It’s about time that i deliver a
comprehensive update on the Trails. I’ve
updated all point totals and projections on
who are in my field of 20 if the Derby Trail
Remember that I’m choosing one race per
track (Del Mar 2, as they hosted the Breeders
Cup) that best fits the Trail, with an
appropriate point ranking for the top 4 in
each race. More are given to Graded races
and 3YO races.
Top 4 of horses points within their own
division make the show. If there are ties,
they are first broken by the graded level,
then purse, then distance.
When defections from the Trail occur, or
there are horses in multiple divisions, I then
draw from horses between the divisions
where the tie exists, and then use points,
purse, grade and distance as the tiebreakers.
This division has wrapped up as of 3/17.
The winners of 4 of the 5 3YO races are all
in. Those horses are:
Reride, Primo Tech, Paced, and VIP Code.
Take Charge Deputy is on the outside here,
as he won a small stakes event in Portland
Meadows…15k too small compared to
One race remains, that being the Wood
Memorial on 4/7.
Top 4 right now are Firenze Fire, Sporting
Chance, Untamed Domain and Good Magic.
Free Drop Billy and Hemp Hemp Hurray are
outside of these (but read on about how this
The Wood Memorial will seal the fate of
these horses. It’s likely that a win or 2nd will
make my Derby Trail version a lock for such
Each race is taking place for the 3YOs. With
just the Tampa Bay Derby in the books, the
top 4 there are in: Quip, Flameaway, World
Of Trouble and Vino Rosso. The Louisiana
Derby comes up on Saturday 3/24. Of
these, Quip and Vino Rosso are nominated.
Quip likely won’t need the race, but World Of
Trouble could use it. Flameaway should be a
lock in also.
3 of the races took place last year. One
remains, in the form of the Santa Anita
Derby on 4/7. Top 4 right now are Bolt d’
Oro, McKinzie, Good Magic, and Solomini.
Good Magic already has a top 4 spot in the
Northeast. To resolve, I looked at those who
ran in either the Northeast or Cali and took
the one with the most overall points. Free
Drop Billy broke a tie with Hemp Hemp
Hurray, Zatter and Intelligent Regard, having
won at Grade 1 and a 350k purse, that race
being the Hopeful at Saratoga. Free Drop
Billy qualifies out of Cali, with Good Magic
representing the Northeast
2 races already took place for the 2YOs, and
1 for 3YOs. Another is on Sunday, the
Sunland Derby, followed by the Blue Grass,
and the Arkansas Derby. Top 4 here are
Blended Citizen (only other horse in 4
digits), Pony Up, Aramak (top 3 in the Jet
Ruby), and Enticed. Greyvitos on the outside
looking, scoring a win in a listed stakes but
not a graded win.
My own biggest snub is easily Fortified
Effort. 2nd to Primo Touch in the Turf
Paradise Derby, he was 2nd to Themistor in
the Gold Rush Futurity at Arapahoe Park.
Comparing my horses to the actual Derby
Trail, a number of horses stand out as
exceptions to my rule: Bravazo, Promises
Fulfilled, Bravazo, Magnum Moon,
Combatant, Snapper Sinclair, Strike Power,
Old Time Revival. Instilled Regard, Catholic
Boy, My Boy Jack, Greyvitos are not in the
field for me but they all have enough actual
points. A good deal of parity, but we’ll see
how this coming weekend’s races impact the
The difference with the Oaks is that there
are actually 14 runners max, and I choose
top 3 from my divisions, and top 2 of the
minors. Speaking of those small tracks and
Here again with just the Sunland Park Oaks
remaining, 2 horses remain in contention
following a big tiebreak: Go Noni Go and
Smokinpaddylassie. They both won 100k
races at the same distance. For this, I’ll
break the tie by awarding the edge to the
horse with more overall ponts. Go Noni Go is
that filly. She finished 3rd in the Kentucky
Downs Juvenile Fillies. The winner of the
Sunland Park Oaks will get the top spot, with
Go Noni Go 2nd, unless there’s some other
This division rather cut-and-dried. The winners of the 3 stakes races at 2 are in the forefront: Moonshine Memories, Caledonia Road (tiebreak edge), and Dream Tree. Notably, Piedi Bianchi is next out. FInal race is the Santa Anita Oaks on 4/7. Top 2 of that race, plus Caledonia Road, should be how the Trails resolve here.
Just 3 races but all at 3. Fair Grounds Oaks next Saturday is the 2nd of the 3. So far, top 3 of the Florida Oaks qualify: Andina Del Sur, Goodthingstaketime, Altea. Winner of the Fair Grounds Oaks and Gulfstream Park Oaks project to be the 3 I use.
The influence from this division comes from 4 races at 2. The last one is the Gazelle at Aqueduct. Between 4 winners, I had to eliminate (for now) Pacific Gale, who won the listed Sorority Stakes at Monmouth. The others have won more classy races: Separation Of Powers (1st Frizette, 3rd Spinaway), Lady Ivanki (Spinaway winner), Capla Temptress (Natalma winner)
Top 2 in the Gazelle should be a lock for a win via this region.
2 races remain at 2YO, 2 remain for the 3YOs. Top 3 currently are Ultima D, Road To Victory and Monomoy Girl, who wins tiebreak over Best Performances. Next up is the Ashland Stakes at Keeneland 4/7, and the Fantasy Stakes at Oaklawn 4/13.
My snub here is Testing One Two, who won the 60k Take Charge Brandi at Delta Downs. The purse is 40k cheaper than ther Bourbonette Oaks and Beyond The Wire Stakes.
As for actual Oaks points, here are the discrepancies:
Midnight Bisou, Midnight Disguise, Cosmic Burst, Rayya, Take Charge Paula, Wonder Gadot, Thirteen Squared, Amy’s Challenge, Classy Act, Patrona Margarita, Red Ruby, Sassy Sienna, That’s a lot of fillies.