Striking Similarities Between Bayern and Paynter

By J. Keeler Johnson ("Keelerman")

There’s no denying that Kentucky Derby winner California Chrome will be an overwhelming favorite to win the Preakness Stakes (gr. I) at Pimlico this Saturday, and trying to find a longshot that can beat him will likely prove fruitless.

But in my opinion, there is a horse pointing toward the Preakness Stakes that should not be overlooked, for if history repeats itself, he could be sitting on major step forward this Saturday. The horse is Bayern.

Granted, Bayern’s race record to date—although very good—doesn’t really suggest that he is capable of taking down California Chrome at Pimlico. He began his career with a pair of eye-catching victories at Santa Anita Park, winning a seven-furlong maiden race by 3 ¼ lengths and a one-mile allowance race by 15 lengths. A foot bruise derailed him from a planned start in the San Felipe Stakes (gr. II), and surely left him a bit underprepared for his run in the Arkansas Derby (gr. I) on April 12th. In that race—his first in two months—Bayern set a reasonable pace for six furlongs before tiring a bit in the final quarter mile, finishing third by 5 ¼ lengths. Two weeks later, with an impressive workout at Churchill Downs under his belt, Bayern went to post as the heavy favorite for the Derby Trial Stakes (gr. III), where he led from the start to finish first by a nose in tenacious fashion, only to be disqualified for interfering with the runner-up in the homestretch.

If you’re wondering how a colt that has yet to officially win a stakes race or earn a triple-digit Beyer speed figure could possibly unseat California Chrome in the Preakness Stakes—a race that will mark his third start in five weeks!—just examine the record of a colt named Paynter.

Like Bayern, Paynter was trained by five-time Preakness-winning trainer Bob Baffert, and also like Bayern, Paynter began his career with an eye-catching maiden victory sprinting at Santa Anita Park. Off of this impressive performance, Paynter was entered in the 2012 Santa Anita Derby—yes, the Santa Anita Derby, and after just one start!—where he finished fourth by 3 ¾ lengths behind subsequent Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another. Three weeks later, with an impressive workout at Hollywood Park under his belt, Paynter went to post as the heavy favorite for the Derby Trial Stakes, where he helped set a fast pace before tiring and finishing second by 1 ½ lengths.

Interestingly, it was at this time—building on his hard run in the Derby Trial—that Paynter underwent a metamorphosis from a colt of merely respectable caliber to one of the best colts of his generation. Three weeks after the Derby Trial, Paynter crushed an 8.5-furlong allowance race at Pimlico by 5 ¾ lengths, then wheeled back in the Belmont Stakes (gr. I) and was beaten just a neck after leading from the start. In his final start of the year, Paynter dominated the Haskell Invitational by 3 ¾ lengths, stopping the clock for nine furlongs in a quick 1:48.87 seconds.

Now tell me—in the aftermath of Paynter’s defeat in the Derby Trial, would you have ever guessed that he would finish second in the Belmont Stakes six weeks later?

I admit that comparing Bayern to Paynter isn’t exactly comparing apples to apples. They are two completely different horses, and while their careers thus far have been strikingly similar, there’s no guarantee that Bayern will undergo the same metamorphosis that Paynter did in the summer of 2012. My point is that while Bayern would need to take a major step forward to win the Preakness, supporters of the colt can take heart in the fact that there is a recent precedent for such an improvement.

Stepping away from the Preakness for a moment, I would like to mention that entries for Pimlico’s Friday card were drawn recently, and the fields for the seven stakes races have come up very strong. In particular, I am really looking forward to the $300,000 Pimlico Special Stakes (gr. III), in which 2013 Travers Stakes (gr. I) runner-up Moreno and 2013 Kentucky Derby third-place finisher Revolutionary are the highlights of a nine-horse field.

On Thursday, after post positions for the Preakness are drawn, I will put up another blog post with my selections for the Preakness Stakes. But in the meantime, I would love to hear your thoughts on Bayern, California Chrome, and the other potential Preakness starters!


Leave a Comment:

Rusty Weisner

"Now tell me—in the aftermath of Paynter’s defeat in the Derby Trial, would you have ever guessed that he would finish second in the Belmont Stakes six weeks later?"


Only problem was I bet him to finish first that day.

I don't think the Preakness is the right spot for Bayern; Paynter won that allowance race on the Preakness undercard, a workout for the Belmont.

13 May 2014 4:34 PM

I see Social Inclusion as a possible monster in the making. Bayern, not so much.

13 May 2014 4:50 PM

Rusty Weisner;

You've got a good point -- Bayern may very well be one race removed from a peak performance, and running in the Preakness is definitely a more challenging task than running in an allowance race. But even still, I think the Derby Trial was a race that Bayern can build on, and although I would be surprised if he beats California Chrome, I think he has a terrific chance to prove second-best on Saturday.

Outside of California Chrome, I'm finding this year's Preakness Stakes rather tough to decipher. At the moment, I'm leaning toward California Chrome, Bayern, and Dynamic Impact, as my top selections, but there are at least five or six other horses that I think could finish in the top three. What's your take on the chances of Kid Cruz?

13 May 2014 4:52 PM


I'm not sure what to make of Social Inclusion, but I heard that his last workout was exceptional, with a quick time and a very strong gallop-out. If he draws inside of the other primary speed horses, such as Pablo Del Monte and Ring Weekend, I think he could take the Preakness field a long way on the front end.

On a side note, Bayern's blinkers will be removed for the Preakness, in an attempt to get the colt to sit off of the lead. So that's one less potential front-runner in the field, although I don't expect Bayern to be too far behind early on.

13 May 2014 5:01 PM

I think both Bayern and Social Inclusion have a decent shot at winning. Both are exceptional-looking colts, reasonably well-bred, and appear to be brimming with ability. Distance and experience are the issues, as otherwise they're likely better colts than California Chrome. I pick Bayern to win.

13 May 2014 5:18 PM

I see a lot of early speed and if there is,it might get a little out of control like 21,44,108 n that will open the door for another senario to develop such as a young colt named Kid Cruz coming out of the clouds to mess everything up.  However, if the race is smooth and remains pacy then I see California Chrome winning and heading for the third Jewel.

13 May 2014 5:59 PM

The Preakness will be Social Inclusion's official coming out party. He turns for home on top and its a done deal catching a colt running like the wind. California Chrome and Bayern shoyld follow him home.

13 May 2014 6:27 PM

When War Emblem entered the Belmont starting gates in his quest for the Triple Crown the race was subsequently won by longshot Sarava sired by Wild Again. When California Chrome enters the starting gates in the Preakness one of his opponents will be Bayern a colt sired by a son of Wild Again. Can another horse from the Wild Again sire line take down another short price favorite in a TC race? I would not put it beyond Rosie to get him home in front as she has nerves of steel and the colt has the credentials.

The two horses that finished ahead of Bayern in the AK Derby finished 3rd and 7th in the Derby with troubled trips. When he faced them it was his 3rd start with less than ideal preparation. Despite this he showed guts and determination in defeat.  Bayern contested the Derby Trials 14 days after the AK Derby and again showed grit and determination in a bumping contest with a colt he reversed positions with.

