Posts Tagged ‘Pimlico Race Course’

Pimlico Special 2015 analysis featuring Commissioner (Video)

Commissioner is the solid 5-2 morning line favorite in Friday’s Grade 3 Pimlico Special. His task became easier following the scratches of Tapiture, Albano, and Kid Cruz.

I have also posted Friday’s Late Pick 4 Tickets from Pimlico at Pick 6 Blog


SATURDAY’S PREAKNESS DAY (MAY 16) full card analysis now available to purchase for $15 at:

The Runaway Horse

Kentucky Derby 2015 Recap + Preakness Preview

Two-Year-Old Champion and post time favorite American Pharoah lived up to the hype with a game tally in Kentucky Derby 2015.

American Pharoah

Kentucky Derby 2015 winner American Pharoah – photo by Eclipse Sportswire

A moderate pace made the race and the top three Derby finishers dominated from the opening bell.

In an uneventful renewal under the Twin Spires, Dortmund showed the way early, closely followed by Firing Line and American Pharoah.

Firing Line grabbed a brief lead in the lane but Dortmund was not quite finished and American Pharaoh was widest of all and making a determined run.

In the end, American Pharoah prevailed by a hard fought length with Firing Line a clear 2nd.

American Pharoah was part of my original Derby contenders list when I started my annual blog last September and he got some sweet Derby revenge for his sire line (PioneeroftheNile, Empire Maker).

Firing Line was fresh and ran to his strong pre-Derby works. He has a nice rivalry going with previously undefeated Dortmund.

Dortmund weakened a bit in the final furlong but held the show by a neck over Frosted, the only stretch running making up any ground. The latter might have made some serious noise if he got a bit more pace help. Look for the McLaughlin-Godolphin runner in the Belmont Stakes.

Danzig Moon ended up an even 5th under Julien Leparoux.

Materiality was supposed to attend the pace but his lack of seasoning was evident following a tardy beginning. He did will to finish 6th and the Belmont Stakes is next.

Dubai shipper Mubtaahij finished a respectable 8th. He is pointing to the Belmont Stakes.

Carpe Diem slowly faded to 10th and is also targeting the Belmont Stakes.

Preakness 2015 Probables

AMERICAN PHAROAH (Pioneerof The Nile – Littleprincessemma, by Yankee Gentleman) american pharoah silks

Trainer: Bob Baffert – Owner: Zayat Stables

Last Start: 1st in the G1 Kentucky Derby.

Comments: The 2YO Champ laid it all on the line in the Derby to extend his winning streak to five. The Preakness will be his fourth start in nine weeks.

FIRING LINE (Line of David – Sister Girl Blues, by Hold for Gold) firing line silks

Trainer: Simon Callaghan – Owner: Arnold Zetcher

Last Start: 2nd in G1 Kentucky Derby on May 2.

Comments: Finally got the best of Dortmund but Baffert still beat him with American Pharaoh. He is still fresh for the rest of the Triple Crown series but Derby runner-up finishers frequently flop in the Preakness. He has looked energetic in his Churchill gallops leading up to the Preakness.

DORTMUND (Big Brown – Our Josephina, by Tale of the Cat) dortmund silks

Trainer: Bob Baffert – Owner: Kaleem Shah, Inc.

Last Start: 3rd in G1 Kentucky Derby on May 2.

Comments: His unbeaten streak came to an end in the Derby but he was hardly disgraced finishing 3rd. He might be the one to catch in the Preakness.

Danzig Moon (Malibu Moon – Leaveminthedust, by Danzig)

Trainer: Mark Casse – Owner: John C. Oxley

Last Start: 5th in G1 Kentucky Derby on May 2.

Comments: The wiseguy longshot in the Derby completed the Super High 5 under the Twin Spires. He should offer wagering value in Maryland.


Trainer: Arnauld Delacour – Owner: Lael Stables

Latest Published Workout: 4f in 51.60 (31/32) at Fair Hill on May 9.

Last Start: 1st in G3 Lexington Stakes at Keeneland on April 11.

Comments: Showed nice maturity and development in the Lexington Stakes. He might be getting good at the right time and Javier Castellano will ride in Baltimore.

BODHISATTVA (Student Council – Dr. Cheryl P, by Talk Is Money)

Trainer: Jose Corrales – Owner: Jose Corrales

Latest Published Workout: 5f in 1:04 (9/10) at Laurel on May 10.

Last Start: 1st in Federico Tesio at Pimlico on April 18.

Comments: The local hope meets some salty company.

TALE OF VERVE (Tale of Ekati – Verve, by Unbridled)

Trainer: Dallas Stewart – Owner: Charles E. Fipke

Latest Published Workout: 5f in 1:00.40 (5/25) at Churchill Downs on May 10.

Last Start: 1st in Keeneland MSW at 9.5f on April 23.

