TVG
The Free PPs
Breeders' Cup 2019 - Friday and Saturday, November 1 & 2 at Santa Anita will be headlined by the $6,000,000 Classic on Saturday. Other races on Saturday include the $4,000,000 Longines Turf | $2,000,000 Longines Distaff | Report Broken Links

Wizcapper’s Kentucky Derby 2019 Analysis

Road to the Kentucky Derby 145 featured image
PP Horse Trainer Odds
1 War of Will Casse 20-1
Got maiden win at CD when switching to the sloppy main track after four consecutive turf tries. Won back to back graded stakes at Fair Grounds to become the talk of the trail early in the year. But then the Lousiana Derby happened and he stepped on himself or something coming out of the gate and never recovered. Let’s give him the benefit of the doubt and toss the LA Derby. That makes him three-for-three and undefeated on dirt. But of those he beat, only Country House has meandered his way into the Derby with enough points and he’s hardly a top ten contender in here.
2 Tax Gargan 20-1
Claimed for $50K from Claiborne Farm as a two-year-old and promptly elevated into graded company in the Remsen when showing promise finishing third behind Maximus Mischief who was retired after his last start in the Holy Bull. Took the Withers to start ’19 and was 2nd in the Wood last time out. Appears he’ll need more time to develop and if he shows he can handle the class hike of the Derby, could see him better in the Belmont.
3 By My Standards Calhoun 20-1
First three career starts appear to show that he was going to have distance issues as he heads towards the classics. But the fact that he came right back to win the 1 1/8 miles Louisiana Derby in his last start and defying the tried and true handicapping angle of winning right back out of his maiden victory says a lot. He’s been the hot horse in morning workouts. If he can rate like he did LTO he could be a big part of the payoffs.
4 Gray Magician Miller 50-1
Gets in with 41 points by way of a point in the Sham and a second place finishing in the UAE Derby. Hadn’t been beyond 1 mile before his trip in Dubai at 1 3/16. Can’t see him having much impact other than adding a little pressure to the pace.
5 Improbable Baffert 6-1
Won the Street Sense here in his second start before taking the Los Alamitos Futurity to close out his two-year old campaign. Opened up at the top of the stretch in the G2 Rebel in his first race at 3 but was run down by Long Range Toddy at the wire. Wore blinkers in the Arkansas Derby LTO and tried to rate with a new rider but was no match for Omaha Beach. Gets his third different rider for Baffert with a chance to turn the tables on likely favorite OB. But it appears his max distance is somewhere closer to the Preakness.
6 Vekoma Weaver 20-1
Took the Blue Grass LTO as his final Derby prep on a day when speed was king at Keeneland. Will be making only his 5th start. Post position will be key to his performance and early positioning by Castellano will be everything to his stalking style.
7 Maximum Security Servis 10-1
Not sure what the other riders in the Florida Derby were thinking when Saez was left alone to set pedestrian fractions and walked home to make it four in a row. He’ll hit the track undefeated for the Derby. Skeptics note the slow fractions as the reason to suspect his ability to get the distance but it’s not like he can’t run faster if needed. He’ll be pressed harder this time and expect him to perform better than he’s being given a chance by other prognosticators.
8 Tacitus Mott 10-1
Not usually a fan of the Wood winner on Derby Day. But this guy has done nothing wrong winning his last three. Overcame troubled trip in Wood to get his highest BRIS speed fig 103. TB Derby win in prior was nice too! Will make his third start of the year for HOF trainer Mott who’s looking for his 1st trip to the winner’s circle on the first Saturday in May.
9 Plus Que Parfait Walsh 30-1
Will be a BIG price. And rightfully so. But there are some things to consider. The KYJC is one of our favorite indicators for potential Derby success and this guy just missed in the slop that day. But then he faced WOW at Fair Grounds twice without showing much. Leparoux gave up on him after three tries. As a head-scratcher, won the UAE Derby in last. Will have to come from the clouds to have any chance.
10 Cutting Humor Pletcher 30-1
Another jump in the Sunland Derby and he’s outside looking into the big one on May 4. Broke his maiden during the GPW meet before the top runners descend on Gulfstream Park for the regular meet. Was favorite in the Southwest and got dusted by some of the lesser talents but it’s Pletcher, so he’s got ability but just not enough to keep Velazquez interested.
11 Haikal McLaughlin 30-1
Will be his first trip away from the Big Apple where he won the Gotham two back to get on the board for a possible Derby start. Made his first start beyond a mile LTO in the Wood when taken too far back. But that’s his style. And as previously said, the Wood is not our favorite Derby prep. Deep closer who will have plenty of traffic trouble to overcome.
