alldayracingSeth Abrams

Editor, All Day Racing.

All articles by alldayracing

 

Arkansas Derby

This week, we’ll return to Oaklawn Park for the jewel of the meet — the Grade I Arkansas Derby. With 100 points to the winner, we will have reached the end of the qualifying for the Kentucky Derby (The 20 point Grade III Lexington at Keeneland will be run a few hours earlier). 9 horses will
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Santa Anita Derby

100 points for the Kentucky Derby are on the line, but there’s so much more at stake in the Santa Anita Derby. On paper, it’s a two-horse race. And those are two sensational horses this time of year. I’ll take a look at the two super-contenders and then also look to see if any horse
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Florida Derby

4 graded stakes winners lead a talented field in this year’s Florida Derby. The Florida Derby, run at 9 furlongs, is a 100-point race for the Kentucky Derby — ensuring the winner a spot in the field. Second place, with 50 points, is a virtual guarantee as well. At the top of the field is Audible. Unseen
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Louisiana Derby

We return to the Fair Grounds for the final time this prep season with the 9 furlong Louisiana Derby — the first 100 point race of the season. The 100 points to win will definitely get you in, and the 40 points for second should do the same. So, you can go from off-the-radar to Kentucky
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The Rebel

Rebel Rebel by the late David Bowie has been in my head since I starting ‘capping the Grade II Rebel. Maybe this great guitar-driven song is now stuck in yours as well — I hope you like it, in that case. But now it’s time to put the music aside and start analyzing this key Derby
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San Felipe Stakes

Three major Kentucky Derby preps this weekend — Gotham Stakes, Tampa Bay Derby, and the San Felipe. Tough choice, but I’ll stay out west (where I play regularly) and see the return (of the favorite) in Bolt D’Oro. Means nothing of course, but I’ve always thought the name of this horse was bad-ass. Bolt D’Oro draws
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Fountain of Youth

Today’s focus on the Derby Trail will be the Fountain of Youth from Gulfstream Park.Its a Kentucky Derby points race and a key race for Derby seeking 3YO’s. Post time is 6:09 ET and its race number 14, closing out of the day of a loaded Gulfstream card. It’s 8.5 furlongs, spelling trouble for horses on the
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Weekday Races: Charles Town #5

When this site started, I did a feature called “Race of the Day.” It’s exactly what it sounds like — I wrote a preview every day. It eventually ran Wednesday through Sunday. As the site began to focus more on Saturday racing, I discontinued Race of the Day in favor of extended coverage of Saturday
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Southwest Stakes

Happy President’s Day! And the “bonus” racing that comes along with it, including a Kentucky Derby Prep from Oaklawn. The Southwest Stakes, a GIII at 8.5 furlongs, has drawn a field of 10, with the scratch of Principe Guiherme. At first glance, it’s a Baffert race to lose, with Mourinho rocking the best speed figure and a
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Risen Star

My first impression when looking at the entires was that Instilled Regard towered over the field. But, on closer look, I found a contender that I like. I’ll talk about Instilled Regard and then visit some contenders who could knock him off if he has an off day. The case was Instilled Regard is strong. He’s been the fastest
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The Sam F. Davis Stakes

Let’s jump on I-75 and move from Gulfstream in Miami up to Tampa Bay Downs for the Sam F. Davis Stakes. The Sam F. Davis is now a points race on the Derby Trail and they’ve drawn some top-notch competition — it’s fairly common from a horse from this race to make it to the
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Holy Bull

The Derby Trail is picking up with 3 points races this week — the Withers, The Holy Bull, and the Robert B. Lewis. The focus is Gulfstream for the second week in a row; We’ll visit some returning friends in a competitive edition of the Holy Bull. The Holy Bull, a Grade II is 8.5
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Pegasus World Cup

We’ll take a break from 3YO to look at the world’s richest race, the $16 million Pegasus World Cup. Held at Gulfstream, it uses a novel approach to entries, which has created a deep, layered field (with one standout favorite in Gun Runner.) I picked Gun Runner to win the 2016 Kentucky Derby, but that turned
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California Derby