Comments: Kentucky Derby also-eligible won’t have any problem making the gate at Pimlico. He faces the big boys in his first start vs. winners.

SATURDAY’S PREAKNESS DAY (MAY 16) full card analysis from Pimlico will be available to purchase later this week at:

The Runaway Horse

Upcoming full cards: Santa Anita weekends (May 16-17). PREAKNESS DAY (May 16) analysis from Pimlico coming soon! Every full card includes suggested Early Pick 4, Pick 5, Pick 6, and Late Pick 4 spread tickets.

Weekend full card recaps with highlights are posted on The Runaway Horse What You Missed page

Preakness 2013 Day Analysis Recap

Thanks to everyone for purchasing my Preakness Day analysis from Pimlico on Saturday, May 18. For those who missed it, I have included highlights and analysis below.

Upcoming Today’s Racing Digest full cards:

Churchill Saturdays (May 25, June 1, June 15, June 22, June 29)
Belmont Park (Fri. June 7 – Brooklyn ‘Cap Day)
Belmont Park (Sat. June 8 – Belmont Stakes Day)

Preakness Day analysis highlights:

Daily Double (race 2-3, $13.60)
Daily Double (race 3-4, $55.60)
Pick 3 (race 2-4, $34.65)
PIM 5 JOY ($10.80)
Daily Double (race 4-5, $74.60)
Pick 3 (race 3-5, $110.05)
Daily Double (race 5-6, $37.60)
Pick 3 (race 4-6, $105.35)

Oxbow horse

Congrats to Preakness 2013 hero Oxbow – photo by Eclipse Sportswire

Preakness Day full card analysis from Pimlico (5-18-13)
By Jarrod Horak (,  
:  AM Clouds/PM Sun. High 75.
Best Bets (races 7, 10, 11,12)

PIM 1 (OC-25k/2x, 8.5f) #5 BENNY THE LOCAL (7-2) exits back-to-back local claiming route wins and his April 19 number works well in this spot. He gets pace to chase in the paper race and Kobiskie’s $$ rider Cruise strings along. #6 Hakama (7-2) missed by a nose in a similar course/distance spot April 18. He likes this distance and could move forward 3rd off the shelf. #1 Aussi Austin (3-1) earned a triple digit number in the Big A slop April 12 and the show finisher came back to score. Rosario hops aboard the ground saving off the pace threat but he is 0-for-8 on a fast track. #3 Jarrod’s Commando (10-1) was re-claimed out of his last by Carlos Garcia. He earned a quality number at Tampa Bay March 9 and can be a factor here if he handles two turns. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta Box 5-6, Exacta 5-6/1-3  

PIM 2 (Str-Hcp, 8.5f) #5 WHO DAT BOY (7-2) enters in fine form and has fired Trifecta shots in 8 of 9 starts at this distance. Napravnik hops aboard the sharp tactical threat. #7 No Brakes (5-1) exits a place finish behind my first race top choice Benny the Local so give him extra credit if that one runs well in the opener. The 2-time local winner will try to get involved late. #9 Hello Lover (7-5) makes his first start in 4+ months for profitable trainer Reid. He fired Trifecta shots in five straight to end his 2012 campaign.  #3 Love Talk (6-1) was re-claimed out of his last by McMahon and he is a pace player in his first start at 8.5f. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta Box 5-7, Exacta 5-7/3-9

PIM 3 (Alw-1x, 5T) #7 RELENTLESS MOVE (4-1) has fired Exacta shots in all six turf sprints and Pimentel chose him over Bowman’s Boy. McMahon excels 2nd off the shelf. #5 Bowman’s Boy (9-2) exits a course/distance claiming win off the shelf. Russell has booted him home before. #8 Brooklyn Cowboy (7-2) is a pace player under Rosario for a sharp first grass barn (Mike Pino) but his pedigree does not scream turf. #6 Inflamed Spirit (5-1) won a downhill sprint April 21 and O’Neill excels dirt/turf. THE PLAYS: #7 to win, Exacta Box 5-7, Exacta 5-7/6-8

PIM 4 (Rollicking, 5f) #3 DEBT CEILING (8-1) easily won his Laurel bow and Robb shows a profit with 46-90 day layoff runners. He needs to improve but has two bullets in his holster and barn is sending out love wires here. #6 Sweet Emma Rose (7-5) lived up to her advanced billing with a facile wire job at low odds in her Keeneland bow April 5. Ward’s $$ rider Rosario hops aboard. Uncoupled stablemate #4 No Nay Never (5-2) also won her Polytrack bow but Rosario chose Sweet Emma Rose. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta 3/4-6, Exacta 4-6/3

