Tuesday, July 28, 2020

Horse Racing - My Summer Salvation

The one bright spot this summer that has kept me going is horse racing.  I am already a racing fan but as most other sports that I love are out of commission - professional tennis, The Masters, horse showing - racing has kept going and even without spectators, the sport is great to watch.  And while the Derby trail was turned upside down, it has allowed for more late-bloomers to enter the mix.  

In the next few weeks, there will be a few more good races in the run-up to the Derby as well as prep races for the Breeders' Cup in early November.

Some highlights to watch........

Maximum Security just won his first race last weekend under new trainer Bob Baffert with also with a new jockey (his regular one is out with Covid).  He's likely pointed to the BC Classic and would expect him to run another G1 race between now and then.  He won. It wasn't pretty but he won as great champions tend to do.

Tiz the Law is going to be the Derby favorite and the accolades he receives are well-deserved.  He won the Belmont easily but expect more competition in the Derby from a few he hasn't raced against yet and post position will be key.  He'll run next week in The Travers at Saratoga but likely won't be tested.

Honor AP is another favorite who could give Tiz the Law trouble when they finally meet.  He's going to run again on the West Coast where he is based but I was hoping to see him in The Travers.  He'll run next weekend in The Shared Belief Stakes.

(Benoit Photo)

On Saturday be sure to watch The Whitney from Saratoga.  There are some very nice horses in this race and I am not sure who to bet on - Code of Honor or Tom's d'Etat. Tom's d'Etat will be the heavy favorite if he runs.
  • 2020 Whitney (G1)
  • 1 1/8 m, Dirt; 4+ M
OwendaleB. CoxProbable 
Mr. BuffJ. KimmelProbable 
By My StandardsW. CalhounProbable 
BodexpressG. DelgadoPossible 
Code of HonorC. McGaughey IIIProbable 
Improbable B. BaffertProbable 
Tom's d'EtatA. Stall, Jr.Probable 

Another horse I have my eye on is Art Collector who won the Blue Grass at Keeneland in July. He's on a roll and is peaking at the right time so I would put him in the Derby mix for sure.  I was hoping he'd also go to the Travers but instead will run next weekend at the Ellis Park Derby on August 9th.  

And what would a summer of horse racing be without mentioned the great Enable.  The great horse became the first three-time winner of Ascot's showpiece llast weekend, the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth QIPCO Stakes (G1).

After her eleventh success at the top level, Enable now boasts three King Georges, an English and Irish Oaks, two Yorkshire Oaks, two Arcs, a Coral-Eclipse (G1), and a Longines Breeders' Cup Turf (G1T).  But the real goal is a third Arc which has never been done before.  Stay tuned for the fall to see what happens. There is nothing better than a great mare.

(NYT Photo)

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