We’ll head up the coast to the Bay Area for the California Derby at 3:55 p.m local time. At Golden Gate Fields, it’s a local prep for the El Camino Real Derby — their Kentucky Derby Prep race. Combined with the Spiral from Turfway, these two races create an artificial surface path to the Derby. Today,
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The LeComte

Let’s venture down to New Orleans to the Fairgrounds for their Derby prep series, where they’ve produced some good horses the past few years (but no Kentucky Derby winners.) Today is the GIII LeComte, a 1 mile and 70 yards two-turn route for newly minted 3YO’s. It’s a deep field — before scratches, we have
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Sham Stakes

In trying to evaluate the legacy of Sham, the 1973 Derby and Preakness runner-up, we have to consider he’d probably have won these 2 races in almost any other year. His times are in the top 5 in history — he just happened to be in the same crop with Secretariat. There is a connection
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H. Allen Jerkens Stakes

Always fun to handicap a race type you don’t see that often. Here are some key points on the Jerkens, named for a great horseman: We’ve got a 2-mile route on the Gulfstream Park turf course. Yes, I typed that right — 2 miles…a full 1/4 of a mile longer than the Marathon and the distance
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The Malibu

When I think Malibu, I immediately go to “The Big Lebowski.” STAY OUT OF MALIBU, LEBOWSKI! If you don’t know what I’m talking about, you have a movie to add to your watchlist immediately. If only for the quotes, The GI Malibu is the final graded stakes for 3YO. It’s the final race that is restricted
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King Glorious Stakes

Scouring the country for 2YO routes, we end up right where we were last week. We’re back at Los Alamitos for the King Glorious Stakes, a 1-mile affair for 2YO Cal-breds. King Glorious began his career with a flourish at Golden Gate and then won the G1 Hollywood Futurity. He missed the Triple Crown but
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Los Alamitos Futurity (G1)

Racing resumes at Los Al today after an incredibly tragic day yesterday due to the wildfires spreading to San Luis Rey Downs. Many heroes and many backside workers are still in need. Please check twitter for information on helping. At Los Al, we have a Grade 1 affair for 2 year olds. The downside? Only
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Remsen Stakes (GII)

A 2YO battle at 9 furlongs on Aqueduct’s Outer Track leads the Kentucky Derby trail this week. It’s a great day of racing at the Big A, including the Cigar Mile, so be sure to check out the card. This especially includes the late Pick 4, which adds the Demoiselle, a 9-furlong battle for 2YO
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Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes

What a day of November racing! We’ve got terrific stakes action from Del Mar, including the G1 Hollywood Derby. But I’m going to turn my writing attention to Churchill Downs for the GII Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes — a little before 6 o’clock Eastern time as the 11th race. It’s a 2 turn 1 1/6 mile route
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Desi Arnaz Stakes

Today, we’re going to look at the Desi Arnaz Stakes, a 7-furlong sprint for 2YO fillies from Del Mar. Like last week’s feature race (Bob Hope), it’s the 5th race on the card — pivotal to ending the P5 (for those who play, you don’t need to use the information here). 2YO don’t neccesarily have the
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Bob Hope Stakes

It’s time to get over that Breeders’ Cup hangover. As always, it was a great weekend for all horses and especially the 2YOs, with a win by Good Magic in the Juvenile. Chad Brown is taking over all surfaces, classes, and levels. But racing keeps going year-round — that’s one thing that makes it great.
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Breeders’ Cup Juvenile

Bolt D’Oro is the shortest price M/L favorite in the late P4 and is very likely to be favorite come post time. And there’s a good amount to like about him. Is he your single after dominating the west coast prep series, especially after his 7 3/4 length win routing in the Frontrunner stakes? How about
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Twilight Derby

We’ll roll into California with a 3YO turf stakes race in the Twilight Derby (GII). It is 9 furlongs and on the firm turf. With 2 scratches today, 9 horses are scheduled to enter the starting gate at 3:49 Pacific Time. Here’s a rundown: Cowboy Culture is a horse that likes to win — he’s 5
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The Sleepy Hollow $250K