PIM 5 (Alw-1x, 8.5T) #7 JOY (6-1) raced evenly behind honest splits in a similar local spot April 27. She deserves another shot on turf and Motion switches to profitable turf rider Prado. #9 Nokaze (4-1) makes her first start in 7+ months for profitable layoff trainer Matz. She won her turf route bow last June and Stevens hops aboard. #14 Marataya’s Tune (9-2) is 3-for-3 at 8.5f and went all the way here April 25. Rose rides the early runner well. #5 Moral High Ground (8-1) rallied to finish 2nd behind Marataya’s Tune last time and has fired Exacta shots in all four tries at this trip. THE PLAYS: #7 to win, Exacta Box 7-9, Exacta 7-9/5-14

PIM 6 (Chick Lang, 6f) #7 CITY OF WESTON (6-1) has rattled off 3-in-a-row and new pilot Castellano is 2-for-2 with Sano recently. The consistent sort will be finishing. #9 Undrafted (3-1) faltered in the G1 Blue Grass. He hit the board in back-to-back graded sprints before that and projects a tactical trip under Rosario. #2 Zee Bros (2-1) is very fast but could not keep in together at a flat mile in the G3 Derby Trial. This distance is better but the inside pace player meets other speed (Bobcat Jim, Brave Dave) again. THE PLAYS: #7 to win, Exacta 7/2-9, Exacta 2-9/7

PIM 7 (James W. Murphy, 8T) #9 CHINA HOLIDAY (8-1) finished 5th in his first turf race March 9 and winner (Noble Tune) came back to capture the G2 American Turf at Churchill on May 3. He just missed in a state bred stakes affair at Tampa Bay April 6 and Carlos Garcia excels with shippers. #1 Notacatbutallama (9-5) makes his first start in 4+ months for Pletcher and is back on preferred footing (3 turf wins).  He reunites with winning rider Johnny V. #4 Heat Press (6-1) is out of hot sire Malibu Moon (Orb) and dam has tossed two turf winners. The Tesio runner-up looms a pace factor at the very least for Prado/Motion.  THE PLAYS: #9 to win, Exacta 9/1-4, Exacta 1-4/9

PIM 8 (G3 Allaire DuPont Distaff, 8.5f) #3 MOON PHILY (7-2) cruised in her last pair and has been 1-2 in seven straight. The fresh filly is a tight fit on numbers and projects a tactical trip. #7 Brushed by a Star (2-1) is usually in the mix vs. this kind and has banked more than $600k. Rosario hops aboard the versatile sort. #6 Summer Applause (9-5) was last seen finishing 4th in the G1 Apple Blossom. She owns two graded route wins and is a low odds tactical threat. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta 3/6-7, Exacta 6-7/3     

PIM 9 (G3 Gallorette, 8.5T) #1 HARD NOT TO LIKE (10-1) goes outside to inside and I like the rider switch to Johnny V. She has struck twice at this distance and can go much better with a ground saving tactical trip. #5 Old Tune (4-1) can rebound if she reverts to her preferred early style, which led to two wins at Tampa. #4 Samitar (5-2) keeps running the same race and her numbers are stuck in the mid-90s. She gets away from Centre Court & Dayatthespa and can go better 3rd off the shelf. #3 Pianist (4-1) runs well fresh and will offer more value than her stablemate Samitar. Mike Smith hops aboard the early-pressing sort. THE PLAYS: #1 to win, Exacta Box 1-5, Exacta 1-5/3-4

PIM 10 (G3 Maryland Sprint ‘Cap, 6f) #4 HARDENED WILDCAT (4-1) has won his last four at this trip including a game score off a layoff at Aqueduct April 19. He has the productive Castellano/Brown team in his corner. #8 Laurie’s Rocket (6-1) does some of his best work at 6f and gets Rosario, who excels with early-pressing types. #7 Candyman E (6-1) is 6-for-10 at this trip. Bravo sticks with the tactical type and his usual number puts him squarely in the mix. #10 Sage Valley (5-2) has won three straight in NY and figures in the hunt throughout under Johnny V. He is not a need to lead type. THE PLAYS: #4 to win, Exacta Box 4-8, Exacta 4-8/7-10

PIM 11 (G2 Dixie, 9T) #5 DOUBLES PARTNER (6-1) can fire a fresh shot and reunites with winning pilot Leparoux. I have always liked this one and he should offer value. #4 Imagining (5-1) looked like a future stakes horse after his winning Keeneland return April 13. #9 Swift Warrior (4-1) exits two straight G3 turf route wins and attracts sharp grass pilot Napravnik. #2 Optimizer (7-2) is a G3 iron horse with Rosario. #1 Willcox Inn (6-1) fits on class/numbers. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Trifecta 4-5-9/1-2-4-5-9/1-2-4-5-9

