The Road to the Kentucky Derby - Points Update
Las Vegas, NV - The Road to the Kentucky Derby is in full swing and this past weekend welcomed two new contenders into the mix - Victories by Overanalyze in the Remsen at Aqueduct and Uncaptured in the Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs Nov. 24 propelled the 2-year-olds into the numbers four and five positions, respectively, in the standings. The new points system replaces the old system in which contenders would gain berths into the May Classic on the basis of purse earned in graded stakes action.
There is one more stakes race - the $750,000 Grade 1 CashCall Futurity at Betfair Hollywood Park -remaining in 2012 on the "Road to the Kentucky Derby." There have now been four qualifying stakes in the 14-race "Kentucky Derby Prep Season" portion of the Derby Trail for which points are awarded on a 10-4-2-1 basis for the first- through fourth-place finishers, respectively. The final race in the prep season will be the Feb. 18 Southwest Stakes (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park.
The "Kentucky Derby Championship Series," in which the points increase to 50-20-10-5, begins Feb. 23 with the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream.
Let's take a look at the present Standings and the early names to watch on the way to May 4, 2013.
Todd Pletcher's Shanghai Bobby currently leads the Kentucky Derby point's race with 20 - he looks like the horse to beat although it is very early in the qualification process. Doug O'Neill's Goldencents is currently second in the standings with 14 while six colts are tied with 10 points apiece. Mike Maker's Joha, Todd Pletcher's Overanalyze, Mark Casse's Uncaptured, Bob Baffert's Power Broker, Irish bred Steeler and Nick Gonzalez trained River Seven are all in that group from #3-#8
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In ninth place in the standings is Tesseron, a Josie Carroll trained colt with five points while there is another log jam from tenth to seventeenth place. Included in this cluster is Kelly Breen's Bern Identity, Doug O'Neill's He's Had Enough and Know More, John Sadler's Capo Bastone, Mark Casse's Dynamic Sky, Artigiano, Chad Brown colt Normandy Invasion and Ken McPeek trained Frac Daddy all have four points early in the qualification process.
Mylute, Ken McPeek trained Java's War, Mark Casse's Indiano Jones, Irish colt Al Waab, Todd Pletcher pupil Delhomme and Dale Romans trained Dewey Square all have two points and are tied for nineteenth. This group of colts would be on the outside looking in if the Derby were run today.
These standings are fluid - they will change frequently. Stay tuned to OffTrackBetting.com for previews to all of the qualification races and updated standings on the way to the Run for the Roses May 4.