ’12 FTS Mid Atl.;

  3-  3-0-0 Pool #1  20-1        {{breeding rating: 190  + 15   205}}

 3 Xs bred to the ‘BHXFG’ via

1 X @ to Blossom Time; Brushup; & Mah Mahal (G.B.);

winner 6 ½ fur. Msw; Aqu.;  

winner 7 fur. $75K Traswood S.; 1:24.38 slp; Aqu.;

winner Gr. II 1 Mi 70 Jerome S.; Aqu.;

…however, Downey, from “The Downey Profile”, has “Vyjack” listed displayed as:


Trainer: Rudy Rodriguez

Owner: Pick Six Racing

Breeder: Machmer Hall

Sire (Sire’s Sire, Dam): Into Mischief (Harlan's Holiday, Leslie's Lady)

Dam (Dam’s Sire, Dam): Life Happened (Stravinsky, Round It Off)

Dosage Profile (Points) Index: 6-0-6-2-0 (14) 1.80

Foal Date: Feb. 11, 2010

$600,000 Keeneland September 2011.

A gelding.

NEXT RACE: Gotham Stakes.


On Jan. 19, Vyjack breezed four in :51.00 (17/23) at AQU.

On Jan. 27, Vyjack breezed five in 1:03.00 (1/7) at AQU.”

 … from which I extracted the value amount previously displayed in the post from, being thusly a ‘supposed’ “$600,000” “Keeneland" purchase. And quite obviously I have no clue what Downeys source was or if such was an error in posting, but that was my source.

     We all make errors occasionally, typos, transposition, occasional mixed data, etc., or whatever. Sorry, its not a perfect world and thusly I am not perfect either, as I have no other such sources to confirm all data. I am also not a police department with unlimited sources, just a horse follower and fellow blogger. Please take from my posts what you will and I do appreciate corrections when informed politely. Sometimes my posts are hurried, but please appreciate the time and effort, which goes into passing along such information that I assume everyone else is not also so collecting.

    However, if this blog has become but a forum to negatively attack other posters for whatever gratification,--such as myself and “Coldfacts” in some way now seemingly lumped together as some ‘bad guys’, which you in particular I am not accusing you of btw,--I can as always sincerely scale back my pass alongs and just keep my research, findings, opinions and knowledge to myself, as actually it is you the public that I end up betting against anyway. I just post to inform where possible to be polite to the bloggers on this site--all as I have now for some years,--to inform the not so informed who have other things to do in their lives other than research horses sevearl hours a day and post as do I. I am not perfect by a long shot,--especially just because I had the “6-19” on top of all my last year’s Derby bets, all as so displayed in my posts prior to the running of the last years Derby.--And I do read all posts on this blog, apparently contrary to the thoughts of other describers,--as this is the only blog I follow or post to where I am also a long time Blood Horse Magazine subscriber,--which I have done for over some 5 years now. And I assume my posts are easy to skip over if people see no interest in such information. I don’t however make personal attacks of others opinions or point out every poster I disagree with or respond to all others posts as to the type of post posted as I consider it is a free airway. Blocking some such negative posts is apparently not considered by those that might have blocked such as those of the uncalled for negative personal attacks. But my skin is also thick and after years now of minor dislike to hate postings against me--where I even now occasionally add to posts “no hate mail please”--it thusly has grown thicker and yet I just move on.

  So thank you for pointing out any error in my posts such as “Shanghai Bobby” being a Baffert instead of Pletcher trainee, or “Vyjack” not a $600K purchase, and/or etc., in order to even better inform all.

  Again, sorry Bill and thanks.  

06 Feb 2013 11:20 PM

Sorry, Steve.  I am not on the Facebook or the Twitter and I wanted to comment on your "They're Off" for President's Day.  Here it is:

I finally noted that you have a picture of Point Given behind you during the show.  Was that a picture of Northern Dancer behind Stable Boy?  (I hope so.  If Steven can tout his favourite, can't I tout mine?)

07 Feb 2013 10:18 AM

Just checked out the DRF top 20.  Someone should tell them that He's Had Enough is NOT by Indian charlie, but by Tapit.  

