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Kentucky Derby Prep Race Preview (Apr. 17)

2010 Kentucky Derby Handicapping – Road to the Derby – VOL. 11

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The Road to the Kentucky Derby- April 17th

Leading up to horse racing’s premier event; the Kentucky Derby this May, there are close to 60 prep races between the beginning of the year and the middle of this month that will not only shape this year’s field, but give us a good idea which horses will go off as the favorite to win the Derby and possibly go on to earn the Triple Crown by winning the Preakness and the Belmont as well. Here is a brief re-cap of two of the key races from last weekend.

Here is a brief re-cap of two of the key races from last weekend.

The Arkansas Derby- Saturday, April 10th from Oaklawn Park

The Arkansas Derby is a grade I stakes race for three year olds with a total prize purse of $1,000,000. It is contested on dirt over a distance of 1 1/8 mile. Coming into the race all the talk centered on Derby hopefuls such as Noble’s Promise, Dublin, and Super Saver.

Noble’s Promise went off as an 8-5 favorite and the other two horses figured to be in the mix as well. Few people expected Line of David, who went off with 17-1 odds to be a factor in this race let alone win, but that is exactly what he did.

Trained by John Sadler and ridden for the first time by Jon Court, Line of David took an early lead and was able to hold off a late charge by Super Saver to win by a neck. Dublin captured third and Noble’s Promise finished a disappointing fifth.

This was his first race on natural dirt and his third straight win since Sadler added blinkers to his equipment. Noble’s Promise actually sustained some cuts on his legs in this race and his status for the Derby has suddenly become uncertain.Bet on the Kentucky Derby

The Toyota Blue Grass Stakes-Saturday, April 10th from Keeneland

The Toyota Blue Grass Stakes is a grade I stakes race for three year olds with a total prize purse of $750,000. It is contested on a Polytrack surface over a distance of 1 1/8 mile.

In what makes horse racing such a great sport, 40-1 shot Stately Victor, who was not even expected to run in this race, pulled away from the pack down the stretch to win by an impressive 4 ¼ lengths over second place finisher, Paddy O’Prado. First Dude was a length back and finished third. Interactif, who went off as a 3-1 favorite, never really contended and finished fourth.

Trained by Mike Maker, Stately Victor was an afterthought for this race after finishing off the board in his last five starts. In seven lifetime starts he only has one win, a maiden special weight win at Saratoga last September.

With his $450,000 share of the prize purse, he has now captured enough earnings to qualify for the field of 20 that will run in the Kentucky Derby. This was the largest longshot ever to win this race in its 86 year history.

This Week: – This weekend’s $300,000 grade II Coolmore Lexington Stakes from Keeneland will be the last chance for several Derby hopefuls to secure enough graded stakes earnings to make it into the Derby field.

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David Schwab is a regular contributor to the Cappers Picks Blog. While not cheering for his beloved Philadelphia Eagles David can be found working on his blog at www.eaglesinc.com. David wants to hear from you so please comment below.


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