We are back to routing this week as a large field of eleven goes forward in the Sleepy Hollow Stakes, a 1-mile NY-bred stakes for $250K. 1 mile on the main track at Belmont is a one-turn race. Every year, there are NY-breds in the Kentucky Derby and many more on the Derby trail.  Let’s take
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The Futurity (from Belmont Park)

Our tour of 2YO racing moves to a shorter distance this week with a Grade 3, 6-furlong sprint from Belmont Park. You never know when/how/if these speedy 2YO’s will and find their way onto the Derby Trail, so there is an advantage in watching them early. BYou’ll get the full context of their win (or
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The Champagne Stakes (G1) and the Breeders’ Futurity (G1)

Two grade 1 races for 2YO routing this week, with an additional caveat. Both are part of a cross-country P4 with cooperation between Belmont and Keeneland.  The other 2 races are the G1 Shadwell Turf Mile and the G1 Jockey Club Gold Cup. So, that’s a Pick 4 with 4 G1’s — not something you
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The Frontrunner (G1)

Nothing feels like fall than 2YO’s routing for $300K in a Grade 1 major track affair. That’s what we have with the Frontrunner Stakes, a 1 1/6 Grade 1 later this afternoon at Santa Anita Park. After a summer filled with 5 furlong sprint after 5 furlong sprint, we’ll get on the America Road to the Kentucky
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Will Bayern fool the public again?

I love Bayern. Why? Not because he’s an all-time great racehorse, even though he did win a competitive installment of the Breeders’ Cup Classic last year. Instead, I like him because he befuddles the public — never winning as the favorite and winning several times at high odds. This year, he’s continued his pattern, at least
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In Review: The Oceanside Stakes

The public is a great pre-race handicapper. It is very skilled at taking the available data (i.e. past performances, visual impressions, word of mouth) and whittling it down to accurate estimation of the probability of winning. Their top choice — the post time favorite — wins more than any other horse. In fact, their probability
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Kentucky Derby Contender Profile: Mubtaahij

His path to the Derby is non-traditional, at least when it comes to producing winners. But, despite never having raced on North American soil, Mubtaahij stands a decent chance to buck history and find the Kentucky Derby winner’s circle. His strong stamina base — he has already raced twice at 9.5f — should benefit him well during the
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Kentucky Derby Contender Profile: Materiality

Despite the highest Beyer figure so far from a 3YO (110 in the Florida Derby), Materiality will likely be double-digit odds on Kentucky Derby day.  It’s a combination of figure skepticism, due to the Gulfstream surface, and also the operation of two well-known “curses.”  First, he was unraced at two. No horse since Apollo in 1882 has won
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Kentucky Derby Contender Profile: Carpe Diem

Let’s continue with our video review of top 2015 Kentucky Derby contenders with Carpe Diem, who has been targeting this race since being purchased for $1.6 million as a 2YO. Breeders’ Futurity After debuting with an impressive win over future Swale winner Ready for Rye at 5.5 furlongs, hopes were high for Carpe Diem’s first attempt at
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Kentucky Derby Contender Profile: American Pharoah

American Pharoah is the likely favorite for the Kentucky Derby off the strength of his stellar Oaklawn preps, which build upon the foundation of his Eclipse-award winning 2YO campaign. Here’s his road to the Kentucky Derby. Debut Maiden Race This was the key maiden race of the summer at Del Mar, featuring upset winner Om, American Pharoah,
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Kentucky Derby Contender Profile: Dortmund

The goal of this series is to prepare for the Kentucky Derby by reviewing the racing history of the contenders. By the end of this article, you’ll have a good understanding of what the undefeated Dortmund brings to the Kentucky Derby and while he’ll be a top 2 choice come post time on the first
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Arkansas Derby (GI)

With the move of the Blue Grass, the Arkansas Derby has been left alone as the only major Derby prep three weeks out. This year’s edition is led by American Pharoah, who was ranked #2 in the rankings prior to the final preps. He’s been simply scintillating in his three stakes starts and overwhelms this field
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The Wood Memorial (GI)