12 SCR Omaha Beach Mandella 4-1
Started career on turf so it was no surprise when he trounced a small field of maidens going 7/8’s in the slop at Santa Anita. But when he won the Rebel by a nose over theretofore early Derby favorite and BC Juvenile winner Game Winner carrying HOF jockey Mike Smith he became more interesting. Won the Arkansas Derby LTO when aided by the slop and Smith sticks with him over the Baffert runners.
13 Code of Honor McGaughey 15-1
Velasquez could have stuck with either of the Pletcher runners but chose this guy who was third behind the 70-1 runner-up maiden in the Florida Derby. Sure we can toss the Sunland Derby winner Cutting Humor. But the Louisiana Derby runner-up Spinoff would have been a good sign for By My Standards fans had Johnny V landed on him. This is a wide open Derby and offers plenty of chance for a BIG score. Velasquez is sending signals that the Florida Derby winner Maximum Security’s race was much better than he’s being given credit for and this guy could help explode the ticket.
14 Win Win Win Trombetta 15-1
Win, win, win is what he did in three of his first four races when sprinting. Joined the Derby trail in Tampa as the favorite over Tacitus and rallied into third too late to get to the winner. Troubled trip LTO in the Blue Grass left him with too much to do down the stretch and couldn’t catch Vekoma who had already opened up down the lane. Ortiz Jr. departs for the Arkansas Derby runner-up so this guy probably falls somewhere in the second group of ten with a shot. Not grandsires on both sides won the Kentucky Derby and if you like Vekoma on your ticket this guy is a must use.
15 Master Fencer Trombetta 50-1
What’s there to say?
16 Game Winner Baffert 5-1
Kind of reminds me of Gun Runner. By the same sire, Gun Runner also won 4 of his first 5 races, but on Derby Day he finished third when he had to go an extra 1/8. This guy added ground in the SA Derby last time out and came up a 1/2 length short beaten by previously mentioned stablemate Roadster. Post position, start, and positioning by Rosario will be key to his success – which can’t be handicapped. His best BRIS speed figure 103 came at Churchill when he won the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile on his way to 2YO champ. But the fact that he’s come up a tad short in his last two and the added distance puts him somewhere on the ticket but not likely at the top.
17 Roadster Baffert 6-1
After maiden win at first asking last summer, he was considered Baffert’s next now horse. Was put away for six months for further development after failing as the heavy favorite in next outing won by eventual BC Juvenile winner and stablemate Game Winner. Opened ’19 with easy win at $0.90 on the dollar vs. four others – but was not the favorite. Not to perpetuate a conspiracy theory (there’s plenty of fans commenting at other venues) but what does it say when he makes four starts with Mike Smith up including a win in the Santa Anita Derby last time (a race he absolutely had to win to get the necessary KD points) over stablemate Game Winner who already had enough points — and now Mike Smith has elected to ride elsewhere? I have my take on it but will let you decide for yourself whether Roadster won the SA Derby fair and square. But what I will say is that Smith’s departure speaks volumes about what he thinks this guy’s chances are in the Derby.
18 Long Range Toddy Asmussen 30-1
A closer look at this guy leaves me scratching my head how he was able to beat Improbable two back in the Rebel. His four wins are tied for most with Maximum Security but he’s not nearly an equal competitor. Has tactical speed to get position in a less crowded field but his style doesn’t fit what will be necessary to stalk and pounce in here.
19 Spinoff Pletcher 30-1
Looked like the winner in deep stretch at Fair Grounds in their feature but got a little tired late and nabbed at the wire when By My Standards upped his game. This horse needed that race but the fact that Johnny V. goes elsewhere says this guy needs a little more time. Still, depending on his post, he’ll bring plenty of pressure on the front-end as his sire Hard Spun made them all run in 2007 but could never finish first at the classic distances.
20 Country House Mott 30-1
Started career on turf going 1 1/16 first time out at Belmont. Broke his maiden as the heavy favorite vs. five others in third start at Gulfstream at same distance. Has been competitive in each of his graded tries and gets his fifth different rider. Exits the Hot Springs highlight behind probable favorite Omaha Beach when third. Toss that sloppy try and give him a shot for deep tickets.
21 Bodexpress Delgado 30-1
Not sure what to make of this guy. He was a 70-1 maiden vs. winners in the Florida Derby and he showed up BIG, following Maximum Security all the way around the track in second. Maximum Security is a legit contender — especially with the departure of Omaha Beach. Do I think this horse can repeat his Florida Derby effort? No.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.