Race of the Week 2017

HRN Original Blog:
Toasting with Andrew Champagne

CashCall Futurity Pros and Cons

Shared Belief 615 X 400 Prevue
Photo: Benoit Photos


Since my pros and cons article on the Hollywood Starlet (won by Streaming) seemed to drive some discussion, it's only fitting I continue the series with a look at the final Grade I to be run in the history of Betfair Hollywood Park: The $750,000 CashCall Futurity.

In a twist that baffles this scribe, this race, one that's drawn one of the largest fields for a 2-year-old race all year long, will offer exactly zero points in the Kentucky Derby standings. That doesn't mean there's a dearth of talent here, though; far from it. 13 colts and geldings will go two turns over the cushion track Saturday, and here's a look at the field.

1) Electric Eddie

Pros: The hard-knocking son of Square Eddie has back-to-back second-place finishes in stakes company on his resume. Last out, he ran a solid second at this route, so the two-turn setting shouldn't be too much of an issue.

Cons: While he's gotten better near the end of his 2-year-old season, Electric Eddie is still a maiden. He's also taking a huge step up in class from the listed stakes ranks, and this field includes Tamarando, who dispatched him fairly easily last out in the Real Quiet.

2) Tamarando

Pros: One of the few Grade I winners in this field, Tamarando won the Del Mar Futurity earlier this year and most recently came from off the pace to win the Real Quiet going away. There were some concerns after the Jerry Hollendorfer trainee was beaten twice at Santa Anita, but he seems to be rounding into form.

Cons: You can argue he didn't beat much last out, and while the starts at Santa Anita came on conventional dirt, he fell to several horses he'll face again today in those outings (namely FrontRunner winner Bond Holder).

3) Bond Holder

Pros: His fourth-place finish in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile may have been better than it looked. He was  well back early and had to alter course in the stretch, yet still managed to beat most of a very talented field. Additionally, his most recent six-furlong drill in 1:12 and change at Hollywood Park (per Equibase) was very good.

Cons: As sharp as he was at Santa Anita, he's only got one win in six lifetime starts, and is 0-for-4 on synthetic surfaces. That includes an inauspicious debut at Hollywood Park in July, when he ran fifth.

4) Candy Boy

Pros: His maiden-breaking win last out was extremely impressive. He went from last to first at this route and kicked away to win by more than eight lengths. The workouts since then have been excellent, and he attracts the services of Gary Stevens.

Cons: This is a big step up in class. He beat just four others in the aforementioned victory, and two back, he had the misfortune of running into Tap It Rich, who shows up in this spot.

5) Tap It Rich

Pros: A buzz horse entering the Breeders' Cup Juvenile off a very impressive win at first asking, the Bob Baffert trainee ran fifth after a troubled trip. He has every reason to improve off of that effort, and Baffert has changed bits in an attempt to get the son of Tapit to be more relaxed during the race.

Cons: Like many young horses, there are questions about his maturity. He was rank at times during the Juvenile, and this race features a similarly-large field with very talented horses. If he puts it together, he's a major player, but the potential exists for him to find distractions in his first-ever start on a synthetic surface.

6) Shared Belief

Pros: Good luck finding holes in his first two starts. After a dominant maiden win at Golden Gate, Jerry Hollendorfer sent the gelding south for a romp in the Grade III Hollywood Prevue. He thumped a field that included the highly-touted Kobe's Back by nearly eight lengths in 1:22.17 for the seven-furlong distance, and a repeat effort would make him very difficult to beat.

Cons: About the only unknown with the son of Candy Ride is the two-turn distance. His pedigree (out of a Storm Cat mare) would indicate that the added ground should not be a problem, but he'd be far from the first horse to have trouble stretching out against a Grade I field.

7) Even Echo

Pros: Well, he'll be a price.

Cons: This horse is 0-for-6, has never finished better than fifth, and was thumped in the FrontRunner in his only other try in graded company.

8) Brother Soldier

Pros: He broke his maiden at first asking and hasn't run badly in two starts since then. He was forced to close into the Santa Anita speed bias two back and ran third in the Prevue last out over this surface.

Cons: Prevue winner Shared Belief beat him by nearly 13 lengths in his last outing, and Joe Talamo got off to ride Karma King. Edwin Maldonado is more than capable, but that's a LOT of ground to make up for a horse trying two turns for the first time.

9) Karma King

Pros: He's yet to run a bad one in three lifetime starts. He won first out at Del Mar, was second in an allowance at Golden Gate, and most recently ran third in the Real Quiet behind Tamarando and Electric Eddie. Talamo stays on, and he's been riding well.

Cons: There's plenty of early speed to keep this one company early. Last out, he set pretty solid fractions before getting reeled in, and on paper, a similar situation seems possible in this spot unless he shakes loose and slows things down going around the first turn.

10) Poker Player

Pros: He's accomplished on a synthetic surface, having won the Grade III Bourbon at Keeneland before a failed run in the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf.The distance isn't an issue, and his late-running style ensures he'll at least be moving in the right direction late in the game.

Cons: This will be his fifth start at as many racetracks since August. While the win in the Bourbon was really solid, his eighth-place run last out raises the chances that the Grade I level is a bit too much for him at this point.

11) Sheikinator

Pros: This son of Curlin out of a Dixie Union mare is tailor-made for two turns. He overcame adversity last out at Churchill, moving five-wide amidst slow early fractions to break his maiden at this distance. Two back in his debut, he blew the break, yet still rallied for second money on the polytrack at Keeneland.

Cons: This is a major jump in class for the Ken McPeek trainee. Also, we're getting to where post positions start becoming problems, and another wide trip could be in the cards.