Nine day after his Derby Trial battle he worked 5F in 58.20 at CD. This colt has to be very fit and I agree he must be sitting on a big race. His sire won the 10F Suburban and his dam sire won the KD, Belmont & Travers. It is therefore likely he will be comfortable at the Preakness distance of 9.5F.

Speedy Bob has won the Preakness 5 times. All his winners contested the Derby. Bayern résumé does not reflect the Derby. Will this disqualify him from winning? He enters the Preakness fresher than all of Speedy Bob’s 5 winners but his odds of winning are not good. In the last 30 renewals of the Preakness only 4 winners did not contest the Derby.

The 2014 renewal of the Preakness has 7 horses that did not contest the Derby. The odds are good for one of the 7.  

13 May 2014 6:27 PM

Ring Weekend qualified for the Derby with his commanding victory in the Tampa Bay Derby but was unable participate due to illness. Subsequent to his TBD victory, he was defeated by Our Caravan in the Calder Derby by 9L. Our Caravan was a no show in the Peter Pan. Why would the connections of this gelding enter him in the Preakness? On paper he should have absolutely no chance.

I have a lot of respect for Graham Motion and I do not think he would enter this gelding if it was not going to be competitive. I ranked Ring Weekend TBD victory above that of Street Sense who finished 2nd in the Preakness. I have never seen a horse separate itself from a TBD field the way Ring Weekend did. I was of the opinion he would have come back to the field but he kept his form to win unchallenged. The speed he displayed in the TBD was surprising as his body type did not suggest he possessed that type of speed. I think his class was on display and I consider him a classy unknown.

I doubt he will be able lead the Preakness field but he certainly has the tactical speed to stay close and the pedigree to stay 9.5F. His trainer has a history of winning the big ones at long odds and I am going to side with this colt as a small wager will provide a large return should he spring the upset.

13 May 2014 6:51 PM

This horse is no paynter who himself was nothing special on the race track (2:30 Belmont with Union Rags was plow horse time). Three starts in five weeks, he'll be lucky to hit the board truthfully.

13 May 2014 6:55 PM

Again, I think we should all put our minds, hearts and souls in with California Chrome, as it will help him achieve the triple crown... it is that simple, we all have to wish it, to get it. If he is or not the horse to achieve it, should be something left for him and destiny, and not for any influence of our negative or contradictory thoughts and vis-a-vis energy. I want a triple crown winner, even if he had three legs, we want it!!!

13 May 2014 7:21 PM


What you are suggesting bordering on lunacy.

Do you think the connections of the opponents of California Chrome are interested in seeing the 12th Triple Crown winner? They are interested in winning a Triple Crown race and the $900,000 1st place portion of the purse.

Gamblers want a longshot to win so they can make a bigger return on their investments. If a TC winner comes along everybody will applauded but nobody is going to roll over and make it happen.

Keep it real!

13 May 2014 7:59 PM

I'm not buying that snake oil here in south Florida. This track down here that we have, the autobahn, maybe you also know it as gulfstream park. These NTR times are a joke! Its a new configuration suited to speedy types to inflate speed numbers, with the shorter stretch run to finish line.I just don't see the hype or appeal. And I'll be very curious to see how horses that have trained here this spring, train here next spring. How many horses has this track beat up? Just saying....

13 May 2014 8:57 PM


Thanks for your thoughts! I am also intrigued by the chances of Ring Weekend, and I agree that Graham Motion seems confident that the colt is sitting on a big race. I'm willing to excuse Ring Weekend's poor showing in the Calder Derby and chalk it up to a poor trip on an unfamiliar surface, and hope he runs back to his Tampa Bay Derby effort in the Preakness. Whether he is good enough to compete with the best of his generation is certainly open to question -- the horses he beat in the Tampa Bay Derby have not run well since -- but I think he has a shot to hit the board if he can work out a good trip.

13 May 2014 10:41 PM

WOW! Hardly a peep about Tonalist............Do you people know what you saw?..........This is a very very good horse!

13 May 2014 11:08 PM
JJs Rocket

Something tells me that Bayern has distance limitations. Bob is taking the blinkers off because he knows he has to stalk to have a chance to win this race. Social Inclusion will be very dangerous in this race. I think he will be on the lead all the way to the stretch. Ring Weekend simple isn't fast enough to push Social Inclusion. He freaked on a funny Tampa Bay surface that I wont bet he can repeat again. Pablo Del Monte is a Keenland front running freak. He has been on the lead in all three of his races there. To bad for Pablo this isn't in Kentucky.

   The horses from the Wood showed up pretty well in the derby and Social Inclusion got a little tired from that tiring track. They were running into a 35 mph wind down the stretch. This race he will end up being the long speed and very dangerous if nobody runs beside him. Just box the exacta with CC and you can cover some of your other exotic bets. ROC will be either 3rd or 4th so hitting the super should be easy.

On another note the derby time for CC is a non factor. IF you watch the derby carefully the track was really dry by the time the race went off. Watch the feet of all the horses and see all the dust coming up going down the front stretch to the first turn. Then look at the last 10 years of derby front stretch starts and you will notice more dust than normal. That's why the race was slower than the earlier races that day in my opinion. May all the horses come home happy and safe.

14 May 2014 12:00 AM
Pedigree Ann

i812many - I call it Stronach Speedway East (Santa Anita is the Western outpost). I just can't take those races at face value. Horses that run from behind have no shot to win in most of the races run there, especially at two turns. The fact that late runners Wicked Strong, Intense Holiday, and Danza shipped out of town to win preps doesn't compliment the winners in Florida - it compliments the other surfaces, which are fairer to all styles of running.

14 May 2014 2:46 AM

If Chrome is fit and takes to the track, I can't see him losing the Preakness regardless of who is in there.   We all handicapped and anticipated a lot of speed in the Derby and it never materialized.  I think PDM will go with Social Inclusion and set a fast pace but I can't see either lasting.  Chrome takes over near the top of the stretch and canters home, with General A Rod, Tonalist in tow...Kid Cruz cruising home for 4th.   I'm not going to play the Preakness that much, except for the P4 where I will single CC.   I might play a $2 super with CC / GAR, Tonalist / GAR, Tonalist / Kid Cruz.. for a $4 investment.

14 May 2014 3:30 AM
Rusty Weisner


Keelerman's previous column was about Tonalist.

14 May 2014 7:47 AM
Rusty Weisner


I'm also not sold on Baffert's second string generally this year.  I'll let Bayern beat me.  Maybe the Haskell?

14 May 2014 7:48 AM
Rusty Weisner

I think I'm going to take my own advice and take the two Derby horses with good form.  I'll have a slightly more than rooting interest in CC with maybe a $20 straight exacta CC/ROC.  

I don't really know who to like otherwise, and there might be a few cents in going against Social Inclusion.

14 May 2014 7:52 AM
Rusty Weisner


Tonalist just won the Peter Pan in preparation for the Belmont and isn't in the Preakness.  Correct me if I'm wrong.

