Blue Grass, Ashland, Madison, Carter Handicap, Santa Anita Derby, Santa Anita Oaks, Queen Elizabeth, Oka Sho, Gazelle, Royal Heroine, Shakertown, Wood Memorial, Transylvania, Providencia, Excelsior, Disftaff H., Commonwealth, Bay Shore and more.
Consider this your weekly guide to the best stakes in North America. This week we have massive stakes cards at Aqueduct Racetrack, Keeneland, and Santa Anita Park built around three top Triple Crown preps.
- By Dave Litfin
- Thoroughbred Racing, Handicapping, Southeast Region, Southwest Region, West Region, Kentucky
Horse players will need three sets of eyes to keep track of this week's action, as Aqueduct Racetrack, Keeneland, and Santa Anita Park all run 170-point qualifiers to the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1).
J. Keeler Johnson handicaps the Santa Anita Derby (G1) and Ashland Stakes (G1).
If there are no scratches in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby (G1) April 8, the 13-horse field entering the gate will be the largest for the West Coast's top Triple Crown prep race since 1981.
In an instant following the San Felipe Stakes (G2), Iliad went from a fringe Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) contender in the shadow of Mastery to the likely favorite in the April 8 Santa Anita Derby (G1).
With undefeated Mastery sidelined after an injury following the San Felipe Stakes (G2), Bob Baffert will go to his bench in quest of victory in the $1 million Santa Anita Derby (G1) April 8.
Peacock Racing Stables' multiple graded stakes winner Gunnevera put in his final breeze March 25 for the $1 million Xpressbet.com Florida Derby (G1) April 1 at Gulfstream Park, leading a coast-to-coast slate of sophomore works.
The $500,000 Longines Gran Premio Latino Americano (G1), South America's richest race, has drawn of a field of 16. The 1 1/2-mile turf race will be run for the first time at the Valparaiso Sporting Club in Vina del Mar, Chile.
J J Brevan Stable's Chance of Luck dug in late to win the $100,000 Inaugural Stakes Dec. 3 at Tampa Bay Downs and become the first black-type stakes winner for sire Skipshot.
Sophomore Accelerate is being asked to make a major step forward in the Las Vegas Breeders' Cup Dirt Mile (gr. I).
Grade I winner Sidney's Candy, who has stood at WinStar Farm since 2012, will take up permanent residence at Ricardo Benedicto's Haras La Pasion in Argentina where he will stand during the Southern Hemisphere breeding season.
Colts by leading sire Tapit and his son Tapizar, third on this year’s first-crop sire list, are among the top horses to watch when the three-day Fasig-Tipton October sale launches Oct. 24.
Hronis Racing's Accelerate took the long way around the racetrack and had to wait out a lengthy inquiry, but was able to survive both to win his graded stakes debut Sept. 24 in the $200,000 Los Alamitos Derby (gr. II).
A well-timed ride from Luis Contreras propelled Breaking Lucky to his first graded stakes win in the $150,000 Seagram Cup (Can-III) Aug. 1 at Woodbine.
"When you have a horse like Mor Spirit and Cupid that could be competitive, there's a little hope, a little dream there," the trainer said. "But you still have to get there, just get in that gate."
The only horse in the $1 millon Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) field to have win over a wet track sure looked like he loved the slop April 9.
In addition, it will also air the Equine Forum, its weekly talk show, on Saturday and provide live coverage of the Commonwealth, Shakertown, and Madison from Keeneland in its three-hour broadcast.
J. Keeler Johnson handicaps the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) at Santa Anita Park. read blog
NBCSN will present an April 9 telecast of the key classic preps with coverage of the Wood Memorial Stakes (gr. I) from Aqueduct, the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (gr. I) from Keeneland, and the Santa Anita Derby (gr. I).
This week we take a closer look at Danzing Candy, winner of the $400,000 San Felipe Stakes on March 12 at Santa Anita Park.
Exaggerator is among the seven 3-year-olds listed as probable for the April 9 Santa Anita Derby (gr. I), and trainer Keith Desormeaux believes the Curlin colt can improve on his third-place finish last time out.
Danzing Candy, in the first timed workout since his breakout score in the March 12 San Felipe Stakes (gr. II), went five furlongs in :58 3/5 March 26 at Santa Anita Park.
Michael Lund Peterson's Mor Spirit worked four furlongs March 24 in :47 4/5 at Santa Anita Park, and earned the "breezing" tag in preparation for the $1 million Santa Anita Derby (gr. I) April 9.
Scratched from what would have been his stakes debut in the Lecomte Stakes (gr. III) Jan. 16, Dede McGehee's Dolphus took a step forward Jan. 31 at Fair Grounds Race Course & Slots.
|Horse||Trainer||Breeder / Owner|
|Alphie's Bet||Alexis Barba||
|Cardiff Giant||Jorge Periban||
|Lookin At Lucky||Bob Baffert||
|Posse Power||Frank Lucarelli||
|Setsuko||Richard E. Mandella||
|Sidney's Candy||Todd A. Pletcher||
|Thomas Baines||Doug F. O'Neill||
|Who's Up||Brian J. Koriner||
More Race Results
- At this Track
Upcoming Stakes Entries
|TRAO Classic Sprint S.||WRD|
|Will Rogers H.||WRD|
|Affirmed Success S.||BEL|
|Bewitch S. (G3T)||KEE|
|Golden Circle S.||PRM|