Wood Memorial and More, Saturday April 9th

Well, there were a ton, of great stakes races to chose from this weekend, and I had a really hard time choo – choo – choosing which 6 to make the Pick 6 for this weekend.  There were three Derby Prep races scheduled for this weekend, the Wood Memorial, the Bluegrass Stakes, and the Santa Anita Derby, so those three were automatically in.  I really like to get a few races from Aqueduct in because I have a soft spot for the Wood Memorial weekend.  It was tough to do this year, because there were so many great races from Keenland this year.  I finally settled on adding the Carter Handicap for 4yo+.  While I would have loved to throw the Santa Anita Oaks in there, I think Songbird will pretty much have that one wrapped up, unless there is a major upset.  That being said, there were still a whole host of races from Keenland to chose from, so I added in a few with larger fields.  I am really interested to see Stopcharginmaria face off against Sheer Drama, so I put the Madison stakes in as the second race of the day.  Well, enough babbling on, here’s some thoughts on the races this weekend.

First I’d like to point out that we had a few newcomers join the Pick 6 Challenge last week, so welcome!  The more the merrier.

Race 1: Commonwealth Stakes

  • Ready for Rye – a fast horse that reeled off 3 straight wins before a disappointing Breeders Cup, has the speed, 3 1-0-2 at distance, Castellano on top, my favorite for this race
  • Holy Boss – looked unstoppable last year while winning 4 in a row, has shown the speed, working out well, only  1 race at distance though
  • Mylute – another horse coming off a long layoff so we won’t know what he can do, working out really well, seems a more consistent finisher than Viva Majorca

Race 2: Madison Stakes

  • Stopchargingmaria – I thought this horse was done after last year’s Personal Ensign, but she surprised me in the Breeders Cup.  I like the drop to shorter distance, working out well, Castellano / Pletcher combo, won’t get much money if she wins
  • Wavell Avenue – was on  a roll last year, but hasn’t raced in months, hoping she can keep the speed up, 1 win at distance, and 1/1 at Keenland, working out well
  • Sunday Rules – incredible 9 8-0-1 lifetime, has not stretched to this distance yet, fast horse, moving up in class
  • Just Missed – Sheer Drama, Cornelio and I loved her in the Personal Ensign, and made some good scratch with the Got Lucky Exacta, been working out well, hasn’t raced in ages, stakes experience, and has gone the distance, could be a fine price

Race 3: Wood Memorial

  • Shagaf – will probably be your favorite, undefeated in 3 starts, fast horse with a win at Aqueduct already, great trainer jockey combo too
  • Matt King Coal – coming off 2 wins, also has a hot trainer / jockey combo, blistering 101 last time out, will keep things interesting if he goes to the front
  • Outwork – second in the Tampa Derby, another hot trainer / jockey combo, 3 2-1-0 lifetime, working out well also

Race 4: Bluegrass Stakes

  • Donegal Moon – running fast, working out well, big last race, 2 1-1-0 at Keenland, might not win, but should be at the front near the end
  • Zulu – another fast horse that has been racing well, 3 2-1-0 lifetime, got the Castellano / Pletcher combo, working out well
  • Brody’s Cause – was the favorite to win the Tampa Derby but had a bump at the start, hoping that Romans has him back on track, been working out reasonably, good price maybe?
  • Just Missed – Laoban, out of Uncle Mo, second in the Gotham, speed figs have been going up each race, working OK, might not get the win, but use in exotics?

Race 5: Carter Handicap

  • Salutos Amigos – fast, good at distance 7 2-0-1, good at Aqueduct 5 3-0-0, winner of last race, the Toom Fool handicap, good jockey / trainer combo
  • Majestic Affair – another fast horse coming off a win sandwiched between 2 seconds, 4 2-1-0 at distance, limitted experience at the Big A, high percentage trainer
  • Anchor Down – hoping this horse does well at the shorter distance, hot Velazquez / Pletcher combo, gone the distance 3 times 3 1-0-1, working bullets

Race 6: Santa Anita Derby

  • Danzig Candy – winner of his last 3, besing Mor Spirit and Exaggerator in a fast San Felipe, Mike Smith seems to have this horse figured out, 3 for 3 at Santa Anita
  • Mor Spirit – 6 3-3-0 lifetime with loses to Danzig and Airoforce, 4 2-2-0 at Santa Anita, fast horse, will be in the battle with Danzig Candy again
  • Exaggerator -racing well, but couldn’t beat Danzig and Mor Spirit last time in the San Felipe, will be in the mix of this shootout

Well, there are some great races this weekend, and a lot of good horses looking to put in some good races before the Kentucky Derby.  Cornelio is wishing Mark luck at the Big A this weekend.  He’s in an uphill battle, sitting back in 5th place, but maybe his luck will be better at the track.  If not, I hope they have a good time.  Good luck everyone, have a great weekend.

One Comment

  1. CornelioAuthor April 16, 2016 Reply

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