14 May 2014 7:53 AM


“If Chrome is fit and takes to the track, I can't see him losing the Preakness regardless of who is in there.”

Interesting assessment! If he were to lose it would be due to either one or both of the above reasons. The victor would not be given credit for defeating him on the square. Each time a horse enters the starting gates it can be defeated. The reasons for its defeat can vary but in most instances it finds a better opponent on the day.

Derby winners have contested the last 10 renewals of the Preakness and only 3 passed the post in front. Did the 7 losing Derby winners either lack fitness or did not take to the track? Those defeated included the likes of Animal Kingdom, Street Sense and Orb who were far more impressive Derby winners than CC.

The above trend clearly suggests that Derby winners have been vulnerable over the last 10yrs. During this period horses that either hit the board or finished down the track have won the Preakness 5 times. Can either Ride on Curlin or General A Rod rise to the occasion and defeat CC? Neither ran the race they were capable of in the Derby. Ride on Curlin was given an impossible task by his rider and based on Danza’s trouble 3rd place finish he could be the one to perform the best of the Derby also rans.

Horses that did not contest the Derby have won twice in the last 10yrs. Is there a either a Bernardini or Rachel Alexandra in the in this group? Social Inclusion has a ton of ability but in my opinion needs a different trainer. He certainly has the best credentials to win from this group. Beranrdin did not have the graded earning to enter the Derby and Ring Weekend had the point but got sick. Ring Weekend is a classy colt despite his less than stellar record and is in the hands of a dangerous conditioner.

California Chrome is the class of the field but if we are to be guided by the historic trend of the last 10yrs, he is certainly not invincible.

“I think PDM will go with Social Inclusion and set a fast pace but I can't see either lasting.”

Shackleford and Louis Quatorze went gate to wire and they contested the Derby 14 days earlier. The likely leaders cited above are fresh horses with talent and one could go all the way. CC did not reproduce his crazy SA speed figure at CD and the 2014 Derby was strange to say the least.

14 May 2014 9:25 AM

JJs Rocket,

“Something tells me that Bayern has distance limitations”

California Chrome was defeated the first time he contested races over 7F & 8F. He had previously won at 4.5F & 5.5F. Would you have concluded he was either a sprinter or had distance limitation since he lost at the longer distances?

Bayern lost his 1st race over 9F as the favorite. It was his 1st attempt at the distance in his 3rd start. It was also at a new venue and against graded stakes winners.

He returned 14 days later to win over a mile and again it was at a new venue. CC left California after making 10 starts and contested 9F in his 10th start as opposed to Bayern attempt in his 3rd.

Bayern’s sire won at 10F and his dam sire won at 10F & 12F. Whilst this does not mean he will be some super router, he has shown enough to suggest that he will effective the Preakness distance.

“Ring Weekend simple isn't fast enough to push Social Inclusion. He freaked on a funny Tampa Bay surface that I won’t bet he can repeat again”

The above suggest Ring Weekend can only win by leading. His pedigree is not that of a sprinter type. He appeared fresh in his TBD victory while recording internal fractions rarely seen in that stakes. Street Sense holds the Stakes Record for the Tampa Bay Derby.  Ring Weekend set faster fractions for the fists 6F and marginally slower of the mile. Street Sense lost the Preakness by a nose.

Musket Man also won the TBD and he finished a close 3rd in the Preakness. If both Street Sense and Musket Man ran well in the Preakness of their TBD victories, why discount the chances of Ring Weekend who did not start in the Derby and should be a fresh horse.

14 May 2014 9:51 AM
Rusty Weisner


"Those defeated included the likes of Animal Kingdom, Street Sense and Orb who were far more impressive Derby winners than CC."

These horses were all fit but were at a tactical disadvantage in the Preakness, and Orb was coming off a pace-dictated Derby where everything went his way.

The tactical disadvantage for these closing types in the Preakness is common knowledge: the shorter distance gives leaders and non-classic runners an added chance of hanging on, the track dimensions force a more tactical race, and the shorter fields make the race less closer-friendly than the Derby.

Barring bad racing luck or a very bad start, CC won't be at a tactical disadvantage.  I'll be rooting more than betting, but still betting on him.

14 May 2014 10:08 AM
Rusty Weisner

JJ's Rocket,

I really enjoyed your comment.  I, too, don't care much about the time or the Beyer for the Derby and your explanation is enough for me to take it as an anomaly.  I'll take ROC in second, just because I can't pick a favorite underneath among other contenders, and ROC really was given no chance to hit the board with that ride, particularly when you watch him pulled sideways eight paths at the top of the stretch.


Your comparison of Musket Man to Ring Weekend is a really egregious example of your weakness for using selective evidence.  The argument that he won the TB Derby is laughable after he was beaten 9 lengths in some subsequent Calder stakes.  Meanwhile, Musket Man was 3rd in the Derby, which you don't even mention; all he did was hold to form in the Preakness.  Get an editor!

14 May 2014 10:18 AM

Rusty Weisner,

As usual I welcome criticisms as they give me an opportunity to clarify the perceived egregious portions of my posts.

“Your comparison of Musket Man to Ring Weekend is a really egregious example of your weakness for using selective evidence.”

The object of the comparisons was in indicate that horses that have done well on the Tampa Bay surface have performed well on the surface at Pimlico as well. The contributor raised the issue of surface in his post - “He freaked on a funny Tampa Bay surface”

In retrospect I should have highlighted that both Musket Man and Street Sense ran well on the Tampa Bay surface and also ran well on the Pimlico surface. I just assumed it was inferred.

“The argument that he won the TB Derby is laughable after he was beaten 9 lengths in some subsequent Calder stakes.”

Listed below is an extract from my dated (13 May 2014 6:51 PM)

“Ring Weekend qualified for the Derby with his commanding victory in the Tampa Bay Derby but was unable participate due to illness. Subsequent to his TBD victory, he was defeated by Our Caravan in the Calder Derby by 9L. Our Caravan was a no show in the Peter Pan. Why would the connections of this gelding enter him in the Preakness? On paper he should have absolutely no chance”

The above clearly indicates that I previously I cited his bad defeat in the non-graded Calder Derby. This was not relevant to the surface argument I was making in my subsequent post. Further, there was no need to mention that Street Sense won his Derby and that Musket Man finished 3rd in his as it was not relevant to the point I was making.

The contributor’s post reference the TBD and the funny Tampa Bay surface.

14 May 2014 11:19 AM

Rusty Weisner,

“Orb was coming off a pace-dictated Derby where everything went his way.”

I have read statements like the above before and classify them as gibberish. Nineteen horses contested the 2013 Derby and a pace-dictated Derby exclusively suited the winner. How is that conceivably possible? I guess the winner’s 18 opponents just collectively set up the race for him to win.

“The tactical disadvantage for these closing types in the Preakness is common knowledge:”

The records reflect that in the last 10 renewals of the Preakness 5 winners were either on or near the lead and the other 5 winners closed from of the pace. The tactical disadvantage you are highlighting has not dominated the race in the last 10yrs as it appears the leaders and closers are 50/50.