12) Rankhasprivileges

Pros: He's done very little wrong, winning at first asking at Keeneland before running third in the Delta Jackpot. Delta Downs isn't often kind to deep closers, but the son of Einstein salvaged a share despite running in last for most of the early going. Hollywood Park should be much more fair to his running style.

Cons: They weren't crawling early last out, and Rankhasprivileges was still beaten by open lengths. Maybe Rise Up was THAT good that day, but this is a very good field, and this post may leave him in the parking lot around the first turn.

13) Kobe's Back

Pros: If not for the presence of Shared Belief, we'd be talking about a sharp return by Kobe's Back, who ran second in the Prevue and topped the third-place finisher by more than four lengths in his first start since June. The son of Flatter should only be sharper in his second start off the layoff for John Sadler, and he's attracted Joel Rosario.

Cons: Rosario will have his hands full in saving ground from the 13-hole. Also, maybe he needed the race to a certain extent, but nearly eight lengths is a lot of ground to make up to Shared Belief, especially when that one drew a far better post.


comments powered by Disqus

Older Comments about CashCall Futurity Pros and Cons...

tm, the serby is the only day similar to a football game or baseball game. thay is how sports are.
Tap it Rich
Unfortunately,the Derby brand has become so big.People are willing to go to any expense or effort to be a part of Oaks/Derby Weekend. I was shocked,it is not a race in Kentucky. It is a religion. They close down the schools and everyone makes a buck that weekend. A 1 mile cab ride will cost you $30 a person. The arrogance of the Churchill executives shows. They could care less. Not that it matters,but i had a great laugh when i saw the feed and highlights when i got home. Most of the owners were outside watching the race and getting drenched in the rain. Then you see Todd and Shug in the warmth and dry atmosphere of the Racing Secretarys office. Gotta love it.
Right Buck, should have said *another* classless… and, as Andrew notes, their shameless move seems to have had little or no effect on the field, so throw *ineffective* in there too.
Tom. I have heard your complaints about treatment before. It is a disgrace. Matt Winn would be rolling over in his grave.
buck,you mention the lack of class CD shows.Forget the point system,i can attest first hand .At last years Derby it was one of the worst experiences ,when it should of been a day to remember.The disrespect they show to the non profile owners of horses in the Derby is dispicable.Why wouldn't they carry out this attitude in all other buisiness doings.
I visited Hawthorne once, when I was in Chicago and it was a great place to visit.
When did Churchill show any class with the point system? Ask Hawthorne that question too.
Bond Holder and Tap it Rich look good >> Zero Derby points is a Slap in the face, *Don’t let the door hit you on the way out*, classless Churchill {NoToastingToYou!!!} move.
I am for Tap it Rich and Hear the Ghost in the Native Diver. Hopefully the day for greys. Good luck, Tom and all who will be betting.
Prior to looking at the PPs' i thought this race was Shared Beliefs for the taking. In looking at the race now that i have the data,he is not as fast as he looks on the track. The horse to beat is Tap It Rich,his question mark is the carpet. Assuming he can handle it,there is no reason to think that he can't. Baffert is nobodys fool,he will not expose a young horse in a position to fail. T.I.R. is not only the fastest horse in the race,he has had 2 glaring excuses in both trips. A clean trip in this race,and the rest are running for minor awards. I am just hoping i can get 5/2 on this guy today.
Bond Holder (should be about 10-1) is my long shot pick in the CashCall Futurity. Much tougher spot for Shared Belief today ... if he wins this, he could be something special.
GOOOO Sheck !!!! jlp
If he thinks he is something special,he would never abuse him like he is. More than likely these guys are looking for something. It is not the 60% of a $750K purse. I am thinking they are looking to sell all or a portion.His current resume does not match the potential. If he becomes a 3yo without a Stakes win,value goes down.
I should say, Exacta box bomb. And, yes, tmallios, it does look like he might be overusing him, but, maybe he thinks this horse could be something special. To run him back in a $750K race after a $1M race? After this race, they should take a breather.
I always pegged Mcpeek as not only a top trainer,but also a top horseman. But this move,shipping him out to the Wrong Coast to run again.Why not just put a Sulky on him and turn him into a Harness Horse. 3 races in 50 some odd days.A bit much Ken. Maybe someone should alert him that the race is on the track.Not to how fast you can get to 10,in the shortest period of time. Maybe this is a prep for a race in another 4 weeks.
You ever picked a horse, that didn't seem to prove out, and, next race(or several, depending on your determination), you want to bet him back? That, for me, would be Rankhasprivileges. This would be his third race as a 2YO. He broke his maiden over synthetic at first asking at Keeneland. Traveled from Kentucky to Louisiana to run in the $1M Delta Jackpot, finishing third. And now, they travel to California, to attempt beating the competition at Hollywood. His previous race at Delta Downs was breaking from the 7 hole in the "bullring". This would be a good prep for breaking from the 12 hole. Let's try 6-10-12 for an Exacta bomb.
I noticed the blinkers off for the 9--like that.
Mary - Tamarando is definitely in my top 10. He is proven over two turns and a Grade 1 winner and might be an underlay. If he stays at 4-1 or above, I'd put money on him. Seems that there are a lot of closers in this race and think Karma King with blinkers off might improve. Worth a shot if he is at least 12-1. Bond Holder is the other Grade 1 winner and ran a decent race in BC Juv last out. If he is at least 6-1 worth a bet too.
jinlie, I'm going with 2 Tamarando over his stablemate 6 Shared Belief, then 4 and 5.

Related Pages

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.

Related Stories

Best of the Blogs

Top Stories