This Saturday sees the running of the premier race of the Indiana Grand race schedule, with the running if the Grade 3 Indiana Derby.
Top-Class Field Assembles for Grade 1 Stephen Foster
The talented six year-old Lea is the 7/5 morning line favorite as the Bill Mott trainee seeks his first grade 1 stakes victory. In three starts this year, Lea has […]
The talented six year-old Lea is the 7/5 morning line favorite as the Bill Mott trainee seeks his first grade 1 stakes victory. In three starts this year, Lea has won the Grade 3 Hal’s Hope and finished a narrow second in the Grade 1 Donn Handicap – both at Gulfstream Park – before running third the $10 million Dubai World Cup. Lea has bankrolled over $1.1 million in 2015 and $1.8 million in his career. Despite the “Dubai Effect” that often plagues horses making their first starts following the long journey, Mott has proven successful in similar situations with champion Royal Delta returning from a start in the Dubai World Cup to win the 2012 Fleur de Lis Handicap at Churchill. Lea recorded the fastest four furlong move of 69 runners working the same distance at Saratoga June 6 in his final tune-up for the Foster.
Baffert sends out another stable star
Trainer Bob Baffert will look to continue his run of success following American Pharoah’s Triple Crown triumph with Hoppertunity (5/2), returning to make his first start since a third place finish in the Grade 2 San Antonio February 7. Hoppertunity has already proven his class and affinity for the Churchill Downs surface, winning the Grade 1 Clark Handicap last November.
Commissioner in top form
Commissioner (3/1) easily won the Grade 3 Pimlico Special May 15 and was runner-up in the 2014 Belmont to eventual winner Tonalist. Trained by Todd Pletcher, the four year-old colt appears to be razor-sharp.
Players looking to create betting value in the 2016 Preakness May 21 at Pimlico face a familiar dilemma in horse racing: create value underneath the heavy favorite or decide whether the heavy favorite is beatable for the top spot.
On Thursday at Churchill Downs, the Kentucky Derby week festivities will begin with the $100,000 Kentucky Juvenile Stakes. The five-furlong contest has drawn a field of nine two-year-olds.
Likely a top three betting choice in the Kentucky Derby, Santa Anita Derby winner Exaggerator is a bit of a puzzling case as handicappers begin the process of sorting out contenders in the weeks leading up to the big race.