“Barring bad racing luck or a very bad start, CC won't be at a tactical disadvantage.”

Based on the above its 50/50.

14 May 2014 11:36 AM

Rusty : I'm correcting you, and you sir, are correct!  I think I just finished reading a Tonalist article when I posted my picks and was thinking how good he looked winning the Peter post may end up being the winning combination for the Belmont lol.

I'll have to review the field again to find a replacement for Tonalist.

Coldfacts : In my opinion, the only way he will lose is if he doesn't like the track and doesn't run on it or if he's not fit / injured for some reason so the answer is yes, to your first question (I think it was a question)....  the rest of your post doesn't apply, my post was specific to Chrome, not to the horses that have run/won the race in the past.   I don't handicap on that kind of information (history of the race.)

Who's your pick for the Preakness ?   Which horse has history on their side ?   I want to see if your pick will be the same as the horse that has history on their side, the one that follows the history trend of the Preakness.  

SI barely held 3rd in the Wood Memorial against a horse that we now know is not a classic distance horse in Samraat.  He's working like a monster...if he's going to a 6F race.  The Preakness is longer, we saw how short he was in the Wood.  I'm curious where you're basing that he has the best credentials to win this, based on what ?  I'm geniunely curious since your buddy Ranagulzion's reasoning is more like the Footloose song..." I'm so excited ! and I just can't hide it !... I'm about to lose control ...blah blah blah " and then he's the triple crown winner.

14 May 2014 11:46 AM

Preakness is Chrome's to lose, wont be betting but looking forward to getting some big odd's against Mr.Chrome in the belmont, so I hope he wins easily and everyone jumps on the TC bandwagon.

Saw Hey Leroy in a picture with SI, at the pimlico track yesterday, will be interesting to see where he is entered, I think he's will like the track.

14 May 2014 11:46 AM

Rusty : I'll use Ride On Curlin in my superfecta in place of Tonalist.   Rosario might be the key to unlocking this horse.  He's like the mystery and forgotten horse in this race...but no, I'm not putting him on top.  I'm not betting this race much and whatever I bet, it'll be Chrome on top.

Who's your pick ?

Keelerman : What's with the pingback comments ?  I don't understand what it means it slang for "Hi Bloggers"

14 May 2014 12:16 PM

Rusty Weisner;

I like your idea of a straight California Chrome/Ride On Curlin exacta. I heard from several sources that Ride On Curlin's workout at Pimlico this morning was exceptional, and that he seems to be thriving right now. He's another horse that could work out a nice stalking trip just off the leaders, and should he draw outside of California Chrome -- who knows? Perhaps Joel Rosario can keep California Chrome inside and get the jump on the favorite turning for home.

14 May 2014 12:24 PM

Those so-called low speed figures in the Kentucky Derby.

There was no significant difference from the expected result.

The problem is the fact that Beyer Speed Figures do not constitute science. Beyer has said so himself.

The figures recorded were just what one would have expected.

I never use Beyer Speed Figures. I have said several times that they are an unscientific interpretation of scientifically compiled data.

This is what the scientifically compiled data show.

Below are the DRF Speed Figures, plus the Track Variant, for the last 4 dirt races run by California Chrome, at a mile or longer:

10 furlongs (126lbs) 91+12=103

9 furlongs (122 lbs) 95+10=105

8.5 furlongs (118 lbs) 99+0=99

8.5 furlongs (124lbs) 85+15=100


What does it prove?

It proves that California Chrome is just an average graded stakes winner.

14 May 2014 12:34 PM


Those pingback comments are a bit odd, aren't they? :) I'm not exactly sure what they are, but I'll look into it.

14 May 2014 12:37 PM

Correction in my previous post about SI getting the 3rd place in the Wood, not sure why I worded it that way.  I meant to say he was hard pressed to hold on for third.

Coldfacts : Here are some facts (not sure if it’s cold or hot) :

Kid Cruz : Won the Private Terms and Federico Tesio Stakes

Bayern : Won the Derby Trial and was 3rd in the G1 Arkansas Derby

Dynamic Impact :  Won the Illinois Derby

Social Inclusion : 3rd in the Wood Memorial

The Wood Memorial field proved to be a non-factor in the Derby…I’m wondering why he has the best credentials of the “fresh” horses….

14 May 2014 12:43 PM

Rusty Weisner;

I must admit that the possibility of Bayern winding up as a Bob Baffert second-stringer has crossed my mind. I have a niggling feeling that he may be this year's version of Power Broker, who wasn't good enough to compete in the Triple Crown, but later went on to finish second in the Haskell and win the Indiana Derby. I'm really starting to like the chances of Ride On Curlin, so depending on the post position draw, I may end up going with him over Bayern as my second choice.

14 May 2014 12:46 PM
JJs Rocket


I like your use of random data to make your point. Maybe Street Sense won the derby because his best two races of his life were at CD, the breeders cup and the derby itself. It might have nothing to do with his visit to Florida. My point on Ring Weekend is that he wont be pushing SI in this race. He has been running better since he was gelded. I will use him a little at the bottom of the super.


I also like ROC a lot and he ran sneaky good in the derby. I do worry about SI always use of only 3f and 4f works as preparation. If the track is speed favoring  he will be really tough.

The tough part of this is finding the right long shot to get us paid. Going to have to take a shot with two or three in the bottom half of the super. Still working on the chosen ones, hehe..  

14 May 2014 12:52 PM

Is anyone going to try and beat Ben's Cat in Friday's Jim McKay Turf Sprint Stakes? I know that doing so won't be easy, but as amazing as Ben's Cat is, he does have a tendency to throw in a clunker once in a while, as he did in the 2012 renewal of the Jim McKay.

If he does fail to fire as the heavy favorite, I think it could have a major impact on the pick four and pick five payoffs. As a result, I may try to beat him with Spring to the Sky, who finished second to Ben's Cat in the Jim McKay Stakes one year ago. Does anyone else like his chances?

14 May 2014 1:02 PM

There was an interesting article on a couple days ago regarding Social Inclusion's recent workout at Pimlico. Although the work was officially credited as a half-mile in :47 seconds, Social Inclusion actually galloped out five furlongs in :59.60 and six furlongs in 1:13.60, meaning that the work was quite a bit longer than it appears to be on paper.

Here's the link to the article:

14 May 2014 1:09 PM

I can forgive Social Inclusion not winning the Wood, afterall it was only his third start and he was traveling to an unfamilar track for the first time. What happened looked alot like a short horse, that could improve big time next out. This will be his next time out, and I'm expecting he will take to Pimilico like a fish to water. I don't know if he can beat California Chrome, but if anyone can it will be him.

As for fearing Rosie doing anything intelligent in this race, that would be a big surprise. Her record is not that good, and she gets more attention than she deserves, in my opinion. She needs a far superior horse to win any race where jockey decisions have an effect on the outcome of the race.

I don't think that Pablo del Monte will be able to pull an Oxbow this year, as the speed will be challenging for the lead. He should not hit the board.