PIM 12 (G1 Preakness, 9.5f) #4 DEPARTING (6-1) had the points (20) to make the Derby starting gate but his connections always had this race in mind. He earned triple digit Late Pace Ratings in all three route wins and overcame a wide trip from post 13 in the Illinois Derby. Al Stall Jr. knows how to get a horse ready for a big race (Blame over Zenyatta) and his Preakness entrant appears poised to strike. #1 Orb (1-1) has won five straight and is 4-for-4 around two turns. The razor sharp patient type adapts to various pace scenarios and wins this with anything resembling his Derby triumph. The rail post is the wild card because he likes to circle the field and might not get that luxury this time.  #5 Mylute (5-1) is 0-for-7 in the stakes ranks (4 placings) and was hardly disgraced rallying for 5th in the Derby. Napravnik knows this oval well and the LA Derby runner-up can easily land a share. #6 Oxbow (15-1) was too close to the fast Derby pace and held well for 6th considering the demanding fractions. He should stalk the pace under Stevens and could grab a piece. #9 Itsmyluckyday (10-1) was fast in Florida (January) but failed to fire in the Derby despite strong training sessions. He drew perfectly (outside stalker) and I like the rider switch to Johnny V. Orb beat him in his last pair. #7 Will Take Charge (12-1) finished a troubled 8th in the Derby and can move up 2nd off the shelf. He has yet to win beyond 8.5f. #2 Goldencents (8-1) flopped in the Derby and probably hated the wet track. He fits off his SA Derby win but meets other speed and is a bit suspect on stamina. #8 Govenor Charlie (12-1) has plenty of upside with only three races. He has a bright future but this is a tough spot. #3 Titletown Five (30-1) beat Orb in a Saratoga sprint last summer and looks best around one turn. He is eligible for an entry level spot and figures to attend the pace before weakening. THE PLAYS: #4 to win, Exacta Box 1-4, Trifecta 1-4/ALL/5, Trifecta 1-4/1-4-5-6-9/1-4-5-6-9, Trifecta 2-4-9/1/ALL

PIM 13 (Alw-1x, 8.5f) #10 CROWN POLIS (6-1) exits a romping course/distance claiming win and McMahon excels first off the claim. He projects a tactical trip. #4 Mabroom (20-1) handles any footing, is bred to route, and has won around two turns before (turf). New trainer Leatherbury shows a profit first off the claim. #8 Code West (4-5) missed by a neck as the heavy favorite on the Derby undercard and is surprisingly back facing older two weeks later. He is 1-for-8 and has lost as the favorite three times. THE PLAYS: #10 to win, Trifecta 4-10/4-8-10/ALL

Double/Pick 3/Pick 4/Pick 5 contenders – in order of preference


1   (5-6-1-3)
2   (5-7-9-3)
3   (7-5-8-6)
4   (3-6-4)
5   (7-9-14-5)
6   (7-9-2)
7   (9-1-4)
8   (3-7-6)
9   (1-5-4-3)
10 (4-8-7-10)
11 (5-4-9-2-1)
12 (4-1)
13 (10-4-8)

Black-Eyed Susan Day 2013 Analysis Recap

Thanks to everyone for purchasing my Black-Eyed Susan Day analysis from Pimlico on Friday, May 17. For those who missed it, I have included highlights and analysis below. My 2013 Preakness Day full card is complete and ready to purchase.

Check out my Saturday (May 18) Preakness Day full card analysis from Pimlico (available now) and Bonus Free Pick (PIM 13th race, click view sample) at

Upcoming full cards:

Pimlico (Sat. May 18 – Preakness Day) – available now!
(Fri. June 7 – Brooklyn ‘Cap Day)
Belmont (Sat. June 8 – Belmont Stakes Day)
Churchill Saturdays (May 25, June 1, June 15, June 22, June 29)

Black-Eyed Susan Day analysis highlights:

PIM 3 HEART OF ROME ($6.40), Exacta ($16.60)
PIM 4 HAYWIRED ($6.20), Exacta ($24.60)
Pick 3 (2-4, $41.30)
Pick 3 (8-10, $9.95)
Pick 3 (9-11, $23.70)
PIM 12 LAST GUNFIGHTER, best bet #2, $3.20), Exacta ($7)
Pick 3 (race 10-12, $21.30)
Pick 4 (race 9-12, $47.10)
Pick 5 (race 8-12, $60.20)

Orb Kentucky Derby 2013

Can anybody topple Orb in Preakness 2013? – photo by Eclipse Sportswire

Black-Eyed Susan Day full card analysis from Pimlico (5-17-13)
By Jarrod Horak (,  
:  Mostly Sunny. High 84.  Best Bets (races 8, 12, 13)

PIM 1 (Str-Hcp, 8.5f) #2 FRANSTEIN (5-2) can spring forward 3rd off the shelf. She hails from a profitable barn, has won here before, and is a 6-time winner at this trip. #8 Bayonne (2-1) gets pace to chase in the paper race and does some of her best work at this distance. #4 Side by Side (9-2) was nabbed out her last by claiming artist Cathal Lynch. She exits a sharp Parx sprint win and should be forwardly placed but I’m not sure she wants to go this far. THE PLAYS: #2 to win, Exacta 2/4-8, Exacta 4-8/2

