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Ask Frank Daignault Frank Daignault is recognized as an authority on surf fishing for striped bass. He is the author of six books and hundreds of magazine articles. Frank is a member of the Outdoor Writers of America and lectures throughout the Northeast.

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  #1  
Old 03-01-2013, 08:52 PM
Doug Doug is offline
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Default Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Sorry Frank and Chris, I couldn't wait any more, nine weeks to the big day.

Since there is a different way of qualifying (points earned instead of graded stakes earnings) this year for the Kentucky Derby, I thought that eliminating horses instead of touting horses may be a better way of finding a winner.

First up may be Orb, winner of the Fountain of Youth (FOY) at Gulfstream Park last weekend. He only has 1 chance of winning the Kentucky Derby and in order to do that he will have to win the Florida Derby (FD) later this month.

The last KD winner that won the FOY was Thunder Gulch in 1995. Before that is was Spectacular Bid in 1979. Both horses went on to win the FD before running in the KD. Without a victory in the FD scratch Orb if he runs in the KD as I see no horse that won only the FOY win the KD in the last forty years. Both Spectacular Bid and Thunder Gulch won two of the three Triple Crown races those years.

In fact, Spectacular Bid started the current streak of no TC winners as Affirmed was the last one to do it in 1978.

Doug
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  #2  
Old 03-02-2013, 05:19 AM
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Frank Daignault Frank Daignault is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Once again I know I am outgunned around here when that subject comes up. But Joyce and I have fun with it and at least we'll be drinking with the windows open when they go off. Might even be plucking turkeys.
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Old 03-07-2013, 09:35 AM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

I missed this last week, probably because it was posted at 9 pm on a Friday night, when I was between my 5th and 6th beers.

For the record: I have not watched a whit of any of the prep races. I've been too busy. But the Derby is now getting close (8 weeks from this Saturday, March 9), and the picture should be getting clearer. I'll post back here after I've had a chance to form some opinions.
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Old 03-12-2013, 07:56 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Ive Struck A Nerve, the horse that WAS leading the points race with 51 is out with a fractured sesamoid. The horse would have been pretty long odds as the prep race he won paid a $2 win bet over $272 (135-1 odds).

So far, Vyjack is the only horse I've seen run in these preps that exhibited the running style that is best suited for the Kentucky Derby.

We will consider Orb only if he wins the Florida Derby, other wise he is out in my book.

Verrazano (won Tampa Bay Derby) reminds me of the kind of horse that has owners and/or a trainer that prefers to run easy prep races instead of facing the best. I certainly did not find his race excitable (last 1/16 of a mile in 6.40 seconds) and his running style on the front to be a liability. Either Verrazano (mile in 1:37.56) is somewhat ordinary or the horse that won the first (Maiden) race at Tampa Bay (New Line trained by William Mott, mile in 1:38.43) that day is a real big deal.

There is something about D. Wayne Lukas's horse "Will Take Charge" that has caught my eye early, not sure why yet.

Doug
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Old 03-17-2013, 12:32 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

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There is something about D. Wayne Lukas's horse "Will Take Charge" that has caught my eye early, not sure why yet.

Doug
Nice win for Will Take Charge yesterday in the Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park. A nice hit for me, with a mere $10 to win and $10 to show on the horse I got back a cool $339 (28-1 odds to win, $58.00 for a $2 win bet, $9.80 for a $2 show bet). I thought the horse should have been half those odds (14-1) but people who base (handicap) young horses solely on the Beyer Rating system had no chance in this race.

Although the race times aren't impressive, the way Will won it was as he was 4 wide around the first turn and was at least 3 wide around the last turn and he also ran in a KD style that is what you want.

Now comes a difficult decision for the owner/trainer, wait until the Kentucky Derby to run again (7 weeks between races) or 1 more prep race in say either the Santa Anita Derby in California (3 weeks from now) or the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland (4 weeks from now).

Doug
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Old 03-31-2013, 10:00 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Does Chris have a horse in this race he is not going to tell us about? We know he has been sort of "The Horse Killer" these last few years, just the mere mention of adulation of a contender from him has meant dire consequence.

Just kidding Chris, I'm starting to feel like a one man country band opening for Slayer here .

OK, Orb won the Florida Derby so we have a possible Triple Crown winner here. I'm not so sure though as he was 9 lengths (almost 2 seconds slower) behind the Gulfstream Oaks winner "Dreaming of Julia" four races earlier. Even more questionable would be be the 1 mile time of the race as compared to the earlier Optional Claiming race ($65,000) which was 6 lengths faster?

The track was fast, for now I'm going to give this Horse the benefit of doubt. With John Velasquez (top 5 rider in the world) riding Orb knowing there was not a lot of speed in the race, he did what he needed to do and nothing more, saved some horse for the later races. The horse has the proper style of a derby winner, certainly deserves to be the favorite as of now.

Doug
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Old 04-01-2013, 07:31 AM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

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Does Chris have a horse in this race he is not going to tell us about? We know he has been sort of "The Horse Killer" these last few years, just the mere mention of adulation of a contender from him has meant dire consequence.
I've been too busy, and haven't been paying attention. I haven't even seen the replay of the Florida Derby yet. Also, it's hard to get excited early when the horses are so fragile. It's at least an even-money proposition that Orb doesn't even make the Derby because he gets hurt. It seems like the limbs of modern Thoroughbreds are as durable as a faberge egg.