I went back and re-watched The Bob Lewis several times.  Still believe Flashback has the motion of a sprinter...much like Uncle Mo who raised his knees quite high with each step.  I prefer an economy of motion, a more efficient stride for a colt to go a classic distance.  (To Honor and Serve and Rogue Romance both had that type of skimming motion, expending very little energy with each stride.)

I still think Valid is a colt to watch.  It's so difficult for a young colt to recover from a stumble as bad as he had, and be able to get back in the race.  As far as breeding goes,...similar to Violence who everyone seems to adore, including me.

07 Feb 2013 10:22 AM
Ida Lee

As always, fun article to read and I very much enjoy reading the comments. Please remember this is a sport and a game. It's supposed to be fun. I don't own a horse and I don't train one; I don't ride them or bet on them, etc. I love all horses because they're beautiful especially a TB in motion. My Derby horse is Shanghai Bobby.I fell in love with him the first time I saw him. He's gorgeous, moves beautifully, is talented and has what I  call "sweetness of expression". I'll scream my head off for him but do I think he's the best candidate to win...I don't know...he might be; I don't study pedigrees, win-lose percentages or anything that will give me a hint; it really doesn't matter. This is about having a special horse for you to cheer for. If he wins, wonderful; if he doesn't, as long as all horses come back safe, I'll be fine and in the process had a great time cheering for my boy. The above list is fine and I'll give it some thought because it was put together by someone who is much more knowledgable than me in this area but if I don't agree with the list for some reason, doesn't matter. I love the KD and I'll have fun watching my boy "Bobby" no matter what.

07 Feb 2013 12:16 PM
Pedigree Ann

Going into the Derby, Ferdinand had won only a stakes races for non-SWs, been 2nd in the G2 8f San Rafael, and 3rd in the Hollywood Futurity and Santa Anita Derby, both of which were won by the brilliant Snow Chief. However Ferdinand was an improving colt, a slower maturer, and one better suited to a truly run 10f than Snow Chief, who wilted in the stretch.

Alysheba had won only his maiden race at 2, although he placed second in the Breeders' and Hollywood Futurities. At 3 he didn't finish first in a stakes race until the Blue Grass, but lost the race in the stewards' room. So he came into the Derby with only one official win, but he was an improving colt, and one with a firm foundation.

War Emblem had not won or placed in a stakes race at 2, although he won 2 of 3. He made several unsuccessful starts in New Orleans over the winter, then moved north come March and aired in an n2x race at Sportsman's. Then he took on a top Derby contender in Repent in the Illinois Derby and ran him into the ground (Repent hurt a knee in the race).

Animal Kingdom did not win a race at 3 until the end of March.

My point? The horses who are 'hot' in February, like Snow Chief, frequently aren't the ones who are in the winner's circle in May. Being beaten in mid-winter prep races does not mean a horse has no shot in the Derby.

07 Feb 2013 12:39 PM
Dr Drunkinbum


   The proof is in the pudding unless they throw a monkey wrench into it then the pudding doesn't amount to a hill of beans. I hope that clarifies how to pick a Derby winner.

07 Feb 2013 2:52 PM

Pedigree Ann,

You go girl!  Great post 07 Feb 2013 12:39

07 Feb 2013 5:02 PM

Changing the subject, I was looking up the pedigree of Itsmyluckyday, who Shanghied Bobby at the Holy Bull Stakes.

We all know that his sire was Lawyer Ron; Lawyer Ron's maternal grandsire was Lord Avie. Lord Avie recently died at the grand old age of 36.

His dam's family has a lot of class. His dam was Viva La Slew, out of Doneraille Court, a son of Seattle Slew. Viva's dam was Viva La Viva and the latter's dam was Viva La Sec out of Secretariat. And Viva La Viva's sire, Crafty Prospector, was out of Mr. Prospector.  

I am so happy for Eddie Plesa Jr., Elvis Trujillo, and the owners of this horse. This is their first Derby horse. What an amazing opportunity this is for Plesa and Trujillo.

07 Feb 2013 5:51 PM
Little Bill


LOL. Yeah, all those cliches cleared it right up. I'm gonna go to the crystal ball.