PIM 2 (MSW, 8.5T) #3 YUZURU (5-1) makes her first start in more than seven months for profitable layoff trainer Matz. Dam has tossed two turf winners and she looks ready to roll off the shelf. #7 More Than Sweet (7-2) broke last from post 1 in her Keeneland sprint bow and ended up a respectable 4th that day. Motion excels first turf and dam has tossed five turf winners. She is by More Than Ready so there is turf breeding on top as well. #2 Queen Jezebel (15-1) is bred for turf but did not handle the sod for Shirreffs in her SoCal bow. She finished a decent 3rd here (off the turf) April 13 and current trainer Corrales excels 2nd off the shelf. #8 Jessica C (10-1) ran out of ground as the beaten favorite in her 5f turf sprint bow here April 14. Dam has tossed three turf winners and she is bred to handle today’s added ground. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta Box 3-7, Exacta 3-7/2-8

PIM 3 (OC-50/1x, 6f) #5 HEART OF ROME (7-2) landed the place in both starts since the Dilodovico claim. She had more speed before her last pair and owns running style versatility in a race with plenty of early zip. She seems to enjoy completing the Exacta so I will tread a bit lightly on the win end. #3 Orlyana Queen (9-2) exits a sharp course/distance wire job and Vazquez excels with his recent grads trying winners for the first time. #7 Talent n Passion (8-5) has speed to burn and Rodriguez excels with shippers. She is not the only early runner and won’t offer any value. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta 5/3-7, Exacta 3-7/5  

PIM 4 (Alw-1x, 6f) #3 HAYWIRED (6-1) is dangerous when he grabs the early lead. He was bumped at the start in a turf sprint last time and can rebound on preferred footing with a clean start. #8 Outbacker (4-1) finished 2nd in a fast Laurel race when last seen more than six months ago. Wolfendale excels with 90+ day layoff runners and he is 2-for-2 at this distance. #1 Dance With Bull (7-2) disappointed here last out but is another rebound threat if he gets involved early. #7 Grain (5-2) was competitive in all four starts last year. Voss struggles with this type of layoff runner but the profitable low profile trainer is having some success at the current stand. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta Box 3-8, Exacta 3-8/1-7

PIM 5 (Alw-1x, 8.5T) #3 HEAR THE WORD (5-1) makes his first start in 8+ months and new trainer Wyatt excels with 90+ day layoff runners. #5 Locche (8-1) exits a troubled 4th vs. this kind April 21 and he rallied nicely after falling way behind early. He hails from a profitable low profile barn and can go better following a spin over the local green. #8 Fly’n Bayou (9-2) finished a nose in front of Locche last time and he also rallied from far back. He can move up 2nd off the shelf. #12 Readyshakego (4-1) was competitive in both Gulfstream turf starts and barn shows a profit with layoff runners. It won’t be easy from this post and the 3yo takes on older. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta Box 3-5, Exacta 3-5/8-12

PIM 6 (Skipat, 6f) #2 FUNNYS APPROVAL (9-2) lost for the first time on dirt in the G2 Ruffian (one mile) at Aqueduct April 6. Today’s shorter trip helps and this is a softer spot as well. I like her early-pressing versatility. #5 Dance to Bristol (7-5) has fired Exacta shots in 13 of 14 starts and shoots for a four-bagger today. #3 Winning Image (3-1) likes to win races and runs well fresh. She is a need to lead type. THE PLAYS: #2 to win, Exacta 2/3-5, Exacta 3-5/2

PIM 7 (OC-25k/2x, 8.5T) #3 ROCK IN BAGE (10-1) exits a romping $10k synthetic route win at Keeneland and McMahon excels first off the claim. The 8yo horse was once this good on turf. #7 Livingston Street (9-2) also goes first off the claim (Trombetta) and he has been part of the Exacta in 7 of last 9. #5 Humble and Hungry (7-2) finished 2nd in the G2 Dixie here last year. The lightly raced 5yo horse needed his last start and attracts Napravnik. He has had physical problems since his 2011 sophomore season. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta 3/5-7, Exacta 5-7/3   

PIM 8 (Miss Preakness, 6f) #5 BLUEEYESINTHEREIN (3-1) found Grade 3 foes and seven panels a bit too much at CD May 3. She won her first 3 starts (2 at 6f) and earned a quality number April 12. #9 Lighthouse Bay (8-1) needed her Gulfstream return April 4. She is best as a stalker and reunites with winning pilot Carmouche. #8 I’m Mom’s Favorite (8-5) exits a romping course-distance tally and earned a strong number for sharp trainer Tony Dutrow. #2 Tread (9-2) showed fighting spirit in 2 wins and a nose defeat at Fair Grounds this winter. Rosario hops aboard Stall’s pace player. THE PLAYS: #5 to win, Exacta Box 5-9, Exacta 5-9/2-8

