That Always Dreaming came home on top in the Derby might not have surprised handicappers. However, the result underscored the importance of this rapidly emerging branch of a line which is often misidentified as that of Fappiano, sire of Unbridled.
Bodemeister's first starters at Pimlico this weekend
Two stallions represented in this year's Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) already bear the mantle of Derby-winning sire. Their racing careers and their paths as stallions could not be more different.
Marker's 46 Mile, Coolmore Jenny Wiley, Arkansas Derby, Apple Blossom, Oaklawn Handicap, Stonestreet, Ben Ali, Appalachian, Fantasy, Los Angeles, Count Fleet Sprint Handicap, Lion City Handicap, Prix Vanteaux, Singapore Turf Club, Bachelor and more.
Trainer Miguel Hernandez said Conquest Mo Money came out of the Arkansas Derby (G1) well and that he and owner Tom McKenna will discuss whether to pay the $200,000 for a supplemental nomination to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1).
Instead of listening to outside noise, Mark Casse heeded what his champion charge was telling him. And when the rubber hit the road in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) April 15, the Hall of Fame finalist's instincts where proven dead-on accurate.
Classic Empire let his actions silence some of the doubts that had mounted since February when he surged past Conquest Mo Money and Malagacy in late stretch to capture the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
Each week BloodHorse.com looks forward to the weekend's biggest races. This week we have the final preps for the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) at Oaklawn Park and Keeneland.
Just like 2015 with Far Right and Whitmore last year, trainer Ron Moquett is trying to get to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) with only one candidate—Arkansas Derby (G1) contender Petrov.
At this point, handicappers can be excused for being a trifle gun-shy when it comes to evaluating this crop of 3-year-olds, simply because the most consistent thing about them has been their inconsistency.
J. Keeler Johnson handicaps the Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park.
This week's "Look Back" feature is a stakes report of the 1968 Arkansas Derby won by Nodouble, who would go on to earn a classic placing by finishing third in the Preakness Stakes.
Thanks to lack of the clarity on the Road to the Kentucky Derby, Classic Empire could bring the hype full circle back to him should the 8-5 morning-line favorite prevail in the Arkansas Derby against 11 others.
Mike Langford has campaigned two millionaires, but it's a horse with $256,800 in earnings under the care of Hall of Fame trainer Steve Asmussen that the Jonesboro, Ark., owner calls his most talented runner to date.
Although L and N Racing didn't start its first horse until June 2015, the partnership has already hit a home run in Lookin At Lee, who was purchased for $70,000 at the Keeneland September yearling sale.
WinStar Farm, China Horse Club, and SF Racing's undefeated One Liner is out indefinitely and will miss his planned start in the April 15 Arkansas Derby (G1) and is off the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) trail.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile champion Classic Empire turned in his final serious drill in advance of his expected run in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1), breezing an easy half-mile in :50 at Winding Oaks Farm in Ocala the morning of April 8.
John Oxley's reigning juvenile champion Classic Empire worked April 3 at Winding Oaks Farm in Ocala, Fla. in preparation for his anticipated start in the Arkansas Derby (G1) April 15 at Oaklawn Park.
Following a strong five-furlong work March 28 at Winding Oaks Farm near Ocala, Fla., the connections of Classic Empire set the Arksansas Derby (G1) as the next target for last year's champion juvenile male.
Uncontested will likely make his next start in the $1 million Arkansas Derby (G1) April 15 at Oaklawn Park, co-owner Harry Rosenblum said Feb. 22.
Last year, we undertook a review of the prospects of stallions with first 2-year-olds of 2016. The series focused on pedigree and biomechanical values as well as on our impressions of how their offspring performed at the juvenile sales.
Darby Dan Farm's freshman sire Dialed In held onto the title of leading North American first-crop sire, which he claimed after moving past Lane End's Union Rags in late November.
Bode's Dream registered a comfortable front-running victory in the $75,000 House Party Stakes, scoring by 2 3/4 lengths in the first of six $75,000 stakes on the Dec. 10 Juvenile Showcase card at Gulfstream Park.
Calumet Farm will introduce four new stallions in 2017, led by 2015 champion turf male Big Blue Kitten.
Creator, the 3-year-old colt by Tapit who won the 2016 Belmont Stakes (gr. I) and Arkansas Derby (gr. I), has been sold by WinStar Farm and Bobby Flay to the Japan Bloodhorse Breeders' Association.
|Horse||Trainer||Breeder / Owner|
|Atigun||James A. Jerkens||
|Cozzetti||Dale L. Romans||
|Isn't He Clever||Henry Dominguez||
|Jake Mo||W. Bret Calhoun||
|Najjaar||Daniel C. Peitz||
|Raconteur||Todd A. Pletcher||
|Sabercat||Steven M. Asmussen||
|Secret Circle||Bob Baffert||
Upcoming Stakes Entries
|Prairie Rose S.||PRM|
|Chariot Chaser H.||NP|
|Wild Rose H.||NP|
|Jack Bishop S.||PRM|
|Arlington Classic S. (G3T)||AP|