Medal Count Popular in Casual Media Poll
by Claire Novak
Date Posted: 5/3/2014 12:33:29 PM
Last Updated: 5/6/2014 11:03:31 AM

Medal Count
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Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt

A casual poll of media members covering the 140th running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (gr. I) at Churchill Downs found Spendthrift Farm's Medal Count most popular May 3.

Medal Count, the runner-up in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) on Polytrack at Keeneland, is a Dynaformer colt who has progressed forwardly in the past month under the supervision of trainer Dale Romans. As of shortly after noon on May 3, his odds were 24-1 while California Chrome was sitting at 2-1.

Eric Mitchell: Hoping to Turn Medal Into Roses — Romans: Medal Count His Best Derby Horse Yet 

Other runners from the 19-horse field that were popular with members of the media included TwinSpires.com Wood Memorial (gr. I) winner Wicked Strong and runner-up Samraat, Arkansas Derby (gr. I) winner Danza, Louisiana Derby (gr. II) runner-up Intense Holiday, and Robert B. Lewis (gr. II) winner Candy Boy, who was third in the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) behind California Chrome.

Josh Abner, Louisville Courier-Journal
1. Danza
2. Commanding Curve
3. Wicked Strong
"Loved his close as a 2-year-old in the Saratoga Special (gr. II). Coming back at 3, he now looks great moving on the track with the potential to improve."

Frank Angst, Blood-Horse
1. Wicked Strong 
2. Dance With Fate
3. California Chrome
"I think the pace sets up for him and I liked his Wood Memorial race."

Jerry Bossert, New York Daily News
1. Wicked Strong
2. Danza
3. California Chrome
"I think there's going to be a fast pace, and he's one of the best closers in the field."

Pia Catton, Wall Street Journal
1. Danza
2. Wicked Strong
3. Candy Boy
"Chip Woolley (2009 Kentucky Derby winning-trainer) picked him."

Jim Chairusmi, Wall Street Journal
1. Wicked Strong
2. Dance With Fate
3. Intense Holiday
"Looking for a closer and I think his finish in the Wood showed he's a strong horse."

Pat Cummings, Trakus
1. Medal Count
2. Samraat
3. California Chrome
"Medal Count covered the most ground in the Blue Grass, he has a fairly explosive win over dirt, I thought he probably moved too soon last time and then galloped out really well past Dance With Fate. Dale made it really clear he's always thought he's a Derby horse."

Jody Demling, 84WHAS
1. California Chrome
2. Medal Count
3. Candy Boy
"He looks like the best horse in the field and he's going to run like the best horse in the field. I've already tried to go against him too many times."

Ed DeRosa, Brisnet.com
1. Ride On Curlin
2. Danza
3. Samraat
"He's getting good at the right time and of all the horses, I think the mile and a quarter will improve him the most. Plus, (jockey) Calvin (Borel)."

Greg Hall, Louisville Courier-Journal
1. Medal Count
2. Danza
3. California Chrome
"Medal Count is well-suited to capitalize and has experience in traffic, something lacking in the past races of many others."

Evan Hammonds, Blood-Horse
1. Danza
2. Candy Boy
3. Samraat
"Impressive Arkansas Derby, not afraid of the pedigree, horse has looked great all week."

Tim Layden, Sports Illustrated
1. California Chrome
2. Danza
3. Wicked Strong
"I'm buying the hype. Best horse wins."

Tom Leach, UK Network
1. Medal Count
2. Wicked Strong
3. Danza
"He's well-bred to get the Derby distance."

Lucas Marquardt, Thoroughbred Daily News
1. California Chrome
2. Danza
3. Dance With Fate
"California Chrome's pace lines have been terrific all year; he can run fast early and still have something left for the finish, physically he's built like a classic, two-turn horse, and he has the pedigree to go along with it."

Ed McNamara, Newsday
1. Intense Holiday
2. California Chrome
3. Samraat
"He's training very well, can close, and looks like he has upside."

Penelope Miller, America's Best Racing
1. California Chrome
2. Danza
3. Intense Holiday
"Just because he's been so outstanding all prep season; I think he's the horse to beat."

Ron Mitchell, Blood-Horse
1. Danza
2. General a Rod
3. Wicked Strong
"I really like General a Rod, but I can't pick him, otherwise I'd jinx him."
 
Tom Pedulla, America's Best Racing
1. California Chrome
2. General a Rod
3. Samraat
"Sentimental choice."

Jennie Rees, Louisville Courier-Journal
1. Intense Holiday
2. Candy Boy
3. Medal Count
"Touted us with his huge workout and he'll benefit from all the speed."

Nicole Russo, Daily Racing Form
1. Medal Count
2. Danza
3. Samraat
"I think he's getting better with work, and I've never seen Dale this confident."

Gary West, ESPN.com
1. Intense Holiday
2. Danza
3. Wicked Strong
"I think the pace will heat up and set it up for a late runner and of those, Intense Holiday is training best here.

Tim Wilkin, Albany Times-Union
1. Medal Count
2. Wicked Strong
3. Samraat
"I think he's sitting on the race of his career."

Alicia Wincze-Hughes, Lexington Herald-Leader
1. Medal Count
2. Samraat
3. Danza
"I've never seen Dale Romans this confident in a horse he's going to lead over for a race."



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