PIM 9 (Jim McKay Turf Sprint, 5T) #6 KENS CAPE (12-1) beat stablemate Ben’s Cat here last April and enters in decent form. He is a prominent throughout threat in his 3rd start off the shelf. #1 Spring to the Sky (10-1) won his lone turf sprint try last year and was competitive vs. the likes of Summer Front. Castellano has booted him home twice. #7 Ben’s Cat (9-5) is a 20-for-30 win machine for Leatherbury. The 7yo gelding won his local return April 6. #2 Bridgetown (8-5) usually fires a fresh shot so the 6-month layoff is not a big deal. He hits hard at five panels. THE PLAYS: #6 to win, Trifecta 1-6/1-2-6-7/1-2-6-7

PIM 10 (G2 Black-Eyed Susan, 9f) #3 FIFTYSHADESOFHAY (2-1) ran into 2yo champ and Kentucky Oaks runner-up Beholder in her last pair. The Baffert trainee dons the hood and drilled a strong bullet at CD May 10. #7 Emollient (9-5) controlled proceedings throughout in facile G1 Ashland wire job at Keeneland April 6. She meets other speed on different footing and figures to take a ton of action. She handles conventional dirt and is not a need to lead type. #5 Walkwithapurpose (5-1) has been pointing to this event for quite some time. The Sagamore Farms filly has been stabled here since March and has a nose for the wire. THE PLAYS: #3 to win, Exacta 3/5-7, Exacta 5-7/3

PIM 11 (Very One, 5T) #14 THERE IS NO LIMIT (8-1) is a decent turf sprinter and Napravnik booted her home at Keeneland April 18. #3 Sensible Lady (6-1) is 2-for-2 here and can move up 2nd off the shelf. #13 Sweet Cassiopeia (5-2) has won 5 straight and is 3-for-3 at this trip. #10 Spun Cat (5-1) is a sharp pace factor under Rosario. #7 Sounds of the City (6-1) is usually in the hunt. THE PLAYS: #14 to win, Trifecta 3-14/3-7-10-13-14/3-7-10-13-14

PIM 12 (G3 Pimlico Special, 9.5f) #7 LAST GUNFIGHTER (7-5) has rattled off five straight for Chad Brown and should sit a nice tactical trip. Castellano is 2-for-2 with him and he runs well fresh. #4 Eighttofasttocatch (9-5) will take them as far as he can. The 7yo gelding cruised here April 20 and faded badly in this event last year when he failed to get the early lead. #5 Richard’s Kid (7-2) has dropped nine straight and has lost a step at age 8. The classy MD-bred will almost certainly take too much win action under Napravnik. THE PLAYS: Exacta 7-4

PIM 13 (Hilltop, 8.5T) #10 SUMMER OF FUN (4-1) rallied to land the show in the BC Juvenile Fillies Turf last year and winner Flotilla just captured the French 1,000 Guineas. She cruised in her March return at the Gulf and was flattered when the 2-3 finishers from that heat both came back to score. The versatile filly is a neck shy of a 3-for-3 record at this distance. #1 Kitten’s Point (5-2) won a Grade 3 turf route at GP this winter and beat my top in Kentucky last year. #4 Birdlover (5-1) is a pace player for Krigger/O’Neill.  Look out if she sneaks away early. THE PLAYS: #10 to win, Exacta 10/1-4, Exacta 1-4/10

Double/Pick 3/Pick 4/Pick 5 contenders – in order of preference


1   (2-8-4)
2   (3-7-2-8)
3   (5-3-7)
4   (3-8-1-7)
5   (3-5-8-12)
6   (2-5-3)
7   (3-7-5)
8   (5-9-8-2)
9   (6-1-7-2)
10 (3-7-5)
11 (14-3-13-10-7)
12 (7-4)
13 (10-1-4)

Preakness 2013 Preview: Will Orb overcome inside post?

The field has been set for Preakness 2013 and even money favorite Orb will break from the rail.