07 Feb 2013 6:48 PM

It was just last year that some of the pundits on this blog were in disbelief(because they didnt have him in the future wager) of the fast rise of Bodemeister.The excuse was he already ran too fast, he dosent have the foundation,he will bounce in the Derby,he dosent have the right style to win the Derby yada yada yada.Folks he dosent need to be seasoned(hes not on the menu) nor does a colt require a foundation(his trainer is not building a skyscraper)This year is setting up to be a Derby of colts that have only won one prep as a 3yo so I look forward to the same rhetoric.I think the starting gate will be composed of a majority of colts with 3yo form and a minority of colts with 2yo form,thats the way I see it playing out so many weeks beforehand.

07 Feb 2013 7:05 PM

Karen from Texas do you know where I can find the birtdates for the pool 1 list for the Derby future wager?

07 Feb 2013 8:08 PM
Rusty Weisner

Pedigree Ann,

Funny Cide was another of those horses.  He hadn't won as a three-year old until the Derby.

Though he was a gelding, I hadn't realized he went on to have such a long career after his Triple Crown season.

07 Feb 2013 8:21 PM

  Why,  I cant and don’t get excited early.

  Gee , “Varrazano”, toted as the  ‘ ½ brother ‘of “El Patrino” runs a fast high Beyer rated mile over the Gulf Stream track as a  young three year old, all much as “El Patrino” dazzled us last year at 1 1/16 and even at a 1 1/8 . And yes, Pletcher ran “El Patrino” enough to qualify him in the Kty. Derby. all much as I am sure he will attempt to run “Verrazano”.  OK, now they both had the same mommy in “Enchanted Rock”, which qualifies them both to be multiple times bred to “BHXFG” strain,--in fact 7Xs for “El Patrino” and 8X’s for “Verrazano”.--But, from their daddy’s lines who do you think is straight up better suited for distance, “Pulpit” ? or “More than Ready” ? Well, I would say “Pulpit” by nearly double in rating points, my rating system. Thusly, Steve can put “Verrazano” in his top 10; and Watchmaker can make him #2 if he wants to; Coolmore can invest in him as a down the road money maker; and Battaglia can make him 15-1 for the Derby Pool?? (really ??) , but boyz and galz, re the KENTUCKY DERBY, “El Patrino” finished,--if memory serves me,--13th in his Kentucky Derby attempt !!! So even if “Varrazano” does get in, just where do you really expect him to finish ???  And there will be Pool bets as such made on him from all the current sport writer’s hype and his fast little one time run and high Beyer from thousands who don’t follow this blog. But, they won’t get a penny on him from me in any Pool or in the Derby should he get in a gate, even if once upon a time “Giacomo” won.

  Again, we have seen only the BC Juv and a couple of Gr. III qualifying preps and some Maiden runs. And there are plenty other horses out there already that rate out higher for 1 ¼ than “Varrazano”, and that’s why I pay attention to pedigree and don’t jump on a ‘miler’s’ bandwagon in February.

  And that all so, “SLEW”, WHETHER YOU LIKE MY POSTS OR NOT  …..  

  And TY Steve for sharing exactly where I got the supposedly errant figure on “Vyjack” from,--"THE DOWNEY PROFILE"-- which apparently makes me look bad, --but what’s new in that respect.--Although re these last two thoughts, it won’t both me if they are not shared.

07 Feb 2013 8:30 PM
Paula Higgins

My top 6 right now are Violence, Revolutionary, Verrazano, Flashback, Tiz The Truth and Shanghai Bobby. Way too soon to really have a handle on who will make it to the Derby. Too many things can happen and sadly, do. Half the battle is keeping the horses healthy.

07 Feb 2013 9:41 PM
Karen in Texas


You're asking about the 23 horses in the Pool 1 list? Equibase has a profile page for each horse with date of birth, owner, etc. Any source with a 5x pedigree should show a DOB as well.

07 Feb 2013 10:46 PM

the birtdates for the pool 1 list for the Derby future wager?

CHIEF PICAWINNA 07 Feb 2013 8:08 PM.

Foal Dates; 2010 of course.