I am not so sure that Ria Antonia should be overlooked in here. She is quite capable of hitting the board in this race if her status as a good filly fits with what is a group of good colts with only California Chrome as a standout.

14 May 2014 1:48 PM
Rusty Weisner


The only problem is that everyone noticed the slow time before the speed figures came out.

For my part, I'm just going to scratch my head and chuck not just the speed figures but, more importantly, the final time -- as you say, the Derby offered the "expected result".

14 May 2014 1:50 PM
Rusty Weisner


I don't know what "DRF speed figures" are, but those aren't the Beyer figures you're giving for CC.  They were something like 107/108 for the San Felipe and SA Derby.

14 May 2014 1:51 PM
Rusty Weisner


For someone who liked Samraat, I'm surprised to hear you say the Wood Memorial field did nothing.  Samraat ran a good race.  Wicked Strong had a very difficult trip, particularly at the end where he not only had to swerve, but had his momentum arrested. They basically tied for fourth, a good showing.

14 May 2014 1:58 PM
Rusty Weisner


I don't see why Social Inclusion would "take like a fish to water"; the track is slow and heavy, isn't it?

14 May 2014 2:00 PM

It sounds like the rail has not been the place to be at Pimlico as of late:

14 May 2014 2:25 PM
Rusty Weisner


Okay, I get your point, but it's still not very good.  Who cares about the TB surface?  It's irrelevant.  Street Sense was the Juvenile champion and Derby winner; of course he did well in the Preakness.  Musket Man was 3rd in the Derby; of course it was no surprise that he ran 3rd in the Preakness. Ring Weekend had one good race a long time ago against inferior competetion and of course he will run up the track in the Preakness.

14 May 2014 2:28 PM
Rusty Weisner


Re: the rail.  That was the take on last year's Preakness.

14 May 2014 2:31 PM


Wow! None of CC' 9 opponents can rise to the occasion and defeat him legitimately. That an extreme position to take in sport of glorious uncertainty.

The historic information provided was not for handicapping purposes. It was just to highlight that an extreme position on a Derby winner irrespective how impressive is inadvisable.

14 May 2014 2:56 PM


“I'm curious where you're basing that he has the best credentials to win this, based on what?”

There are two groups of horses comprising CC’s opponents in the Preakness. One is comprised of horses that finished off the board in the Derby and other comprised of none Derby participants.

Our picks for the Derby finished 4th & 5th. With a better trip, Wicked Strong could have finished either 2nd or 3rd. Samaart finished a NS and WS 2 1/2L ahead of SI in the Wood. Using their Derby performances as a measure, Social Inclusion with expected improvement appears to have the best credentials from the Non-Derby participants group to win.

Rise On Curlin finished 7th in the Derby with what appeared to be a very bad strategy employed by his rider. Using Danza’s 3rd place finish as a measure ROC appears to have the best credentials from the Derby also rans.

14 May 2014 3:15 PM
Rusty Weisner

I don't care if Pablo del Monte is fast and if he was a sneaky-good third in the Bluegrass, he has never won on dirt or beyond 6.5f.

I don't like Dynamic Impact.  As a point of comparison, Departing was a much more accomplished Illinois Derby winner and he was no threat in the Preakness.  It's a terribly weak race.

I don't dislike Social Inclusion here.  I'm just not sure what to do with him yet.  My response to JayJay about the Wood actually makes me appraise him more highly, and I agree with others that he was just "short".  I think he and ROC are the most likely to fill out exotics.

14 May 2014 3:24 PM

Rusty Weisner:

The DRF Speed figures are found against each horse's name.

I have never encountered anyone who did not know about them.

The explanation is also in the DRF.

14 May 2014 5:03 PM
Little Bill

Friday weather forecast calls for Baltimore to get pounded with rain, early and often. Aside from that I think Susan is wide open.

I like Dynamic Impact in the Preakness. I like his running style, and he looks like one that's getting good at the right time. One thing I don't like is after the Illinois Derby Casse said he'd be surprised if he went to the Preakness but if J Oxley want to go they would. A Rod seems to be a forgotten horse with only one bad race.

14 May 2014 5:18 PM

How about some picks for the Black Eyed Susan.  I hope Pletcher's horses get pounded at the windows although it is a huge rider switch from R Vazques to Javier on Stopchargingmaria.  I like Euphrosyne for the win in here.  I also like Image of Anna to get a piece of it as I always like when a 3yo can beat there elders in the spring as she did her last race.

14 May 2014 5:51 PM


Preakness post positions.

 Bayern 5 10-1

 California Chrome 3 3/5

 Dynamic Impact 1 12-1

 General A Rod 2 15-1

 Kid Cruz 7 20-1

 Pablo Del Monte 9 20-1

 Ria Antonia 6 30-1

 Ride On Curlin 10 10-1

 Ring Weekend 4 20-1

 Social Inclusion 8 5-1

14 May 2014 6:19 PM
Little Bill

In the Susan I like Sloane Square. I think she'll be speediest from the gate, might be too fresh for the distance. I'll take a chance. America and Arethusa are also in play.

14 May 2014 7:10 PM


Chrome/Social Inclusion/Kid Cruz/ROC/General A ROD

Taking a shot at the Pick5 R7 Thru R/12Special Takeout Good value. Hoping the track dries out by Saturday. Recycling some of the derby super winnings hopefully successfully. Looking forward to your picks Good Luck all.

14 May 2014 9:29 PM

If Social Inclusion can get an easy lead he will be hard to pass on this track, maybe not exactly " a fish to water", but that is what I was thinking.

14 May 2014 10:30 PM

Rusty : I said the Wood field was a non-factor, meaning none of the horses from the Wood field hit the board.  There's a big difference, I didn't say Samraat did nothing, I happen to think he ran awesome in the race considering he's probably a miler and to barely miss 4th after getting close to the pace early is very gallant.   "Fourth" is only good for superfecta.  He's still my horse, I still like him a lot, just hope they go the BC Mile route instead of the Classic.

Wait, are you saying that you were wrong about Samraat in the Derby ?

Coldfacts : I'm confused why you're so surprised at my comment.   I never guaranteed a win by Chrome, in fact, I pointed two things, not one that can defeat him.   I'm not berating the field, I just happen to believe that Chrome is the best of this field.   Does the best horse always win ?  No.   I don't know what you want me to say... " My pick is Chrome to win the Preakness but there's a chance that 9 other horses might beat him"   does that work for you ?  I can't handicap a race and pick my horse and then start doubting myself because the 9 other horses has " a chance " to beat him...that's stupid.  Why handicap at all ?    When it comes to betting, I’m not like you, I don’t try to cover all the horses.   I have to pick one or two horses on top, that’s it.  I bet small to win big.

With regards to the "historic information", I've already posted to you what I think of your versions of historic information and I chose not to follow your advice when it comes to it.  The only historic information I'm using for the Preakness is that most winners of this race have been horses that runs on or near the lead.   Chrome runs on or near the lead...and I happen to believe he’s the best horse.

