As we take a look back at the Robert B. Lewis, and on to the 2014 Kentucky Derby, I feel there is a lot to be excited about moving forward. I may have been a bit too optimistic leading up to the race, as some of the horses that I was high on did disappoint. But, I think there is a pair that we really need to keep our eyes on. Here are the key takeaways from the Robert B. Lewis in my humble opinion…
Candy Boy – I think we have a legit Derby contender here, folks. Every time I watch the replay of this race I like him more and more. He sat a perfect trip stalking a quick pace from the rail and then closed nicely to get up for the win. I am excited about him and I very much look forward to seeing his next race which I hear will be in the Santa Anita Derby.
Chitu – I thought the runner up ran a very nice race and that he is one to keep our eyes on in the future. He was 3-4 wide into the first turn and then went up to press a quick pace. He put away the pace setter at the top of the stretch and then fended off his stable mate, but was eventually caught late by the winner. All in all I thought it was a fine first try over a route of ground and I look forward to his next start. He definitely has a right to improve.
Midnight Hawk – I was not too high on him going into this, and I am sure not high on him coming out of this. He got a perfect trip while pressing the pace in the clear and had no kick at all in the lane. I was not impressed and I could not find an excuse for him either. I think I will be passing on him in the future as the distances increase.
Cool Samurai – In his stakes debut this guy showed nothing. He raced at the back of the pack and had no rally. Maybe my hopes were a bit too high, too soon on him. I do not have a lot of confidence in him moving forward.
Diamond Bachelor – I had high expectations for this guy, but it just wasn’t meant to be. He set the pace through quick fractions while being pressed from the runner up. He was overtaken at the top of the stretch and that was all she wrote. I did not want to see him on the lead and I knew he was in trouble from the start. It looks like he is heading back to the green stuff.
I was excited going into this race, and I am even more excited thinking about the future. I think Candy Boy is a legit Derby contender and I think Chitu has potential as well. I think we found out a lot about Midnight Hawk, and in my opinion, I don’t think I will be backing him in the future on the Derby Trail. In my opinion, I think California may have a lot to say when it comes time to decide who will wear the roses on that first Saturday in May.