Wagering Interest



Capo Bastone 4-25



Code West 4-12



Delhomme 3-04



Den's Legacy 1-28



Dynamic Sky 5-10



Falling Sky 4-17



Flashback 4-12



Frac Daddy 3-05



Goldencents 3-07



He's Had Enough 4-22



Itsmyluckyday 3-18



Mylute 2-26



Normandy Invasion 5-02



Overanalyze 4-30



Oxbow 3-26



Revolutionary 2-20



Shanghai Bobby 2-27



Super Ninety Nine 4-10



Uncaptured 3-19



Verrazano 1-27



Violence 3-21



Vyjack (g) 2-11



Will Take Charge 4-13


07 Feb 2013 10:58 PM

Dr. D : LOL, yep, that pretty much sums it up.  This is the first time I've tried following 2 yr olds and had Palace Malice and Know More as 2 that I chose to follow.  Palace Malice had a set up and Know More looks more like No More.  It's hard picking potential derby candidates, let alone derby winner.  As impressive as the winners were last weekend, it's just way too early to start putting them up on my list.  I'm sticking with the ones that already have points and a few that I really like based on how they ran their previous races and of course pedigrees.

It's a quiet weekend, at least I can re-load a new batch of brain cells to get me ready for next week's preps.  Hope things are going well with you !  

07 Feb 2013 11:57 PM
Ted from LA

Dr D.,

How do you get your posts through the censors?  I recently wrote the most mundane post and it vanished.  mz, are you going to the Derby this year?  I want to buy you a mint julep.  I have been saving my pennies all year in order to do so.  Overanalyze and Varrazano have my attention.

08 Feb 2013 12:18 AM

I just wanted to make some corrections about my comments on Itsmyluckyday and his trainer. Eddie Plesa, Jr., did have a filly run in the Ky Derby named Three Ring. And Viva La Viva's sire was Crafty Prospector out of Mr. Prospector.

Incidentally, Laurie Plesa, the wife of the trainer and a co-owner of the horse, is a sister of John Servis; Servis trained Smarty Jones.

08 Feb 2013 4:16 AM
Eric Rickard

Why all the disrespect for Snow Chief. It was derby debacle, but he did come back to win the Preakness. Does that philosophy apply to Point Given? If so, than his subsequent races did not matter. I mention Tiz The Truth because he looked good and he has Gary as a jockey. I too am waiting for tougher races. Its My lucky day seems like an improving sort. Shanghai was very impressive off the shelf.

08 Feb 2013 11:07 AM

Zarvona: It's not a matter of my liking your posts or not.  It's simply a matter of accurate information.

And the colt's names are Verrazano and El Padrino.  

I actually love your passion and enthusiasm.  Keep posting...just take your time to get it right.

08 Feb 2013 11:57 AM

Ted, unfortunately this year is the second niece's trip to Paris (at the aunts' expense --  she's finishing her degree AND she now eats mushrooms, which were a tough sale when she was 6).  C'est domage!

And we now aren't getting any pennies anymore so if you keep saving them for next year, they're going to be worth maybe 1.5 cents then!

Will you put $2 on Dynamic Sjy or Uncaptured if theyr're in the gate?

08 Feb 2013 12:51 PM

OK thanx alot DerbyGal and TY Karen In Texas.

08 Feb 2013 3:32 PM

BTW derbygal show me where you fish so to speak, and tell me where you got the birthdates from.

08 Feb 2013 3:36 PM

Karen In Texas just dropped a hook at the equibase site TY again.

08 Feb 2013 3:40 PM

lol ...$12K plus bet on "Verragano"

day 1 in Pool #1 now @ 7-1 the FAVORITE outside of the "the field" at -6/5.

And I falied to mention that "El Pradrino" was 13th and three of those he beat broke down!!!

Well, they bet against me on the Derby too and my winner went off at 19-1 from the 19 post !!!

 Told ya ... they live on the sports writers hype and a fast Beyer  ... although even Steve did point out "Some knock his sire’s ability to get a classic horse...", which I took to mean beat a 'classic horse' at the 1 1/4 distance.

09 Feb 2013 4:21 AM
Pedigree Ann

Eric - I loved Snow Chief - he was an overachieving Calbred, with an Argentine damsire. But there is no doubt that after working forward to the tiring leaders Groovy and Zabaleta (sprinters both), he himself started to go backward in the final quarter mile. He couldn't even keep up with Broad Brush, who made a similar move and held on for 3rd.