As for SI having the best credentials, you didn't say anything about the Derby performances of the also rans as your measuring stick.  There's a difference when you say he has the best credentials amongst the non-derby starters without referencing the Derby because it makes it look like you're basing it on their record so I wanted to clarify.  As my post of the records of the 4 non-derby starters, he doesn't have the best credentials.   The Kentucky derby is a different track with different field (a lot more horses in it.)  I can't use it as a measuring stick for how the race will be at another track with totally different scenario, different field, different track, different weather, etc etc etc.    I'm handicapping the race based on what Chrome has done and who he has beaten.   I believe this field is inferior to the Derby field and my only concern is whether he will like the track and if he’s fit.

Keelerman :   Official or not, if SI did work a 1:13 for 6Fs (on the gallop out) then that's good for the horse, hopefully that's enough for him to carry his speed all the way.  Still going to let him beat me, 5-1 is too low for me.  I might bet him in my exotics if he went up to 10-1 or higher but that's highly unlikely.  Chrome is already 3-5 ML, if SI does hold on for 2nd, that would be a very lousy exacta….I would rather take a chance at a $2 P3 or $2 P4 than that exacta.     Would like your take on the P4 races including the Preakness, you got any longshots for me ?

14 May 2014 11:21 PM


“He doesn't have the best credentials amongst the non-derby starters”

Which of the non-derby starters recorded the highest Beyer?

Which of the non-derby starters recorded a NTR?

Which of the non-derby starters was the overwhelming favorite in the 100 Points prep?

Which of the non-derby starters is the ML second choice?

The fact that SI is the second choice in the ML, he is not only regarded as the best of the non-derby starters but also the best of the rest.

15 May 2014 8:18 AM


Got to throw Bayern in 3rd or 4th

Baffert changing tactics removing blinkers. Social Inclusion and Bayern are fresher horses and should have more energy at the finish for 2nd and third. Baffert has won this race 5 times so he knows what to do.

15 May 2014 8:35 AM
JJs Rocket


Your comment about SI workouts being longer than what it appears on paper is a very valid point. They always work that horse fast but this workout was extremely fast. At least that morning he got over the track extremely well. There were 5 workouts at 4f that morning and SI was a full 2 seconds faster than the next fastest horse. He was 10 lengths faster than the next fastest horse and 15 to 20 lengths faster than some of the others. That is amazing. The question for me is not if he will be in the lead but how the track plays that day, if speed is lasting then watch out. Honor Code couldn't make up ground on him and he was 7 lengths in front of the 3rd place horse in that race. I still think that CC will win the race but really worried if the track plays front running.

15 May 2014 9:10 AM

If Pablo tries to run with SI he will get smoked.Speed on paper and on the track are different animals sometimes.Quickness to get out of the gate and into the lead are not measured at the quarter or half mile pole splits.He is also inside of him so if they dont want a see a chared Pablito the jockey better act accordingly.He ran at Gulfstream against Wildcat Red and I think SI and Red would be a  better speed match.

15 May 2014 9:13 AM


“I pointed two things, not one that can defeat him”

You specified two things that can defeat him i.e., a lack of fitness and a dislike for the track.

If he is defeated either one or the other of the above reasons will be cited. How practical it that?    

CC was fit enough to win the Derby being geared down and 14 days later his fitness could be an issue. How does a healthy horse losses its fitness in two weeks? He took to the CD surface fine but might not like the Pimlico surface. Interesting!

The only horse with a surface advantage is Kid Cruz. The remainder of the field will have to take to the surface. Is CC the only horse whose performance could be impacted by the track? Social Inclusion is recovering from a foot bruise, could this minor setback inhibit his chance of winning? They all have issue to deal with.

California Chrome is the class of the field and the 3-5 ML favorite. If it is impossible for him to be defeated by any of his opponents, he should be removed from the  field if it can be accurately determined that he is fit and he like the track. His opponents could then run for the minor placing and the remaining portion of the purse.

Since the above is an impractical scenario, pre-determined excuses for his likely defeat have no place in any exchange. All the horses face similar issues and their performances can similarly impacted.

I have always viewed you as a measured contributor and your extreme position on CC to the point of advancing likely reasons for his defeat that excludes his opponents is certainly not measured.

As a fan of the sport you are certainly aware that the great ones rise to the occasions despite adversities.

15 May 2014 9:21 AM

Rusty Weisner,

“Weekend had one good race a long time ago against inferior competition and of course he will run up the track in the Preakness.”

I always caution my fellow contributors to be measured in their assessments of young developing horses. Ring Weekend won the TBD at 12-1. He was not the strongest contender of paper. He entered the stakes with only a MSW victory to his credit and was facing winners for the first time. He ran them off their legs to score a commanding victory. It was his breakout race and all 3YOs record one. He earned his way into the Derby.

The TBD field contained the Sam Davis winner; the 2nd place finisher in the Holy Bull and the 4th place finisher in the FOY. Bear in mind that Conquest Titan finished ahead of Intense Holiday in the HB who subsequently won the Risen Star and finished 2nd in the LA Derby. To suggest that all of Ring Weekend’s opponents in the TBD were inferior is blatantly untrue.

After the Calder Derby he spiked a fever. No one knows if the problems that led to this fever were fermenting in the Calder Derby and contributed to his poor performance.

Commanding Curve backed into the Derby with only a MSW victory in the win column. He finished second. Are his speed figures comparable to those of Ring Weekend? NO!

Ring Weekend’s trainer is amongst the best in the US. He is not the kind of trainer that would enter a horse if it does not belong. He has won many big races with underdogs so his horse is horse in a familiar place.

Keep an open mind!

15 May 2014 9:54 AM

Coldfacts :  Now that makes more sense, still your opinions though.  Do you really believe that the horse with the highest Beyer last race is the best horse in the field, and I'm asking you in general.  As for being 2nd choice, who's regarding him as the best of the rest ?   The oddsmaker.   I'd like to see him set a NTR outside of GP, we all know how many times the track record has been set in that track this year alone.

I'm not trying to sway you, bet him all you want :)

As far as CC, I thought my last comment addressed it.  I don't know why it's not sinking in.   Let me remind that he is MY pick (keyword: MY), in MY opinion, he is the best.  My angle of betting is IF he takes to the track and fit, he'll win.  Will he, I have no idea.   I don't care about the other horses, I picked CC.  I think he's the best of this bunch and there are only two concerns for me.   We won't know until this Saturday if I am.

Like I said, I don't try to buy the races, I don't play every darn angle, from breeding to history, to matching names, to closers, to speeds to track lovers, to bird lovers, to sloppy horses, I can't....that's just not practical for me.   I thought your examples are hilarious lol, don't run CC and just wait for the race to be over...haha.

Who are your picks ?

15 May 2014 9:54 AM
Rusty Weisner

JJ's Rocket,

Thanks for another useful comment.  That time seems very fast for this track.  It was very slow for the 2012 Preakness, and I think last year, too.

15 May 2014 10:06 AM

Coldfacts : One more thing, I could be totally wrong about Chrome, he could like the track and be fit as can be and still lose.... which would mean he is not the best which means I will be wrong in my angle and worse, my bets.   Is that what you're looking for ?