It’s the cap to the Aqueduct 3YO season on Saturday with the Wood Memorial. Racing returned to the main track from the inner dirt on Wednesday and a field of seven goes forward. Five return from the Gotham, won by El Kabeir: A very impressive performance visually, although the speed figure came back less than
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Santa Anita Derby (GI)

The Santa Anita Derby concludes the 3YO series in Southern California. The field begins with Dortmund, who was #1 in the latest Derby rankings. He has run the two fastest speed figures in the field, and I don’t imagine that the 9 furlongs — a 1/2 furlong longer than he’s gone before — will be a problem. Dortmund has
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The Blue Grass (GI)

The Blue Grass Stakes (G1) caps a terrific card on Saturday on opening weekend from Keeneland. It’s one of three destinations this week — Santa Anita and Aqueduct are the others — for Kentucky Derby contenders. It starts what should be a banner year for the Lexington, Kentucky racetrack, which hosts the Breeders’ Cup at
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5 Weeks Out: Florida Derby, Lousiana Derby, UAE Derby

Three final preps for Kentucky Derby contenders today. Each race not only awards 100 points to the winner, but also 40 points to second and 20 points to 3rd. So, the top 2 finishers qualify and the 3rd place finisher is well-positioned, especially if he has some  points already. We are five weeks from the Kentucky Derby,
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Kentucky Derby FAQ

A guide to the Kentucky Derby. Covers age and field size, fastest “2 minutes,” purse, surface, and distance. Can a horse of any age race in the Kentucky Derby?  No. The Kentucky Derby is restricted to 3YO horses. High-class horses generally race from about 2YO to around 5YO or 6YO. There are exceptions to this
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Kentucky Derby Top 5, as of March 23

Kentucky Derby Top 5 Written on March 23. We’ve seen some impressive performances over the past couple of weeks, most notably watching American Pharoah return and dominate in the Rebel.  Firing Line, off his loss to Dortmund in amazing fashion in the Robert B. Lewis, shipped to Sunland Park and dominated — although his speed figure came back
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The Sunland Derby (GIII)

An added bonus to the Kentucky Derby trail with the Sunland Derby on Sunday afternoon (5:40 MT). 50 Kentucky Derby qualifying points to the winner. With the scratch of Lord Nelson, it would appear to be a one horse race. Firing Line, fresh off a triple-digit speed figure, ships in from California for a seemingly easy
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The Spiral (GIII)

The Kentucky Derby trail runs through Turfway Park today with Spiral, a 9 furlong test over the track’s artificial dirt surface. It provides the best, if only, route for an artificial surface/turf horse to qualify for the Derby without first showing dirt form. The winner today will receive 50 points — a lock to qualify. Many
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The Rebel (GII)

All eyes toward Oaklawn this weekend with the Rebel featuring the anticipated return of 2YO male champion, American Pharoah.  He’s the second top contender to return to the track in the last two weeks; Carpe Diem made a successful return to the races with an impressive performance winning the Tampa Bay Derby last Saturday: Looking back at
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Recap: From the Swale to the Big Cap, a Great Day of Racing

I kept a live diary of the big races today, including the Big Cap and the Kentucky Derby points races. I’ve added in the videos as well — scroll down for a list and embedded videos. 1:10 P.M. MT: Ready for Rye upsets odds-on Daredevil in the Swale. Ready for Rye ran within a head of
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Kentucky Derby Top Five, as of March 6

Kentucky Derby Top 5 Written on March 6 — eve of the Tampa Bay Derby, Gotham, and San Felipe. The top 4 clearly have separated — at least in my mind — from the rest of the pack. The 5th spot is a tough one — reasonable arguments could be made for Khozan, Far from
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Saturday, March 7: Gotham (GIII), Tampa Bay Derby (GII), San Felipe (GII)

Three Kentucky Derby points races this weekend, with action from Aqueduct, Tampa Bay Downs, and Santa Anita. Races are all scheduled to go off within an hour of one another. Gotham Stakes, Grade III, Aqueduct, 4:50 ET, Saturday. I don’t know what to make of the Withers, in which Far from Over blew the break
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