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2011 Kentucky Derby Prep Race Previews – Feb. 16th

The Road to the Kentucky Derby- February 17th – VOLUME 4

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It is a New Year and a whole new season for horse racing as a number of quality Thoroughbreds celebrated their third birthday on January 1st and are poised to make a name for themselves on the 2011 Triple Crown Trail.

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 mid-April that determine this year’s field. These prep races also provide some solid insight into which horses have the best chance 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 a couple of key prep races from last weekend.

The Robert B. Lewis Stakes at Santa Anita Park- Saturday, Feb.12

The Robert B. Lewis is a grade II stakes race for three year-old Thoroughbreds with a total prize purse of $250,000. It is contested on a dirt track over a distance of 1 1/8 mile. All eyes were on the prohibitive 3-to-10 favorite Tapizar in this race, but the day belonged to Anthony’s Cross, who pulled off a dramatic upset victory in the Robert B. Wood by holding off a charging Riveting Reason by a nose.

Tapizar became a top five contender for the Derby with his win in the Sham Stakes, but he could not hold the lead heading into the stretch, opening the door for a two-horse duel to the finish. Anthony’s Cross, who went off at 8-to-1, had just a maiden win to his credit in his first starts, but is now in line for a run in the Santa Anita Derby in early April.

El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate Fields- Sunday, Feb.13

The El Camino Real Derby is a grade III stakes race for three year-old Thoroughbreds with a total prize purse of $200,000. It is contested on a dirt track over a distance of 1 1/8 mile. Jockey Russell Blaze had to feel pretty good about his chances with third-favorite Silver Medallion in this race after guiding his horse to victory five times in the previous six years.

Rallying from fourth-place in a field of six, Silver Medallion pulled away from the field in the final furlong to capture the El Camino Real by 1 ¼ lengths. Jakesam finished second and 5-to-2 second favorite Positive Response finished third. Comma to the Top, the 1-to-2 favorite weakened in the final 1/16 mile to finish fourth.

This was Silver Medallion’s second straight stakes race victory after winning the Eddie Logan Stakes on the turf at Santa Anita his last time out. With this win, he has already earned $212,904 in six starts. The win also put the colt in line for a run the Santa Anita Derby.

Next Weekend’s big races include the Risen Star Stakes from Fair Grounds and the San Vicente Stakes from Santa Anita.

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. David wants to hear from you so please comment below.

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About Dave Schwab

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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