15 May 2014 10:06 AM
Rusty Weisner


I call fourth in the Derby "hitting the board".  Fourth and fifth are pretty good.  Wicked Strong's race was stronger (and not just because he came a nose ahead) because he had a stumble, a wider trip, and lots of traffic in the stretch.  Wicked Strong fits the profile of a strong Belmont contender; if CC wins the Preakness WS will be a close second-favorite.


Sure, I'll keep an open mind on Ring Weekend, but if given the choice between what I see on paper and wishful thinking, I'll take the former.  We can make another "internal bet" -- you won the last one when Rosalind finished ahead of Ria Antonia.  I'll say Ring Weekend comes in no better than fifth.


I see what you're talking about.  Like most people, I use the currency of the big, fat, bold Beyer figures, not the "speed figure plus track variant".

15 May 2014 10:15 AM
Rusty Weisner


I already deeply regret not going all in on the best horse in the Derby after knowing he was the best horse.  I thought the possibility of a bad start, above all, made his losing a possibility.

The Preakness is no place to try to repair that mistake for this horse.  All the possible obstacles he might have faced in the Derby disappear here.  Who cares about the time? -- Espinoza was standing in the irons at the end.  I think you either take him or skip betting on the race.  I'm going to split the baby and bet, but not much.

And who cares about surface? The track can be deep and dull but that's been no obstacle to the best horses the past couple years: IHA/Bodemeister and Oxbow last year.  Don't listen to Coldfacts about Orb last year, he wasn't the best: my biggest regret last year was not just tossing him in the Preakness (I split the baby) when he had dramatic advantages of pace and surface in the Derby and didn't deserve his short odds.

15 May 2014 10:24 AM

The grandsons of Mr. Prospector have to date sired 13 horses that have won 18 Triple Crown races. Of the 18 TC victories, 5 were recorded in the Preakness. Unbridled, Thunder Gulch, Street Cry, Lemon Drop Kid Lookin At Lucky and Curlin are amongst Mr. P's best grandsons.

Lookin At Lucky’s first crop is yet to race. Unbridled, Thunder Gulch, Street Cry and Curlin have sired at least one horse that has won a TC race.  Lemon Drop Kid who 18 years old is yet to sire a winner of the TC race.

Based on his pedigree he should have be a major influence on the TC trail annually. He was sire by the great Kingmambo and out of a Seattle Slew mare. He won the Belmont, Travers Whitney, Woodward, Suburban and Brooklyn H. He has sired some nice horses but has not live up to expectation.

Lemon Drop Kid will be represented by Kid Cruz in the Preakness. Not very often is a Lemon Drop Kid progeny seen in a TC race. Base on speed figures KC does not belong in the same field with many of his opponents. Whereas his opponents might be faster he has an abundance of stamina that fuels his ferocious closing kick. Could this be the year where the well-bred Lemon Drop Kid joins the other grandsons of Mr. P with a TC victory?

Only The Derby carryovers have raced beyond 9F. All the new shooters have been seen fully extended at 9F. Of the new shooter, Kid Cruz is the one that appeared to be the strongest in the closing furlong of a 9F race. Of Derby carryovers General A Rod and Ride On Curlin failed to win at 9F although they ran well. The extra 1/2F of the Preakness should therefore favor Kid Cruz. California Chrome won the 9F SA Derby & KD geared down and stands supreme in the field.

Kid Cruz has what might prove to be an insignificant advantage. He won the Federico Tesio at Pimlico in his last start making him the only horse in the field with a start on the track. He was much closer to the leaders in the Tesio as compared to the 25L off the pace he was in the Private Term. He will be required to be even closer in the Preakness as the fractions are expected to be fast. He will be the last to arrive on the scene and I expect him to get there in time as the extra 1/2F is firmly in his favor.

15 May 2014 12:17 PM

Rusty Weisner

“he had dramatic advantages of pace and surface in the Derby”

I am formally requesting that you to provide the evidence that supports your claim that the pace and surface conditions favored Orb in the 2013 Derby. How is it possible for the pace and surface conditions to favored one horse in a field of 19? Are you remotely aware that Orb was the favorite in the race?

Like California Chrome he entered the Derby with the best record and 4 consecutive victories. The horse with the best record and credentials going in, won the race. You are doing Orb a disservice by suggesting pace and track condition contributed to his victory.

In the absence of any evidence your claim is false.

15 May 2014 12:40 PM


Saturday's pick four at Pimlico looks like a tough one, with many logical contenders to choose from in each of the first three races, but I do like the look of 12-1 shot Nutello in the Dixie Stakes. After making thirteen starts in France -- where he was good enough to finish third in a group I -- Nutello came to the U.S. and finished third in the Sword Dancer Invitational (gr. I) at Saratoga, after which he was transferred to the barn of Graham Motion. A pair of sub-par efforts followed, but after being given a break, Nutello returned on April 19th to finish a good third in the one-mile Henry S. Clark Stakes on the turf at Pimlico, beaten just a half-length.

I believe that with the benefit of a recent race, Nutello will be much sharper on Friday than he was last month, and he should be able to work out a nice ground-saving trip from post two. Furthermore, the distance of the Dixie seems to be ideal, and he demonstrated in France that he can handle moderately wet ground, so the impending rains at Pimlico shouldn't affect his chances.

Another horse I like in the pick four is Ground Control, assuming that he does run in the Sir Barton Stakes and not in one of the earlier undercard races. His trainer, Tony Dutrow, seems to think highly of him, and I like his morning line price of 10-1, although I would be a bit surprised if he stays at those odds. In a wide-open race, he seems to have as good a chance as any.

15 May 2014 1:05 PM

Ziggy the Great in Race 4 at Belmont today.

Playing a Preakness Pick 4, and hoping Social inclusion beats Chrome.  

15 May 2014 1:10 PM


Thanks for sharing the post positions and morning line odds! I'm surprised to see Social Inclusion as a 5-1 shot -- I would have guessed that he would be a bit higher. And I'm really surprised that none of the other horses are lower than 10-1. Very interesting!

15 May 2014 1:14 PM


Verrazano v Olympic Glory at Newbury on Saturday

15 May 2014 1:25 PM


That sounds terrific! I've been eagerly waiting for Verrazano's European debut, and to seen him entered against Olympic Glory -- well, that should be quite a race!

15 May 2014 1:41 PM
Rusty Weisner


I have it on very good authority that Social Inclusion is going to kill 'em.

15 May 2014 1:49 PM


It should be quite a race.

15 May 2014 2:08 PM
Carlos in Cali

California Chrome is in a different league. Again he spurts-away, romps and wins with something left! There's nobody in the field that can run with him down the stretch...nobody! Keep trying to beat him to your dismay.

Sorry Ranagulzion, This isn't Gulfstream Park and the year's most over-hyped 3yo won't get an easy lead. Just like your LDS "theory" has been whole-heartedly and thoroughly debunked, your overly excited and easily influenced persona will take a beating after the false wonder horse gets his head handed to him on Saturday. Once again, your enthusiasm is geared toward the wrong horse...

sceptre, your futile attempt at relegating CC to also-ran status is laughable.How many "other" horses will you say are better than California Chrome before you wave the white flag and see the light!    

