Archarcharch is a Triple Threat

Archarcharch takes the Southwest (Top story)
Zipse’s Kentucky Derby Daily – Day 11

It’s been seven years since Smarty Jones thrilled racing fans with wins in the Kentucky Derby and Preakness, before tasting defeat for the first time in the late stages of the Belmont Stakes. That spring, Smarty traveled down the Arkansas path on his way to Louisville, including wins in the Southwest, and Arkansas Derby. This year it is Archarcharch who hopes to parlay victories in both of those races into a big win on the first Saturday in May. There are many reasons to believe that the son of Arch may be up to the task.

Distance should not be a problem. Archarcharch by Arch, out of Woodman’s Dancer, by Woodman has stamina all over his pedigree. Notably his sire, despite being very lightly raced, was able to account for the Super Derby back when it was still a 1 ¼ mile race. We all know what Arch’s most famous son, Blame was able to accomplish, with the monumental victory in last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Classic. A race that was run at the same track and distance of the Kentucky Derby. Meanwhile on the female side of the family Archarcharch also comes from hearty stock. His broodmare sire, Woodman, was a champion runner  in Ireland, but had much success as a sire in the American Classics. His son Hansel won both the Preakness and Belmont on his way to an Eclipse Award, and another son, Timber County, won both the Breeder’s Cup Juvenile  at Churchill Downs and the Preakness the following year.

While Archarcharch is currently on the lose-win-lose-win pattern so far in his six race career, he appears to be coming to Kentucky in marvelous form. His last race, the Arkansas Derby, was big in that it may have been the best of all the Derby preps. While Nehro was getting to him late, it would be easy to argue that rider Jon Court made a perfectly timed move to win. It is also worth noting that Nehro made little if any ground up on the winner from the eighth pole to the sixteenth pole. This could become vital in the Derby when the race if often won by horses who can make things happen on the far turn.

Certainly Archarcharch would seem to be this type of horse. He can come from well behind when the pace is hot, but he is tractable enough to lay closer when the early fractions are slower. In all of his races, he has demonstrated the ability to accelerate on the backstretch to put himself in position on the turn. Even in his most recent loss, a 3rd place finish in the Rebel Stakes, Archarcharch demonstrated the ability to put himself in great position on the turn. The loose on the lead The Factor was way too strong that day, but Archarcharch ran on well, just missing 2nd place. In his Oaklawn preps, the Jinks Fires trained colt also got a good deal of experience in big fields and starting from various places in the starting gate. All of this should have him well prepared for the 20 horse craziness he will face in the Derby.

He also should be well prepared by his connections. Trainer Jinks Fires and jockey Jon Court are long time fixtures on Kentucky race tracks.  While collecting solid numbers over the years, neither man has had a horse like Archarcharch before, and neither have won anything like the run for the roses before. Fires is known as one of the sports’ good guys, and his connection and loyalty to Court runs deeper than just business. As the son-in-law of the trainer, Court is poised to keep the mount on the stable star who he has ridden in all six starts, but don’t think he is not worthy. The 31 year veteran is nothing but solid in the saddle, and is very deserving of riding in the Derby for the first time in his career.

Solid connections, excellent form and experience, and breeding that suggests success at the distance. Yes folks, Archarcharch has as much going for him as any horse that will step into this year’s Kentucky Derby starting gate.



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Older Comments about Archarcharch is a Triple Threat...

I hope others don't take notice. Would be awesome to get 10-1 on this horse in the Derby. Super Screener says "yes". He won the best prep of the year.
A very inspiring work this morning...keeps looking more and more dangerous.
Arch3 has made some nice wide moves in his preps. For all those in love with Nehro, they are only focusing on the last 10 seconds of the Arkansas Derby. Look how they got there. Arch3 had a tough wide trip and a much tougher race.
now he just sounds like looking at lucky.
Arch3 has as good a chance as anyone, but he is a one-paced horse who must avoid traffic problems. Jon Court will help with that, but I think Dialed In and "Mo get home before AAA.
i say archx3, soldat and toby. but i am a bit crazy when it comes to handicapping.i
Archarcharch looks liegit but he won't be my top choice. Nehro was the obviously superior runner in the Arkansas Derby and would have won had he hit his best stride a second earlier. I still like Uncle Mo and in this kind of wide open year it's not hard to imagine him returning to form and winning.
  • DeadHeat · If Mo runs to form and gets the distance, and I think he will, then he towers over these other horses. I would give second to Arch3 and expect to see Toby and ST in there as well. · 2399 days ago
I am glad that someone is saying that maybe, just maybe, Jon Court has timed his runs to hit the wire perfectly in the Southwest and the Ark Derby. Visually, it appeared he was getting caught at the wire, but he still go there first. It's not like he was an early speed horse who was fading. I look for Court and A3 to make another strong move up the stretch at Churchill. And with a lot of the speed pulling out of the race, they'll be much closer than they were in the Arkansas Derby. I'm STILL on this horse to win, it's just that my 'other' horses keep changing. Nice, nice article. Thanks.
  • BrianBarnett · well If J. Court timed it that way he sure had the owners/bettors sweating. · 2400 days ago
  • DeadHeat · JC stopped riding the last few yards and let the horse coast. That turn of foot will help if he stays around 5 off the leaders and explodes in the final 3/16. · 2399 days ago
How about Toby's Corner? gotta like a Horse at this age that shows monster improvement race after race. There are more than a few in the field that have seemed to peak. Toby might still be getting better.
  • DeadHeat · He would be in my top five. His improvements have not been giant leaps, but steady improvements, which is what you want to see coming into the Derby. · 2399 days ago
Archx3/Nehro likely to run 1-2 again with Nehro turning the tables.
i know i will go with archarcharch.
I must have watched the wrong Arkansas Derby. In the race a saw Arch3 won by a head and I don't think there is anything that horse had left had there been another 1/8 of a mile.
Everyone says this derby is so wide open, I tend to disagree. There's a lot of horses I can completely toss.. Arch x 3 is not one of them, His pedigree is royal and his style fits the derby.. Definitely gonna be there at the finish
  • tiznow · You know I'm not tossing him! May not be top choice, but will be a factor I think. · 2400 days ago
I love him, not sure if he will be my top Derby pick, but I've loved him since seeing him lose in Nov at Churchill.
I agree with you Scott. Plenty of tosses. There is a gap between the best and the second stringers IMO.
Thanks Mike ... I like the horse who was running fast at the end (Nehro) a lot, but I think you are right. Fast finishes can often distort people's perception on who was the best horse. Arch Cubed got to the wire first, and he may do it again in Louisville.
  • mikemoss13 · And remember, JP's Gusto was catching A3 in the Southwest....according to the experts. How'd he end up in the Rebel and Ark Derby? · 2400 days ago
  • mikemoss13 · And besides, I used to fall in that trap. See a visually impressive horse coming up a bit short at the end of a race, or whatever. Then playing him next out only to be disappointed. I am now concentrating my handicapping on consistency and potential, rather than how a horse finished in one race. Nehro has finished strong in 2 consecutive races now. In my opinion, he doesn't need more distance, he needs to be a bit closer and/or start his finishing kick sooner. · 2400 days ago
This IMO is actually not a horrible year. Most of these had valid excuses to lose, and if you think about it, some of the most dominating TC participants were ordinary coming into the Derby or had lost a prep or two. Arch3 seems to be a tough colt, he does not only have 3 preps but 4, and only really disappointed in one. Since then he's been very consistent.

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