Handicapping

Tips and picks for how to bet on Thorougbred horse racing

  • Wise Dan returns in Ben Ali

    Wise Dan concluded 2011 in smashing fashion, posting big wins in the Grade 2 Fayette Stakes and Grade 1 Clark Handicap, and the Charles Lopresti-trained gelding will look to make it three straight when opening his five-year-old season in Sunday's Grade 3, $150,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/benali12">Ben Ali Stakes </a>at Keeneland. The versatile chestnut tops a field of seven in the 1 1/8-mile test over the Polytrack.

  • Princess Arabella retired with injury

    Peachtree Stable's undefeated Princess Arabella, who would have been a major contender in the Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, has been retired due to injury. Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert revealed the news on HRTV Thursday.

  • Secret Circle out of Derby

    Grade 2 Rebel Stakes winner Secret Circle is out of the Kentucky Derby with a sesamoid injury, according to the <i>Blood-Horse</i>. The Bob Baffert pupil was most recently a distant runner-up to stablemate Bodemeister in last Saturday's Grade 1 Arkansas Derby.

  • Former steward, racing official Hamilton dies at 76

    Richard L. Hamilton, a former steward and longtime racing official for the New York Racing Association (NYRA), died Wednesday night at St. Peter's Hospital in Albany, New York after suffering a heart attack. He was 76 years old.

  • Churchill Downs launches 2012 Derby mobile app

    Churchill Downs has launched an enhanced free Kentucky Derby 138 mobile application for select smartphones and tablets that run the iPhone and Android operating systems.

  • Jones trio of Derby weekend runners head to the track

    The Larry Jones-trained trio of Havre de Grace, Mark Valeski and Believe You Can arrived at Barn 35 at Churchill Downs in good order at 5 p.m. (EST) Tuesday night and all three visited the track Wednesday morning to gallop a mile.

  • Lukas still hoping Optimizer makes Derby field

    Bluegrass Hall LLC's homebred Optimizer, most recently ninth in the Grade 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park, is still being pointed to the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 5, according to trainer D. Wayne Lukas.

  • Castaway needs Lexington win to make Derby field

    While trainer Bob Baffert has yet to fully commit Castaway to the Kentucky Derby on May 5, the white-haired conditioner has given every indication the Street Sense colt will wheel back off the two-week break if he captures Saturday's 31st running of the Grade 3, $200,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/lexingtonstakes12.html"> Lexington Stakes</a> at Keeneland.

  • Aqueduct Notebook

    <i><b><font face="Arial" size="4">AQUEDUCT NOTEBOOK </font> </b></i>

  • Kentucky Derby Report

    <i><b><font face="Arial" size="4">KENTUCKY DERBY REPORT</font></b></i>

  • St. John's River prepares for La Troienne return

    Dede McGehee's St. John's River, who was narrowly defeated by Plum Pretty in last year's Grade 1 Kentucky Oaks, is being pointed to a return to the races after an eighth-month layoff in the Grade 2, $300,000 La Troienne, which is to be run on the Kentucky Oaks Day undercard on May 4.

  • Arena Elvira enters Sixty Sails on long winning streak

    Already blessed with the presence of champion Royal Delta in his barn, Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott also has another nice older mare in Arena Elvria, who will seek her sixth consecutive victory Saturday in the Grade 3, $200,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/sixtysails12">Sixty Sails Handicap</a> at Hawthorne.

  • Baffert duo face The Lumber Guy in Jerome

    After landing a one-two punch in last week's Grade 1 Arkansas Derby with Bodemeister and Secret Circle, Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert will attempt to do the same in Saturday's Grade 2, $200,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/jerome12">Jerome</a> at Aqueduct with California shippers Stirred Up and Brigand. The one-mile Jerome, which will be run for the 142nd time, is the final graded stakes of the Aqueduct spring meet as racing in New York shifts to Belmont Park next weekend.

  • Fantasy stable game to feature top British races

    QIPCO British Champions Series, the <i>Daily Telegraph</i> and <i>Racing Post</i> have launched a brand new, free-to-enter fantasy game, with players having the opportunity to score points across all 35 races in the 2012 Series.

  • Nicholson stepping down as Keeneland president

    Keeneland President and CEO Nick Nicholson on Wednesday announced that effective September 1, he will retire from Keeneland Association after nearly 13 years at the helm. Bill Thomason, currently Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, has been selected by the Keeneland Trustees as successor to Nicholson.

  • Creative Cause works with blinkers

    Creative Cause, recording his first workout since a nose second in the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby April 7, completed five furlongs in 1:01 1/5 over the Cushion Track at Hollywood Park on Tuesday. It was the 16th fastest of 37 works at the distance.

  • Bodemeister feeling good after big win

    The top-two finishers in last Saturday's Grade 1, $1 million Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park arrived at Churchill Downs in good order Monday afternoon to continue their preparations for the 138th running of the $2 million Kentucky Derby, which is to be run beneath the Twin Spires on May 5.

  • Pachattack faces seven in Doubledogdare

    Pachattack, a leading mare on synthetic surfaces in North America the past couple of seasons, get back to work Friday at Keeneland in the Grade 3, $100,000 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/doubledogdare12">Doubledogdare</a> over 1 1/16 miles. The race will mark her first start for the Niarchos family's Flaxman Holdings, which purchased the six-year-old for $1.2 million at the Fasig-Tipton November Sale.

