- Road to the Kentucky Derby
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Jill Byrne analyzes the upcoming Derby prep races
AWESOME ACT (Awesome Again) breezed six furlongs in 1:14 over the fast Belmont Park training track Thursday morning in his first serious move since posting a 1 1/4-length score in the Gotham S. (G3) on March 6. The move was likely his final serious timed work before an expected start in the $750,000 Wood Memorial (G1) at Aqueduct on April 3.
A front-running winner of the San Rafael S. (G3) and Southwest S. (G3), CONVEYANCE (Indian Charlie) will make his final Kentucky Derby (G1) prep against eight rivals in Sunday's $800,000 Sunland Derby (G3).
Jill Byrne talks about what it takes to get a horse from the farm to the track
Eskendereya, Lookin At Lucky Favored in Final March 26-28 Pool of Churchill Downs 2010 Kentucky Derby Future Wager
Zayat Racing Stable’s Eskendereya, a dazzling 8 ½-length winner of the Fountain of Youth (Grade II) at Gulfstream Park, and Karl Watson, Mike Pegram and Paul Weitman’s Lookin At Lucky, America’s reigning 2-year-old champion and winner of Oaklawn Park’s Rebel (GIII) in his 2010 debut, loom as the likely favorites heading into the third and final three-day pool of Churchill Downs’ 2010 Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”).
Like every prolific sporting championship, the Kentucky Derby® is the culmination of months – even years – of preparation, determination and the heart-felt desire to win America’s greatest race for horses. For many, the chance to compete in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and not making the cut means saying goodbye to a dream.
In late March the “madness” sets in for college basketball fans, and that is certainly true in Kentucky. But the Bluegrass is also the horse capital of the world and the hub of Derby Nation fans.
“It (horse racing) is unlike other sports… Or, to put it in basketball terms, a 16 seed can beat the No. 1 seed,” says Kevin Woodward of Louisville, Ky., when explaining why he is a Derby fan. “For two minutes, from the infield to Millionaires Row, you see each person screaming for a horse.”
Godolphin's American Triple Crown nominee MENDIP (Harlan's Holiday), who romped in the March 4 Al Bastakiya at Meydan, will try to take another step forward in Saturday's $2 million U.A.E. Derby (UAE-G2) at the same Dubai track. To do so, the Saeed bin Suroor trainee must overcome South African champion MUSIR (Redoute's Choice), a four-year-old by Northern Hemisphere reckoning.