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Will the form of the January 16 San Rafael S. (G3) hold up better than the January 18 Smarty Jones S.? Will Hopeful S. (G1) winner DUBLIN (Afleet Alex) run his way back into the Kentucky Derby (G1) picture over a track his sire relished? Those are just a couple of the questions that will be answered following Monday's $250,000 Southwest S. (G3) at Oaklawn Park, a one-mile test has attracted a field of 10 three-year-olds including the top three from the San Rafael, the top four from the course-and-distance Smarty Jones, and Dublin, who makes his seasonal debut for D. Wayne Lukas.
There were few surprises on a brisk opening day of betting in Pool 1 of Churchill Downs’ 2010 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”) as 2-year-old champion Lookin At Lucky ended the day as the favored individual contender for the May 1 Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum Brands (Grade I), but the “all others” wagering interest was a heavy overall favorite.
Monday's $150,000 San Vicente S. (G2) at Santa Anita marks the third time that TINY WOODS (Roman Ruler) and SIDNEY'S CANDY (Candy Ride [Arg]) have squared off against each other. Although Tiny Woods has won both of their previous meetings, Sidney's Candy figures to attract plenty of support as he seeks to turn the tables.
In their mutual debut on July 25 at Del Mar, Tiny Woods led throughout and just held on from Sidney's Candy by a head. The two then went their separate ways.
Jill Byrne analyzes the upcoming Kentucky Derby prep races
British trainer Jeremy Noseda is mapping out plans for the royally-bred AWESOME ACT (Awesome Again), who was last seen flying home for fourth in the November 7 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf (G2). According to a statement posted Thursday on Noseda's website, Awesome Act will ship from his Newmarket headquarters to New York for the March 6 Gotham S. (G3) at Aqueduct.
Godolphin's undefeated MENDIP (Harlan's Holiday), a Triple Crown nominee, scored a professional victory in his three-year-old debut in Dubai on Thursday.
The Saeed bin Suroor pupil faced 13 rivals in the 1ST race, an about seven-furlong conditions event on the synthetic Tapeta surface at Meydan Racecourse. Four of them were his stablemates, including fellow Triple Crown nominees Cappiwino (Soto) and Fareej (Kingmambo).
The 2010 “Road to the Roses” Kentucky Derby Fantasy Challenge, a free online contest that allows racing
fans to manage a stable of Kentucky Derby contenders during the three-month buildup to the historic Kentucky
Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I), is now open for registration. Located at www.RoadToTheRoses.com,
the game’s grand prize winner will receive a VIP trip for two to the 137th running of the Kentucky Derby in 2011.
“Road to the Roses” players earn points based on how well their fantasy stable performs in a
Saturday's $225,000 Sam F. Davis (G3) features a match-up between local star UPTOWNCHARLYBROWN (Limehouse) and Grade 3 winner RULE (Roman Ruler) at Tampa Bay Downs. A total of seven three-year-olds are entered for the 1 1/16-mile event, which serves as a prep for the Tampa Bay Derby (G3) on March 13.
AMERICAN LION (Tiznow) will make his two-turn debut Saturday while taking on four rivals in the $150,000 Robert B. Lewis S. (G2) at Santa Anita. The 1 1/16-mile event, rescheduled from last Saturday's card that was lost when the Pro-Ride failed to drain properly after heavy rain, is a major prep for the $750,000 Santa Anita Derby (G1) on April 3.
Champion 2-year-old Lookin At Lucky is the favored individual horse, but Churchill Downs oddsmaker Mike Battaglia is confident that the mutuel field, or ‘all others’, will again be the favored wagering interest in the opening pool of the 2010 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”) that opens its three-day run on Friday, Feb. 12.