  • THS: Florida Derby

    Jason and Tom handicap the Florida Derby and Louisiana Derby.

  • Dubai Interview: Patrick Shaw (Rocket Man)

    Simon Burgess talks with Patrick Shaw, trainer of Rocket Man, the 2011 Dubai Golden Shaheen winner, who returns to defend his title in 2012. Sponsored by AmWest

  • Mission Impazible won the New Orleans Handicap in 2011.

    Big Names Clash in New Orleans Handicap

    The $1 million Louisiana Derby (gr. II) is the headliner on Fair Grounds' April 1 program, but the biggest names and most talented horses may be running on the undercard in the $400,000 New Orleans Handicap (gr. II).

  • Royal Delta in Dubai.

    Mott Says Royal Delta is Feeling Sassy

    With her bid for history in the Dubai World Cup (UAE-gr. I) only four days away, Royal Delta is feeling, as trainer Bill Mott put it with a delighted grin, 'sassy.'

  • Went the Day goes very Well in Spiral

    Providing a strong sense of deja vu, Team Valor International's Went the Day Well booked his ticket to the Kentucky Derby with a convincing victory in Saturday's Grade 3, $500,000 Viver Racing Spiral Stakes

  • Triple Crown late nomination deadline looming

    Thoroughbred owners and trainers who wish to make their late-blooming three-year-olds eligible to compete in the 2012 Triple Crown series of classic American races have until Saturday to add their horses to the roster of late nominations to the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes.

  • Game On Dude

    American Horses Land Safely in Dubai

    America's contenders for the $27 million Dubai World Cup program, including champion Royal Delta and multiple grade I winner Game On Dude, have landed safely in Dubai and are in good health after the long flight from Florida.

  • Eight set for Sunland Derby

    With its lucrative $800,000 purse, the Grade 3 <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/sunlandderby12">Sunland Derby</a> is an attractive prep race for Kentucky Derby hopefuls lacking graded earnings, and three-year-olds from the barns of notable trainers Bob Baffert, Todd Pletcher and Steve Asmussen have shipped into the New Mexico track this year in search of a guaranteed berth to the Run for Roses. The 1 1/8-mile race gained notoriety in 2009 when producing Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird.

  • Purses for Oaklawn 'Cap, Count Fleet Sprint raised

    Oaklawn Park, which has already announced three purse increases this meet, is increasing the purses of the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap and Grade 3 Count Fleet Sprint Handicap by $50,000, bringing the April 14 events to $400,000 and $250,000, respectively. Additionally, the track will offer a participation bonus for the fourth consecutive year on all non-stakes races that attract more than eight wagering interests for the final three weeks of the season (March 29 ? April 14).

  • Kentucky Derby Report

    <i><b><font face="Arial" size="4">KENTUCKY DERBY REPORT</font></b></i>

  • Pletcher looking for third win in Spiral

    Trainer Todd Pletcher, who won the Spiral Stakes in 2001 with Balto Star and in 2005 with Flower Alley when it was a Grade 2, will be looking for his third win in the now Grade 3 race when he sends out the uncoupled duo of Heavy Breathing and Holiday Promise on Saturday at Turfway Park.

  • Gemologist confirmed for Wood Memorial

    WinStar Farm's undefeated Gemologist is headed to Aqueduct for next month's Grade 1, $1 million Wood Memorial, trainer Todd Pletcher confirmed by phone Wednesday morning.

  • Arlington announces overnight stakes

    A schedule of 11 overnight stakes races worth an aggregate $725,000 for the 2012 meet was announced Wednesday by Arlington Park Director of Racing and Racing Secretary Chris Polzin.

  • Mark Valeski, Mr. Bowling work for Louisiana Derby

    Mark Valeski, runner-up in last month's Grade 2 Risen Star Stakes, made a case for favoritism in the Grade 2, $1 million Louisiana Derby on April 1, breezing an impressive five furlongs over the fast main track at Fair Grounds on Tuesday. He completed the move in :59 2/5 under regular rider Rosie Napravnik, the fastest of 11 works at the distance by a full second.

  • Louisiana Derby in mix for Alpha

    South Florida-based Alpha, easy winner of the Grade 3 Withers at Aqueduct on February 4, is now considered probable for the Grade 2, $1 million Louisiana Derby on April 1, trainer Kiaran McLaughlin confirmed Tuesday.

  • Santa Anita Notebook

    <i><b><font face="Arial" size="4">SANTA ANITA NOTEBOOK</font></b></i>

  • Kentucky Derby DreamBet contest returns

    For the third consecutive year, Churchill Downs and NBC have partnered to give one person the chance to place a life-changing $100,000 win bet in the Kentucky Derby on May 5.

  • Gemologist to Wood; Bode could go to Arkansas

    Undefeated Grade 2 hero Gemologist will use the Grade 1 Wood Memorial at Aqueduct on April 7 as his final prep for the Kentucky Derby, owner WinStar Farm confirmed via Twitter on Monday.

  • Probable fields for Dubai World Cup night released

    Multiple Grade 1 hero Game on Dude and champion filly Royal Delta are among 14 horses projected to compete in the Group 1, $10 million Dubai World Cup on March 31, according to the <a target="_blank" href="http://www.brisnet.com/edgeped/2012dubaiprojectedfields.pdf"> list of probable competitors</a> released Sunday by the Dubai Racing Club.