…but first, an Ahvee’s Destiny Update
Unfortunately, when our mare was checked to make sure she was still in foal, she was barren. So, she had to go back to City Zip and try again. They both had smiles on their faces. Let’s hope it takes and we get her back to Saratoga in foal by the end of June.
Now the question is to where she will return. You see, the owner of Rojan Farm has decided to retire from taking care of horses that are not her own. Therefore, we need to find a new farm. We’ve identified a few and will be visiting them next weekend.
Meanwhile, I’m told that Ahvee’s foal – that cute little filly known as Ahvee 2015, whose photos you’ve seen – is doing well. Looking forward to seeing her back in Saratoga too.
Now, to today’s Kentucky Oaks at 1 1/8 miles. It’s the fillies version of the Derby. Let me warn you that I’ve already lost the 4th race today betting on my friend’s horse who finished 4th… but at least we were screaming for her down the stretch. It was a close race.
Here are my top picks for The Oaks. Stellar Wind will be one of the favorites because she’s won 3 in a row and her last was very strong. Condo Commando, who likes to run on the lead could run away with this race if not challenged… and that might be the case. Bird at the Wire has won 3 of her last 4 and is very consistent. A big plus is that she has already won at Churchill Downs. I’m a Chatterbox has also won 3 in a row and has been improving every race. Lovely Maria has won 2 of her last 3 and looked good in her last. It would be the first win in a Grade 1 Stakes for her rider, Kerwin Clark. EskenforMoney has been finishing just behind Bird at the Wire and may offer big odds for those looking for a long shot. Do check the odds before you bet.
And now, the big one, the 141st Kentucky Derby. You may remember that a few years ago, we teamed with our Kentucky friends to bet the Super-fecta, where you must call the first 4 finishers in order. Each of our 8 participants picked a horse and spent $210 for a total of $1680. We couldn’t believe it when we won and collected over $48,000 before the governments took their cut. That was pretty exciting!
We only picked 3 out 4 next time, so we did not cash but this year, we’re trying again with these 8 horses: American Pharoah, Dortmund, Upstart, Frosted, Firing Line, Mubtaahij, Carpe Diem and El Kabeir. There is some buzz that El Kabeir might be scratched. I have recommended using Materiality if that happens but it’s up to our Kentucky friends.
This Derby is very contentious with many good horses. I would like to think that American Pharoah is so good, he could win the Triple Crown. Of course, we’ll soon see. The presumptive post-time favorite has been making it look easy… but against lesser competition than he’ll face here.
Dortmund has a perfect record, 6 for 6. He’s also shown that he’s tough (horse people call this quality, “game”). He was even passed in one race but came back to win. He will likely be the second favorite.
Upstart has the best “numbers” of any of the contenders… but he’s only won 2 of his last 3 and was disqualified from 1 of those. We’re partial to him because his sire, Flatter, is the sire of one of our 2-yr. old fillies.
Frosted had a breathing procedure and I believe a blinkers change improving the result of his lat race substantially. Materiality has been improving with every race and has great numbers but did not race as a 2-yr. old and has only run 3 races but has won all 3! He’s starting from a feared inside post, #3.
Firing Line is the horse who took the lead from Dortmund, only to let him come back and prevail. But then, he went to the Sunland Derby and won by 14 1/2 lengths when there was no Dortmund. Carpe Diem has won 4 of 5 with good numbers but starts from the #2 post which is a big disadvantage..
You see that these selections are very similar to the Kentucky Friends’ Superfecta selections. Yet, there are 4 others who can win, if they run their best race. That’s what makes this Kentucky Derby so special. Enjoy it and keep your eyes on the odds for betting.