• Far From Over is injured and off the Kentucky Derby trail, according to owner, James Covello.Posted 18 hours ago
  • Materiality turns away the challenge of Upstart to win the Florida Derby.Posted 3 days ago
  • International Star reels in Stanford late to win the Louisiana Derby.Posted 3 days ago
  • I'm A Chatterbox sweeps the 3yo filly stakes at Fair Grounds with today's win in the Oaks.Posted 3 days ago
  • I'm A Chatterbox sweeps the 3yo filly stakes at Fair Grounds with today's win in the Oaks.Posted 3 days ago
  • Pants On Fire guts out a win in the Sir Shackleton.Posted 3 days ago
  • War Correspondent rolls late to win the Appleton.Posted 3 days ago
  • Prince Bishop wins the world's richest race; California Chrome 2nd.Posted 3 days ago
  • Dolniya dominates the boys in the Dubai Sheema ClassicPosted 3 days ago
  • Solow defeats The Grey Gatsby in the $6,000,000 Dubai TurfPosted 3 days ago

HRN Original Blog:
Toasting with Andrew Champagne


Older Comments...

I hope the field gets better as the week goes on. It's looking pretty weak right now and Dortmund should jog his way to another victory.
  • Show All 3 Comments
  • vodkak · Dortmund will probably go off about 1 to 5. So much for being a competitive race; a paid workout. · 1 day ago
  • Scrap via Disqus · You might wanna take good look at cross the line, had a rough trip last out,seems to enjoy running distance, and might take to the dirt !? Can't argue with the connections!!! · 1 hour ago
Hard to gauge him since he's faced absolutely no other legit Derby potential horse... Still leaning Dortmund there, but his Spiral win was impressive in the sense he came out of gate 12 and put that field of nobodies away pretty well.
Anyone using times to rate this horse didn't watch the race. He was basically pulled up to a gallop at the quarter pole. What needed to Be seen is the extra gear he had and the explosion of foot once he got to the leader. That what you plant to see from a derby prep. A stalker with an extra gear. Easily the best performance this yr with out being tested. This is a derby horse and if your leaving him off then I'm glad. I'll take the money and laugh to the bank
  • Lorelord via Disqus · Just give burn what you want to wager on him, ask someone to sock you in the junk and you'll have experienced exactly what you'll feel on Derby Day 2:05 seconds after they start. · 2 hours ago
  • Lorelord via Disqus · Also, don't be deceived, there was no explosion or extra gear, those other horses were clearly backing up and spitting the bit while he was the only one finishing at all... Yes there was some finish there, but without another legit animal in the race it's tough to gauge what you're seeing... · 2 hours ago
Got Mubtaahij at 125-1(only $25, unfortunately) three weeks ago...very excited after his UAE Derby performance....if he can translate that turn of foot to the Churchill surface, we might have have a winner
  • Lorelord via Disqus · Well you're getting great odds! That's the good news. The bad news is if the UAE performance excited you, you didn't see who he ran against... he basically faced a crew of horses that should of been packing a lunch and flashlights for that trip... · 2 hours ago
@hrn-5817b9ce0166e6e9a3bbf012af91e781:disqus I honestly could care less about the trip he got. I rather see him get a dream trip and visually see him throttle away from horses then to see him run like most of this years crop and win a race by about a length with little or no acceleration.
  • Lorelord via Disqus · Most of this years crop is running against other formidable competitors (who aren't backing up) so it's tougher to throttle away... · 2 hours ago
For those of you claiming track time difference look no further than Materiality. 1.52 and change, finished up in 13 4/5. Say he runs 14 in the Derby that puts him at 2.06.....this same horse just ran the best Beyer (110) for any 3 year old heading to Kentucky. I'm not even a big Beyer or Materiality fan, but lets face it - final time means next to nothing. Show me who they beat, and how they do it. Final time is little more than a statistic for Track Variant.
  • Lorelord via Disqus · I don't disagree, but when you show me who they beat (and it was nobody for this guy), then I start looking at splits & times to gauge what exactly we're working with since there are no other parameters to gauge. · 2 hours ago
Big Beast is gonna Pounce!
Check out race 4 at keeneland. Allowance featuring big blue kitten, mr speaker, hyper, majestic harbor, guys reward, and war dancer.
I'll agree with firing line but not Dortmund I'll take the use derby winner and firing line as my two picks
Frustrating because he would have had second very easily and made the race closer had he changed leads. Around the turn he was actually pretty close to AP and then struggled to change leads and lost a ton of ground. Unfortunately a trainer can't get a horse to change leads, so one can only hope the experience helps.