Snow Chief did come back at 4 to win the Real Strub at 10f, but he was able to lead all the way in that one, as he liked to do. Having to run with specialist sprinters early in the Derby wore him out too much.

09 Feb 2013 2:53 PM
Pedigree Ann

I want to clarify what is meant by 'foundation' and 'seasoning'. It means having been trained up to the point of being able to race at 2, early or late. The physical changes that such training and racing make in bone density and muscle development is extraordinarily difficult to replicate in the short time available to the unraced 3yo.

This seasoning does not mean the horse has to be a SW or even a winner.

Monarchos raced twice late at 2 and was third once. He broke his maiden and won an An1x early at 3, then won the Florida Derby in spectacular style.

And need I point out that despite his brilliance and talent, Bodemeister did NOT win the Kentucky Derby? A colt who had raced decently in the summer at 2, then had several months off before a mid-winter return, did.

09 Feb 2013 3:09 PM

  I am not amazed “Verragano” went off at low odds from his recent 1 Mi. 105 Beyer showing and the sport writers’ hype,--re my previous post,--but finishing as the favorite outside the ‘field’ is a damn shock!!!  “Revolutionary”; “Violence”; and “Flashback” all look more appealing. And heck, “Uncaptured” and “Super Ninety Nine” and his own 100 Beyer figure along with the ‘sky boys’, Casse’s trained “Dynamic Sky” and Terranova’s trained “Falling Sky”,--99-1 ?? really ?, would have seemed to me as more solid plays,--and in fact, even “Frac Daddy” also, all look better suited to the ‘classic distance’ to me, and then there is always “Itsmyluckyday” and “Shanghai Bobby”. So, the highly so toted “½ brother of

“El Padrino” gets the most action?  Mild shock here. However, that must make those that wagered on others much more happy campers.

  And, I was thinking afterward, that if “Violence” wins his next race, we will never see 13-1 again !!!

11 Feb 2013 5:20 AM

  Now if we could only get an IQ reading on all these 396 nominees, I think I would have an easier time attempting to find a real ‘dozen’ or twenty or so to place on top. And that so, because so far in my eyes, the so highly toted McLaughlin trainees in “Transparent” and “Valid” and even in “Long River” and now “Israal” have all come off looking like near retards so far all. So, good luck in the UAE with “Fortify”.  And, if that’s the indication thus far from ‘the McLaughlin group’, what are we really suppose to expect from “Einaawi”, “Elmutahid”, Virginia bred “Maleeh”, and “Now and Then”? Thusly, if “Fortify” doesn’t run one or two at Meydan, where is McLaughlin’s Derby hopeful going to come from ?  

11 Feb 2013 5:21 AM

  From the “Potato Sack”, not the greatest weekend start for Derby Nominee hopefuls and beginning starters: “Declan’s Warrior”; “Freedom Child”; “Israal”; “Jack Milton”; “Little Distorted”;

“Pyrite Mountain”; “Tapulous”; “Track Rocker”; “Wabbajack”; or “War Dance”. And yet, although it seemed all tracks were running a bit slow or the horses were, kudos to “Park City”, 6 ½ fur. winner, and…Msw  1   1/16 winners “Perfect Title” & Saint Vigeur”, and actually, “Perfect Sets” …Msw  1  1/8  in for 3rd in at only +1 ¼  back of the winner at 1:48.88; actually wasn’t too shabby a showing, possibly making him another to keep an eye on.

11 Feb 2013 5:22 AM
Pedigree Ann

Looks like my last comment is still bouncing around in the ether.

Erik, no hate on Snow Chief. Heck, my specialty is Calbreds and California bloodlines. Snow Chief was an excellent horse who won his races running on the lead. But that style led to his downfall in the Derby; he couldn't get the lead against Groovy (future champion sprinter) and Zabaleta (a sprinter/miler), tracked their overfast fractions, and had nothing left when the real running started. That was why a horse he had beaten twice already, a later developer and a true distance horse, could beat him in the Derby. That's what happens in this race.

11 Feb 2013 2:24 PM

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