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The Derby Trail 2023 thread

I had to see that.


The stallion Violence had a good day: Forte in Florida, Raising Cain in New York.

Ooops, Raise Cain, not Raising Cain

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I recently saw a sales ad for a spectacular Violence filly being transitioned to a sporthorse career. Just beautifully put together with a ton of presence. If I’d had the means for another, I’d have scooped her up in a second.

Definitely interested to see how his offspring do in their post-track careers as well as on the Derby Trail!

Old news now, but I believe that was Harlocap, who ran for Asmussen in the Risen Star and ran 6th.

Fort Warren was supposed to go to Brittany Russell, but was scratched out of the graded stakes race he was supposed to go in with her.

One question I wanted to ask here is what happens to the grooms that have been working with these horses for a year, who are transferring to new barns? I don’t imagine they “go with” the horse, right? Seeems like that might affect some of these horses in some manner?

So Tapit Trice: sure tried hard to lose the race. Broke slowly, did not get going, went super wide, but still won on raw talent. Should be interesting when he gets more experience.


Is it just me, or does anyone else find it weird to see a horse (in this case Arabian Knight) referred to as “undefeated” when that horse’s career is comprised of all of two races? I suppose it was inevitable, with racing becoming secondary in importance to producing high dollar offspring. But it sounds silly.

Arabian Knight will not be starting in the Derby. As far as I can tell it’s not due to injury; the colt just isn’t making the sort of progress expected of a potential Derby starter.

Tapit Trice just, to me, seems more immature then just green. Sometimes looks awkward as do many big youngsters on the road to maturity, he’s still figuring out what he’s supposed to do. No doubt why TP and his owners are taking it slow at a somewhat softer prep race and aiming for the Bluegrass. He may not have been keen but he sure put the others away with little effort when he finally got somewhat interested.

He may need a bit more time but might be the best of the bunch come summer if not before.

my plan was to save Tapit Trice for the Belmont. I think he is more suited for that race.

It’s been 2-3 years since I wagered on any of the TC races though but I still have a good time looking at everybody, trying to figure out the puzzles of the races, etc.

The most fun I had last year? I skipped capping the Breeders Cup races, and went full bore on the Melbourne Cup. That was a good race. I really liked the horses in there, was supposed to be 24 but I think they ended up with 22 or so. There were some gorgeous pedigrees. A friend hit the $1 exacta for $600+…I like to save my small bankroll for races like this. There was such a lot of informatoin on the horses in that race, it was generally a lot easier to figure out than I thought it would be. So now, I’m hooked. I’ll be doing that one every year. !! I am looking for an NZ horse…they seem like nice ones. It was just darn fun learning all the pedigrees and backgrounds, and the wonderful fact that they were from 4 years old up to about 8 or 9…and still racing like they belonged.

You want to build fans for racing? …you don’t do that if they leave at the end of their 3 year old season to the breeding shed. (flightline, etc.)


I sometimes compare racing to football. Two-year-old year is comparable to high school sport, 3-year-old year is college, the breeding game is professional. The way things are now, the actual racing is merely a prep to where the money actually is, which is breeding. Not fun for the fans, but that’s where the money is. Those that don’t make it are cut from the team.

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Many, if not most, fans benefit from increased access to legal wagering. Lower level tracks don’t even have much decent grandstand seating, just tv screens and betting machines. Thats where the other big chunk of the money is.

It looks like Japan will have an entry!


Yeah, and in a year with few superstars dominating and lots of upsets in the prep races so far? Perhaps they have a legitimate shot, maybe their timing is right this year.

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Forte ran a terrific race in the Florida Derby–washy in the post parade, pretty far back early, took dirt, went very wide, and blasted by the others at the end.

Angel of Empire looked good in the Arkansas Derby.


Actually had another commitment so didn’t watch the races yesterday, will watch back later today. Good to hear deserving favorites starting to emerge out of a crowded group.

Agree - lots of challenges for him to overcome but he was professional and came to the party. What was interesting is that those are the kinds of challenges he could be faced with in the Derby.

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The huge field in the Derby may make it even harder for Forte. Lately horses on or near the front seem to do better in the Derby.

If he gets shuffled back and has to go super wide, not sure he will be able to overcome that. However, assuming he stays sound, he is my Belmont horse. Smaller field, bigger track, and I think he can do the distance.

Forte got it done, but he just looked to be laboring the entire race.

I was more impressed with the run by Wet Paint in the Fantasy.
Affirmative Lady also had a nice run to win the Gulfstream Park Oaks.
Looking forward to seeing them in the Oaks.

Continuar is coming too, got an automatic entry. I like him better than Derma Sotogake.

However, Derma Sotogake is one fast horse, to quote Haskins: “but as of April 3 the fastest 3-year-old on the Derby trail is from Japan…Derma Sotogake has already run twice at a mile, once at 1 1/16 miles, four times at 1 1/8 miles, and once at 1 3/16 miles.”

Says that based on his time he probably could have won the Dubai Cup.

But I still like Continuar and Dura Erede as well a bit better based on pedigree. I’m glad they are coming though…the Japanese are not lazy about any of this, they have watched, they put in the work, they want to eventually win this race and have been patiently working on it.


That sounds good!. For the record, I have a few set aside for The Belmont Stakes. In essence, I use the KY Derby prep races to build my Belmont stable. I don’t wager the prep races or the KY Derby. So I look for the ones like Country House who don’t win prep races because they “run out of track” and need longer.

My list so far is Hayes Strike, Congruent, and Bluebirds Over

Still hoping Scoobie Quando gets some points on Saturday!