- Well, Highland Cat is, like Sunriver, on the outside looking in to the sixth at Belmont on Friday; stuck on the also eligible list, damn! He’s the only one, so he’ll need a scratch to get in. Meanwhile, Castle Village is a-blazing! Introspect, who hadn’t won a race since gas was under $2 a gallon, took the 3rd there on Opening Day today at 6-1, nosing out Dutrow’s Dark Cheetah, and leaving last year's one-time Derby hopeful Galloping Grocer in the dust. Introspect is in the picture that accompanies the Barron's article; all signs are pointing to a WIN for Highland Cat! He's gotta get in!
- Ray Kerrison of the NY Post takes a look at past Derby winners, and how they finished up in their final Derby preps.
Giacomo, the 50-1 winner last year, ran his three-eighths prep in 37.48. Smarty Jones did it in 37.7, Funny Cide in 37.41, War Emblem 36.4, Monarchos in 37.1, etc.For one thing, he’s wrong about Bob and John. That was the final fractions of the race, but Bob and John did break the 40 second mark. OK, still nothing to write home about, but I’m going to excuse it due to the track conditions; I’ll discuss this more when I do my final picks. Kerrison also points out that Jazil finished the Wood in 36 4/5, but neglects to mention that he hardly ran at all the first three-quarters. I’ll get the exact numbers when the Derby is accessible on Formulator.
This handicapping concept could have enormous repercussions on Saturday for this reason - two of the hottest betting prospects in the Derby came home like snails in their preps.
They are - hold your breath - Lawyer Ron and Bob and John, both of whom took 40.2 seconds to cover the last three-eighths of their preps in the Arkansas Derby and Wood Memorial, respectively.
- Haskin reports today that:
Flashy Bull looked excellent and has a beautiful way of moving. Bluegrass Cat was a handful, wanting to get it on and fighting his rider throughout his gallop. [Bloodhorse]There’s some useful information for you! Do you like them now?
- Brass Hat’s disqualification from second place in the Dubai World Cup for a drug violation cost the owners $1.2 million; but according to the Thoroughbred Times, the money goes to winner Electrocutionist, and not to the now-official runner-up Wilko. Can’t say I understand that. And Bill Johnson, the attorney for Brass Hat’s trainer Buff Bradley, doesn’t understand the ruling.
Johnson said Bradley followed a withdrawal guideline that he received from Dubai racing officials of administering the medication at least 23 days before the race.Bradley and Johnson will, obviously, appeal.
"Buff administered it 28 days before the race to be sure that he'd comply with the [guideline]," Johnson said. "When it showed up in the horse after the race, the stewards said 'Oh, well, we're aware of that document and we know it's put out, but it's not a part of our official regulations.'
"I said 'Well, why in the hell do you put it out and put on there that it's okay to administer the drug if you all are not going to allow it?' They did not have an answer." [Thoroughbred Times]