Preakness 2013 Post Positions

PP, Horse, Trainer, Jockey, ML Odds

 1. Orb, Shug McGaughey, Joel Rosario  1-1
2. Goldencents, Doug O’Neill, Kevin Krigger  8-1
3. Titletown Five, D. Wayne Lukas, Julien Leparoux  30-1
4. Departing, Al Stall Jr., Brian Hernandez Jr.  6-1
5. Mylute, Tom Amoss, Rosie Napravnik  5-1
6. Oxbow, D. Wayne Lukas, Gary Stevens  15-1
7. Will Take Charge, D. Wayne Lukas, Mike Smith  12-1
8. Govenor Charlie, Bob Baffert, Martin Garcia  12-1
9. Itsmyluckyday, Eddie Plesa Jr., John Velazquez  10-1

Preakness 2013

Jarrod Horak’s Preakness 2013 Preview (in post position order):

1. Orb (Malibu Moon) – Tabasco Cat is the only horse in the last 41 years to win the Preakness Stakes from post one and Orb likes to make wide, sweeping moves. If he is a legit Triple Crown threat the inside post will not bother him and Rosario continues to ride great. I have always liked Shug’s colt but he won’t offer any value in Baltimore.

2. Goldencents (Into Mischief) – SA Derby winner hated the Derby wet track and the pace scenario did not help his cause. He is a quality speed horse but needs everything to go his way to compete vs. these at this distance. Krigger might send him and play catch me if you can.

3. Titletown Five (Tiznow) – He finished in front of Orb in a Saratoga maiden race last summer. He has raw talent but is best as a sprinter at this stage. Interesting that patient rider Leparoux takes over. They are trying to get him to relax.

4. Departing (War Front) – Playing the part of Red Bullet is Departing and taking over the role of Fusaichi Pegasus is Orb. At least that is what trainer Al Stall Jr.  is hoping. He is 4-for-5 lifetime and the LA Derby was a productive prep. He did not beat much in the Illinois Derby but looked good doing it.

5. Mylute (Midnight Lute) – He is winless in seven stakes outings but is usually in the hunt. Napravnik was the queen of Maryland racing when she rode at Laurel/Pimlico and she really wants to win the Preakness.

6. Oxbow (Awesome Again) – Lukas trainee was done in by the quick Derby splits but hung in there to finish a fine 6th. His main problem is that he pulled off wire jobs in both career wins but is not quick enough to grab the early lead in the Preakness.

7. Will Take Charge (Unbridled’s Song) – Smarty Jones/Rebel winner finished a troubled 8th in the Derby. He is a bit interesting if he finds clear sailing under Mike Smith but is not fast enough and has yet to win beyond a mile and a sixteenth.

8. Govenor Charlie (Midnight Lute) – G3 Sunland Derby hero is lightly raced and on the improve. He lacks seasoning and has recovered from the minor hind foot issue that forced him to miss the Derby. Look for him to make some noise later this year.

9. Itsmyluckyday (Lawyer Ron) – Eddie Plesa’s colt got the best of the draw based on his preferred outside stalk and pounce style. The Florida Derby runner-up flopped in the Derby and may have peaked in January. Orb beat him in his last pair.

Check out my Friday & Saturday (May 17-18) Black-Eyed Susan & Preakness Day full card analysis from Pimlico (available now) and Bonus Free Pick (PIM 8th race, click view sample) at

Upcoming full cards:
(Fri. May 17 – Black-Eyed Susan Day) – available now!
Pimlico (Sat. May 18 – Preakness Day) – available now!
(Fri. June 7 – Brooklyn ‘Cap Day)
Belmont (Sat. June 8 – Belmont Stakes Day)
Churchill Saturdays (May 25, June 1, June 15, June 22, June 29)

Preakness Day – Saturday, May 19, 2012

Derby Wars

Derby Wars

Play the Derby Wars $10k Preakness Day game and $1,000 survivor.

We have a $10,000 Preakness Day game on tap for Saturday. The buy in is $77 and the payoff goes down to 29th place.

Also scheduled for Saturday is our $1,000 Preakness survivor.  The Derby Wars survivor games are a great value. The buy in is $4 and you can purchase up to three entries. If you selection finishes 1st, 2nd, or 3rd, you survive to the next contest race. First place gets $750 and second place brings home $250.

Fast Track Radio Show

As usual, I will be joining Steve Bortstein on the Fast Track this weekend. The show airs weekends at 10am ET and we do frequently go over the following hour by about 5-10 minutes, so we’re not automatically done at 11am ET. I will also be joining Steve on Friday morning to start the Preakness discussions early. Click here to listen to the show.

Horse Racing Nation

Horse Racing Nation

Check out HRN for updated Preakness 2012 news, including results, recaps, videos, and selections.

For Friday, I posted free analysis of the Black-Eyed Susan Stakes and Pimlico Special. Saturday’s Pimlico free selection is the Alaire DuPont Distaff Stakes.

Pick 6 Blog

Friday night’s Betfair Hollywood Park Pick 6 Tickets are now available for your viewing pleasure. It looks like a moderately tough sequence and make sure to check back for Saturday’s Pick 6 tickets as well. In addition to my Pick 6 tickets, I am also now including a best bet and live longshot for each Hollywood Park program.

Today’s Racing Digest

I am offering full card analysis for Preakness Day on my Today’s Racing Digest Handicapper Page.