We're inside five weeks from the Derby now, though, and this Saturday is a biggie, with the Wood Memorial and the Santa Anita Derby on the same day. This time next week, we should have a clearer picture of the likely Derby field. By then, I'll hopefully have some kind of a clue about some of these horses.
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Old 04-07-2013, 07:37 PM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

So, Doug: is Verrazano the real deal? Is he a cinch in 4 weeks?

For those peeking in from the outside, Verrazano won the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct yesterday. He is undefeated, and figures to be a fairly heavy Derby favorite. Don't ask me what that means; I still haven't seen any of the races. Fortunately, I have a lot of time to get myself up to speed.
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Old 04-08-2013, 07:44 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

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Originally Posted by Chris Garrity View Post
So, Doug: is Verrazano the real deal? Is he a cinch in 4 weeks?
Hi Chris, no and no to be short and sweet. The track Saturday was playing fast, times for other races would say that Verrazano is somewhat ordinary if not downright slow. Here's why-

The mile time for the Wood was 1:37.72, that is 1 minute and 37.72 seconds.

The mile time for the next race was 1:37.81, problem being these were $12,500 claimers (4YO & up) running.

The mile time for the second race at Aqueduct was 1:37.66, problem being this was a Maiden (Special Weight) race, all horses entered had never won a race.

Two other mile times for that day were 1:36.52 and 1:36.50 for the Ruffian Handicap and the Gazelle Stakes (open), 6 lengths ahead of Verrazano if all in the same race.

Couple that with basically the same scenario that happened at Tampa Bay last month, Verrazano looks like a chalk blower to me. I hope the public does make him short odds, will mean better payoff for the winner.

Goldencents won the Santa Anita Derby (105 Beyer- Verrazano got a 95!) much faster, mile was in 1:35.72 with only the fillies Oaks race to compare there (1:36.36). Remember Floriday Derby day the Oaks winner beat Orb by 9 lengths.

Doug
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Old 04-08-2013, 08:07 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

We really only have 1 week left for the preps with 2 races this coming weekend, the Arkansas Derby and the Blue Grass Stakes. After that it will be the "Who Stays Healthy" game and who decides that maybe a shot at a different race may be more of a benefit in the long run.

If I had to put a futures bet in right now I would bet both Will Take Charge and Itsmyluckyday. I'll post one more update next Monday and a final analysis in the few days ahead of the race if I have computer access where we will be fishing that week.

Doug
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Old 04-23-2013, 09:52 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Horses with the better running style to win the Derby.

Orb
Java's War (stone closer, will need some racing luck)
Revolutionary
Vyjack
Normandy Invasion
My Lute- LONG SHOT SPECIAL

I'm backing off Will Take Charge for two reasons, biggest being absolutely awful race run at CD last year and bad race in the slop this year at OP. If track comes up dry and fast I'll reconsider as it looks like the horse is learning quickly.

Doug
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Old 04-29-2013, 07:28 PM
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
OK, Orb won the Florida Derby so we have a possible Triple Crown winner here. I'm not so sure though as he was 9 lengths (almost 2 seconds slower) behind the Gulfstream Oaks winner "Dreaming of Julia" four races earlier. Even more questionable would be be the 1 mile time of the race as compared to the earlier Optional Claiming race ($65,000) which was 6 lengths faster?

The horse has the proper style of a derby winner, certainly deserves to be the favorite as of now.

Doug
The real shame about this years Kentucky Derby is that the best 3 YO horse is running in the Kentucky Oaks instead. Dreaming of Julia "SMOKED" Orb that day, this filly is by far better than any of the entrants in Saturday's Derby. There is actually three other fillies running in the Oaks that are every bit as good as any of the colts at a mile and an eighth.

Doug
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:04 PM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

The field for the Derby was drawn today, and I've made my way through it for the first time. Here are my initial thoughts, which may change between now and Saturday:

- I don't like any of Pletcher's horses
- I don't particularly like Orb, but the fact that he's trained by Shug McGaughey is a big plus: Shug seems to have this horse poised for a big effort in the Derby.
- Itsmyluckyday is a strong win contender -- he would be my pick if I had to pick a horse right now.
- Java's War is VERY interesting -- good form could be hidden his last race, which was on a synthetic track.
- Goldcents is a strong contender, too: his form, especially his speed figures, looks good to me.

My preliminary notes, 90 minutes and a six pack in the making, are below. It's gonna be a great few days. I'll post more -- a lot more -- before Saturday.
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:07 PM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

Here are my notes. I can't figure out how to make it vertical.
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:30 AM
Chris Garrity Chris Garrity is offline
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Default Re: Triple Crown Thread for 2013

I can't figure out how to edit the previous post, so here's a better-oriented view of my half-baked scribblings. I'm starting to get VERY excited about the race.

In the unlikely event someone asks: the ESP thing is a way to classify the horses' running styles, something I borrowed from the Doc Sartin pace players. E = Early speed, horses who typically go right to the front; P = Pressers, the horses who typically sit right behind the E horses, and S = sustained pace, the horses who run in mid pack, or farther back, and make a charge late. Where horses have shown more than one style, two letters are listed, with the more likely style circled.

One interesting thing about the Derby is that "in most races, S" horses are usually at an insuperable disadvantage, but in the Derby the shape of the race very frequently favors them. It certainly looks like a possibility this year, as there are very many high-quality speed-type horses who may all burn themselves out early, setting up the race for a come-from-behinder.
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