15 May 2014 2:23 PM
Carlos in Cali

This is the first time I've ever agreed with Coldfacts. He's right about Orb: he was the best horse in the Derby and the off-track didn't move him up either. Him repeatedly winning @ GP's highway proved he was legit- something just wasn't right w/him after the Derby though,hence his quick yank to the breeding shed.

15 May 2014 2:35 PM
Rusty Weisner


What, exactly, is a "formal complaint" on this blog?  

I'm not going to rehash this; you're wrong.  I don't recall you making any good picks in last year's TC races, even after a Derby that should have taught you something.  

Last year's Derby was a big carcass of pace casualties and pace beneficiaries, which made for nice odds on the winners of the subsequent two races.


To change the subject back to the present, I don't see anything of the kind coming out of this year's Derby.  Any "pace casualty", like Uncle Sigh, was just a weak horse to begin with, while the pace was not so languid that a closer couldn't close; witness the other "CC"; you asked whether Intense Holiday was maybe too close to the pace -- Meh. What pace? He seems to have peaked too early or to have some problem. No excuses. The Derby didn't tell me anything I didn't already know, i.e., CC was the best horse. I don't see any smart angles after this one.  The only angle I can see on the horizon is maybe making excuses for Wicked Strong and giving him a chance to beat CC in the Belmont (and "the other CC" -- though I actually think WS will be favored over "the other CC"); maybe Tonalist will be an option, too.

15 May 2014 2:52 PM
Rusty Weisner

Carlos in Cali,

I don't know about that.  He came back to his peak form in a tough Travers, but it didn't seem good enough.  Forget Orb.  Just look at who came in 2nd and 3rd in that Derby and what they subsequently did and that should tell you something.  

15 May 2014 2:56 PM

Rusty Weisner,

My selection to win Derby 2013 was Revolutionary. Orb was my selection to win FOY and FL Derby.

Just a I suspected there is no evidence to discredit Orb's victory. He was the only horse to finish on the board in all the TC races. He was he best in the TC series. Man up and admit.

15 May 2014 3:08 PM

Rusty Weisner,

There was no mention of a formal complaint. I made a form request to you.

“Just look at who came in 2nd and 3rd in that Derby and what they subsequently”

Golden Soul had done nothing. Revolutionary (3starts -1-1-0) Normandy Invasion (2 starts 1-1-0) Normandy Invasion set a NTR. Will Take Charge and Palace Malice who were unplaced behind Orb have done exceedingly well.

15 May 2014 3:17 PM


A CC defeat in the Preakness hinges on two possibilities i.e., Lack of fitness and dislike for the racing surface.

Let's assume he loses by a NS; how will you be able to determine if one of the above was the cause?

I am taking the longshot Kid Cruz. There are five horses from the Mr. Prospector sire line that can form a tag tem on CC. Social Inclusion to keep him honest on the lead. General A Rod to pounce if SI weakens and Ride On Curlin to pick up early in the stretch an KC to catch him on the line.

I sure you like that scenario

15 May 2014 3:32 PM
Rusty Weisner


Let's agree to disagree.  The more relevant issue is what to do with the results of this year's Derby.  My comment up above was: beats me.

As for our "bet": it's a nice 10-horse field.  Ring Weekend finishes in the bottom half, no better than sixth.

15 May 2014 3:40 PM
Rusty Weisner


I'm glad to see there's no mention of Ring Weekend.  Your Kid Cruz seems like a much more appealing longshot.  I'll take a good look at that one and maybe do something with him.

15 May 2014 4:17 PM

Rusty Weisner,

Ring Weekend will make the board.

15 May 2014 4:19 PM

Rusty Weisner;

I agree -- I would be surprised if there are any Oxbows or Palace Malices hidden in this year's Derby field. As a result, I'm finding it very difficult to formulate any advance opinions of the Belmont Stakes.

I'm hoping the Preakness will provide clues on what to make of the Derby runners that are awaiting the Belmont, but that could be difficult with just three Derby runners entered in the Preakness. In any case, it's going to be an interesting three weeks!

15 May 2014 4:21 PM
Rusty Weisner

The Dixie looks just as wide open as last year, and no less so for being cut back to 8.5f.

15 May 2014 4:27 PM
Rusty Weisner


I just watched those two Kid Cruz races.  I try not to be a sucker for this kind of horse, but maybe just this once.  

It's interesting, by the way, that they cut the length of the Tesio to 8.5f, while the earlier local prep, the Private Terms, is still 9f.

15 May 2014 4:31 PM

It's decision time! Here are my selections for the 139th running of the Preakness Stakes:

15 May 2014 4:53 PM


I think Social Inclusion will make California Chrome work very hard if he get a good break. Red Bullet was beaten in the Wood by Fusaichi Pegasus. His next start was 5 weeks later and he won the Preakness handily.

Social Inclusion was beaten in the Wood and is making his next start 5 weeks later. If he was racing with blinkers off I would be on him but I think he will be too ranked and use himself too much.

15 May 2014 6:36 PM

Keelerman :  Yeah, I like Ground Control, although I picked a horse with a similar name (Ground Transport) who joined the derby trail undefeated but never really made an impact.  When I see this name, it reminds me of that horse but I still would use him specially at 10-1.  As for Nutello, I haven’t looked but I’ll take your word for it, I like your comments about the horse and specially his 12-1 ML.   If I hit the P4 with Nutello in it, you get 25% of the net hehe.

I’m also going to play the GP Rainbow 6 more than the Preakness P4 - 6M pot, if I can get lucky with some big long shots, it’s worth a shot for a dime bet with the mandatory payout.

Rusty : Yeah, 4th is still good even though it’s not officially hitting the board but I get ya.  I’m just really disappointed that Samraat wasn’t the horse I thought he was, maybe I’m giving up too early on him but even so, I think I’d rather see him go shorter.  It would be really nice if he can win the Jim Dandy or the Haskell with good rest.   As for Chrome, I never care for the final time of any race, big race or claiming race.  I don’t use it for any of my handicapping because I’m a firm believer of “pace makes the race”.  I generally watch how the horse won the race, not necessarily how fast.

Coldfacts :  So you picked 5 horses to beat my pick, I think that says a lot about Chrome.  The fact that you have to pick 5 horses to tag team him tells me that I’m on the right horse.   So you mentioned 5 horses to me in your 3:32 PM post, then you posted to Rusty after stating that Ring Weekend will make the board.   Do you have any other horses picked besides those 5 that you forgot to post ?   What about Dynamic Impact ?  I sure hope you hit the exacta trifecta and superfecta with 50% of the field.

So you use SI to try and soften CC, are you singling KC on top with GAR and ROC on the bottom ?  Where does Ring Weekend fit in ?   Are you putting SI on top at all ?   Just trying to imagine how you’re putting your tickets together, out of curiosity.

16 May 2014 12:58 AM

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