This weekend, Delta Downs in Vinton Lousiana is the site of the next races in my Enlightened Derby and Oaks Trails, a series that determines whom I believe should be the top representatives for the Kentucky Derby and Oaks next year. Before launching to analysis for Saturday’s Delta Downs Jackpot and Delta Downs Princess Stakes, here are the top horses in the geographical divisions of the EDT and EOT based on points.
Blue Dancer 200
Less Than Perfect 125
Highway Boss, Hashtag Bourbon, Private Prospect, Waha Wild, Skim The Rail, Souper Colossal, My Point Exactly, Native American, Prime Engine, Pain and Misery, Capitalism, Gotta Get Paid, Stratagem, Grand Full Moon, 100
Conquest Typhoon, Daredevil, Competitive Edge 250
Samuel Deschameplain, I Spent It, Upstart, 100
American Pharoah, Texas Red 250
Calculate, Carpe Diem 100
Private Prospect 100
One Go All Go 50
Bourbon Cowboy 25
Southern division will actually begin with this weekend’s races at Delta Downs.
You’ll recall that I take the top 4 in each division, then 4 overall as wild-card entries as ‘also-eligible’.
Do The Danse, Strawberry Baby, APs Glory, Yelling Timber, Forest Lake, Concealedwithakiss, Naval Command, Ambleside Park, Lil Sugar Bear, 100
Sunset Glow, Take Charge Brandi 250
Her Emmynency, Top Decile, 100
By The Moon 350
Condo Commando 275
Conquest Harlanate 250
Quality Rocks 250
Sarah Sis 100
Happy To Go 50
South begins with Delta Downs this weekend.
Top 3 of each division get in, plus 2 wild cards.
Now that you know who have scored where, you’ll want to file this away, as the Derby Future Wager is soon upon us. For 11/28-30, I will choose 5 horses, $2 win on each, to survive all the way to May and win the run for all those roses. Yes, I’ll rank the contenders once those names are known, which I think will be on 11/25
On to Saturday’s races!
Delta Downs Jackpot is 8.5 furlongs for top 2YOs, $1 million.
Point allocation for the top 4 finishers in the EDT: 250-100-50-25. Prime Engine has 100 points coming in.
1 PRIME ENGINE ships from Emerald Downs. Winner of the Gottstein Futurity at the distance with an 80 Brisnet, as well as his maiden debut. First or 2nd at each point of call. Coming off layoff and a claim, you have to feel this horse is being thoroughly prepared to win. Indeed, he’s worked out well: 5 works at Santa Anita, 1 bullet work, 1 nearly so out of the gate. As a sprinter succeeding in a route, there’s much reason to be hopeful he can handle this field. ML odds are 8/1. I say he’s 9/2 and something of an overlay.
4 CONQUEST TSUNAMI won the Street Sense Stakes at Churchill last month, and a pair of ungraded events at Woodbine earlier in 2014. 5 wins in 6 races, suffered trouble in the stretch of the Breeders Futurity at Keeneland last month, finishing 6th of 12. I have him and Prime Engine very close together. What I like about #4 is that he is the only horse in the field to win upon being shipped (June 21, the Victoria, Woodbine). He’s won before from a rise in class and stretchout, and put up 2 very fast works since the Street Sense. He’s the other horse to enter winning a route as a sprinter, an angle I do like. 3 of his 5 wins are from a middle post. The 4/1 ML odds are about right.
6 GOLDEN ACTOR is the local threat, with an 87 Brisnet winner on this track in the Jean Lafit on 10/25, and maiden win in his 2nd start. Top average-winning distance from pedigree (Curlin/Clever Actress, by Theatrical). A few ROI angles present themselves too tho with a small sample of races. ML odds of 7/2 are also accurate.
The Delta Downs Princess are for top 2YO fillies going 1 mile. $400k at stake. Same point allocation as with the Jackpot. Coming in, Lil Super Bear has 100 points, Take Charge Brandi 250.
6 The aforementioned TAKE CHARGE BRANDI exploded to a 101 Brisnet win in the Breeders Cup Juvenile Fillies race, easily the best of her 6-race career. Top pedigree of the field (Giant’s Causeway/Charming, by Seeking The Gold). Has run 5 of those races in Graded company. The excellent trip last out for this sprinter makes her a prime candidate here.
7 VIVIAN DA BLING is the local product, winning a 100k ungraded race here last month, this after placing 4th in the Adirondack at Saratoga, and 2 wire to wire wins to start her career. She’s the single horse to have successfully won after stretching out (in this case, 6.5 to 7 furlongs). 3 wins and a 4th lifetime, plus win over this track makes her a force to be reckoned with.
1 DANESSA DELUXE has 2 wins, 2 seconds, winning at the maiden level in her third try, and also a 75k optional claimer right after, all taking place in Florida. Her 88 score last time at this distance is best of the field for one mile. Trainer Antonio Sano has 19% winners and 38% placings in Graded stakes events for a 5.24 ROI. Closers in mile races during the meet are winning 35% of the time, and 25% from the rail.
This post will be updated once tomorrow’s scratches and changes are released.