  • MarkKennedy · This whole Curlin baby thing is frustrating. We should have had 3 colts to make the ky derby field and they all have screwed around and now we will be lucky if one makes the gate. Depressing · 8 hours ago
OFF tracks, as shown by 25 years of study, have shown to make very little difference in the horses that do well at CD at 10f.
  • amino998 · Does this conclusion mean your pre-race evaluation {HANDICAPPING} of The Derby is unchanged by track condition? That track in 2013 only increased my confidence in Orb and moved Revolutionary up to #2 in the hierarchy :) · 8 hours ago
They dicked around and now have 22 points sitting 17 with Far From Over out Don't think this ur 22 is going to make the gate
From what I see there are two horses in this race (KD) Dortmund and Firing Line. It should be a classic duel akin tho War Admiral vs. Seabiscut, or the Seattle Slew Affirmed duels. Dortmund has awesome features and spectacular class. Firing Line's a step behind, but he has Gary Stevens in the saddle. It may be the greatest Kentucky Derby ever. I a record breaking pace... and at the finish line the best three year old in a decade.
  • Montezuma1 via Disqus · The Affirmed/Alydar comparison came to mind regarding Dortmund and Firing Line just yesterday for me. If Dortmund get2 4-10 PP I think the Derby is automatically his. I'd hat to see him past PP 12. · 9 hours ago
I took a note on him when he won last year said How good is he???? won under wraps he must have had some problems as he regressed but in his return last start he is back i don't know about the conditions but he is back
Speed figures were never designed to make the top figure horse a guaranteed winner. The greatest attribute they possess is the ability to accurately assess the past performances of horses from completely disparate courses (racetracks with wildly varying par times), giving them order and meaning. A 1:09 @ Delaware is not the same as a 1:09 @ Saratoga. Prior to speed figures this was the bane of handicappers, trying to figure out how to assess horse A whose previous races are at a venue with which the horseplayer is wholly unfamiliar. These were in the days when simulcasting was not what it is today. Speed figures enabled horseplayers to accurately gauge the performance of mysterious newcomers.
  • Show All 3 Comments
  • CauseForConcern · I believe the UAE Derby horse I went with, might've been Powis Castle? I have since jumped off the UAE bandwagon. I guess my doubts begin with the Sheikh, or Sheikhs. They built their own track; they put down synthetic, then took it up; they provide the purse money, and then they win, so, they pay themselves. Then they're awarded Graded status, and awarded an automatic berth in the Derby. How come they don't bring their horses over to this country prior to the Derby, to try and acclimate, for a possible chance of maturing into the Derby? I heard they once tried to bring bluegrass to the desert, and plant it, to try and replicate the breeding accommodations in Kentucky. Yet, they couldn't keep it growing, due to the intense heat. There will probably be a time, when they eventually win the Derby. And, I'll most likely be the one, to say, "Everybody said that he was the obvious choice. I just couldn't read between the lines". Good luck. · 11 hours ago
  • travel_vic · Oh My........good 1980's comment · 9 hours ago
This horse has blown up EVERY horse racing board and website I visit. I love it, haha.
won't kobe's back be a winning @ a mile on dirt
Materiality is a half to my miss Sophia who ran second in the oaks last year for none other than Todd pletcher
Unfortunately, Far from Over just broke a rear leg. That I think will make Dortmund a shoe in for the derby. Let see how he does 04/04 at Santa Anita
Doubt there will be much value but Daredevil has run well in the mud. Weather on Friday into Saturday morning calls for rain at the Big A...

Meet Andrew Champagne


A native of upstate New York and a graduate of Ithaca College, Andrew Champagne fell in love with horse racing at a very early age on summer trips to Saratoga. His turf writing credits include time spent as a sportswriter, weekly columnist, and handicapper at The Saratogian, a summer working for The Saratoga Special, and "field research" at OTB facilities in Saratoga Springs and his hometown of Kingston. He also spent two years in the athletic communications office at Siena College, and interned with NBC Olympics at the 2010 Winter Games in Vancouver.

Andrew moved to Pasadena, Calif., in October of 2013, and now serves as an Associate Producer in HRTV's Digital Media department and Horse Racing Nation's Southern California writer. Follow him on Twitter at @AndrewChampagne, and email him at andrewdchampagne@gmail.com.

Best of the Blogs

Top Stories