Super Saver's progeny excelled early at shorter distances but have tailed off in routes. Super Saver himself won route stakes races at 2. They seem only to like dirt as well. On the contrary Lookin At Lucky's progeny have won routes, on multiple surfaces, including stakes races. I'd expect Super Saver's progeny to be distance challenged more so than 'Lucky, since Lucky is at least a sire side descendant of Mr. Prospector via Smart Strike. Lucky's kids win first time out more than Super Saver's and have won more routes so far. On a side note I always wondered what would have happened had Lucky drawn better in the 2010 Derby. He's was still running late but there was no beating Bo-rail (and his buzzer? lol) that day.
Close Hatches had an interesting year. She drew the rail 3 times this year (which is typically golden for a pace horse) and won all 3 races She caught slop in the Personal Ensign and romped. In her last 2 races no slop and no rail, and no ITM finish in either. Maybe an anomaly but interesting nonetheless.
6 of the last 10 came from off the pace: Orb, I'll Have Another, Animal Kingdom, Mine That Bird, Street Sense, and Giacomo.
It would be epic if Honor Code ran as well. I know he's supposed to be on the shelf until next year but he's healthy and lightly raced. Shared Belief vs. Honor Code (and Chitu) would be one of the best races of the year and in December. December is normally the slowest month of the horse racing year.
If my memory serves me correctly 4 of the last 5 dirt races at AQU on Remsen day were won in wire to wire fashion. The 5th race would have been wire to wire had Rosario not left the rail, but I digress. The Remsen was basically a conveyor belt, so we'll have to see how this horse fares without a speed bias. Mineshaft has already made some waves on the Triple Crown as his son Nehro ran 2nd in the Derby in 2011 so it's not out of the question that a son of A.P. Indy could impart 10 furlong stamina on the dam side. Chad's due for a grade 1 dirt breakthrough.
I'm not a speed figure guy but the final time of a race is not what determines the speed figure, i.e. a horse in an allowance race can get loose on the lead and run really fast early but crawl home. The final time would be good but the splits and pace scenario tell a different story. Or on a deep track like Calder or Keenland you can't really run a fast time.In the race Saturday, Chrome actually ran slow fraction wise and final time wise for a turf race and the level of competition was low for a grade 1 race. He should have gotten a lower speed figure, whoever the figure maker is.
I'm not really a speed figure guy (although I understand the math/logic) and I'm not a California Chrome hater but a 95 BSF is about right. Against the clock the race was very average and there was only 1 other horse that in the field that had even competed at the Grade 1 level. You need either a fast time (or fast close) or a high level of competition to get a high speed figure from any figure maker. The "classiest" horse in the race, Lexie Lou, has only a grade 3 win to her credit. This was a nice win by California Chrome but not a tour de force. It reminds me of Big Brown winning the Monmouth Stakes on turf. It was a good not great grace against a grade 2 field at best.
I'll give the truth or else another try on at least a good track and a better ride. Only horse in the field to finish ITM in 2 graded stakes races, albeit well beaten, but most in this field are coming out of maiden races. Of those coming out of maiden races, Frosted looks like best but drew the poorest. A couple of horses should scratch so maybe the post won't be as bad.
IMO a lot of the recent data you have on the Breeders' Cup juvenile is not really usable for various reasons. First off, The BCJ was contested on a synthetic surface in 2008 and 2009, which had to effect which trainers decided to send their horses to the race. In 2012 and 2013, juveniles couldn't use lasix, which again, effects who actually ran in those races. That leaves 2010 and 2011. Uncle Mo was more than dominant in the fall of 2011, which probably scared off some competition, but as we know now the best horses of that generation either hadn't run on dirt yet or hadn't even made it to the race track yet. I think this year's results will be similar to 2011, where many of the horses that ran in the BJC came back to have great 3 year old seasons. In the 2011 BJC you had the Belmont, Travers, and Pacific Classic winners. Wow. This year, Texas Red will be on the LA path to the Derby, Carpe Diem probably on the Florida, and Upstart in NY. It should be an interesting year.
Todd's record in the Derby is a little misleading because it's not like he's taking the morning line favorite to the race every year and finishing off the board. Even when he won in 2010 Super Saver was still near 10-1.The Derby is hard to win because you need more than just a good horse. You need a good trip too. In a field or 8 -12 a good horse can overcome a bad trip. In a field of 19 or 20 a good horse can be done when the gates open.
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