The cost is $10 and includes wagering strategies for all 13-races.

I have also posted a bonus Saturday free play (Pimlico race 8) on my Digest Handicapper page (click view sample).

Preakness Day analysis + bonus free play

2011 Preakness Profile: Astrology

The Kentucky Derby pace was surprisingly soft and if they try to go that slow again look for Astrology and jockey Mike Smith to make their presence felt throughout from the cozy rail.

Steve Asmussen

Trainer Steve Asmussen has saddled two Preakness winners - photo by Eclipse Sportswire

Astrology showed ability right out of the box as a juvenile at Saratoga with a debut show finish and an extended sprint maiden win over To Honor And Serve. He was the beaten favorite in the Garden State Stakes at Monmouth in his third outing and rebounded to win Churchill’s Iroquois in October. He ended his juvenile season with a place finish behind Santiva in the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes under the Twin Spires.

He got a late start on the 2011 Kentucky Derby trail and was forced to miss the first Saturday in May after a pair of runner-up efforts in the March 27 Sunland Derby and April 23 Jerome.

The son of A.P. Indy is no longer behind schedule for Steve Asmussen and he has the talent to make a longshot run for Preakness glory on Saturday.  He figures to save all of the ground on or near the lead and should have every chance if good enough.

2011 Preakness Profile: Midnight Interlude

Santa Anita Derby hero Midnight Interlude flopped on the first Saturday in May but the Bob Baffert trainee is Preakness bound after a strong work at Churchill Downs on May 16.

The unraced juvenile was a well-beaten 3rd in his dirt sprint debut at Santa Anita in January and showed promise in a flat mile runner-up effort at that same venue second time out. He graduated in style in his next outing and went to the Santa Anita Derby with a puncher’s chance.

2011 Preakness logo

He sat behind Comma To The Top in the SA Derby and wore that one down to score at 13-1. He took too much action on the first Saturday in May due to the presence of trainer Bob Baffert and he never got involved and finished 16th.

The son of War Chant breezed a sharp three furlongs in :35.60 at Churchill Downs on Monday and it is all system go for the Preakness.

He figures to sit a cozy tactical trip at Pimlico and will get the services of last year’s winning Preakness pilot Martin Garcia. He would not be the first horse to follow up a Derby dud with a Preakness smasher.

2011 Preakness Profile: Nehro

Kentucky Derby runner-up Nehro might skip the 2011 Preakness and wait for the Belmont Stakes but he figures to take plenty of wagering action if his connections opt to run him in Baltimore.

Trained by Steve Asmussen and owned by Zayat Stables, Nehro was slow to develop. After back-to-back unplaced efforts, the 3-year-old son of Mineshaft graduated nicely in a flat mile special weight affair at Oaklawn Park on Feb 21.

2011 Preakness logo

The aforementioned maiden win seemed to light a fire under Nehro because he returned to just miss in the Louisiana Derby at 36-1. He returned three weeks later to lose another photo in the Arkansas Derby and he headed to Churchill Downs as the wise guy horse.

Surprisingly, the Derby had no pace and Nehro’s rider Corey Nakatani sensed the slow fractions and made a smart early move. He was run down by Animal Kingdom and landed the place once again.

The Kentucky Derby was his third start in six weeks and it might be asking too much to come back in two weeks on the third Saturday in May. If he waits for the Belmont Stakes he would be running on five weeks rest.  He breezed four furlongs in :50.80 at Churchill Downs on May 16.

2011 Preakness Profile – Animal Kingdom

In this first in a series of 2011 Preakness contender profiles, I will look at the chances of Animal Kingdom in the second jewel of the Triple Crown.

Animal Kingdom, owned by Team Valor and trained by Graham Motion, has not missed a beat in five career starts. He rallied through traffic to land the place behind subsequent Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf show finisher Willcox Inn in his off the turf Polytrack debut at Arlington Park last September. He easily graduated in a Keeneland synthetic route second time out for Wayne Catalano and that effort concluded his juvenile campaign.

Animal Kingdom

Do you like Animal Kingdom in the Preakness? - photo by Eclipse Sportswire

He returned under the care of Graham Motion and just missed in a flat mile turf route at Gulfstream Park on March 3. The March 26 Spiral Stakes was his breakthrough performance and his lone dirt work prior to the first Saturday in May was strong.

His rally from 12th place in the Derby was exceptional and the consistent performer handles any ground and has been part the exacta in all five lifetime starts.

How will he react to returning in two weeks at Pimlico? The $100,000 Keeneland sales graduate is obviously on the upswing but the Derby pace was slow and a quicker pace in Baltimore could dull his late kick.

Animal Kingdom has the pedigree to run all day and things could get exciting if he wins the Preakness but let’s not get ahead of ourselves. He has a realistic shot at winning in Baltimore but gamblers might want to look elsewhere for more value.