©2017 Calvin L. Carter. All rights reserved.
On Sunday, the European road to the 2017-2018 Kentucky Derby (G1) takes us to Chantilly Racecourse in Chantilly, France where the Godolphin runners MASARand MYTHICAL MAGIC have been tabbed as the 3-5 Twinspires.com morning line favorite in the Group One Qatar Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère. Of that pair, I like Masar the best.
Masar comes into this race with a 2-0-1 record in three starts for trainer Charles Appleby including a win by two lengths in the BetBright Solario Stakes (Group 3) at Sandown on September 2. Here’s the video and chart call:
MASAR tracked leaders, led over one furlong out, ridden inside final furlong, kept on well.
New Approach, the sire of Masar, is a Classic Champion Thoroughbred and multiple Group Stakes winner that compiled an 8-2-1 record in 11 starts with $3,885,308 in career earnings.
As a two year old, New Approach was undefeated in five of his starts including four Group Stakes: Tyros Stakes (Group 3), Galileo E.B.F. Futurity Stakes (Group 2), Bank of Scotland National Stakes (Group 1) and the Darley Dewhurst Stakes (Group 1).
At the age of three, New Approach placed in three Group Stakes races and won the Vodafone Epsom Derby (Group 1), Tattersalls Millions Irish Champion Stakes (Group 1) and the Emirates Airline Champion Stakes (Group 1).
As a stallion, New Approach has sired numerous Group Stakes winners including the Classic Champion Thoroughbred, Dawn Approach (2,000 Guineas).
Masar has an A+ Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile® and I look for him to run a good race.
HAPPILY (5-2) comes into this race with a 3-1-0 record in five starts for trainer Aiden O’Brien including a win by a nose last out in the Molyglare Stud Stakes (Group 1) at the Curragh on September 10. Here’s the video and chart call of that race:
HAPPILY broke well to lead early until soon headed and settled behind leader, third after one furlong, ridden two furlongs out and pressed winner in second entering final furlong, kept on well under pressure inside final furlong to lead final strides.
Galileo, the sire of Happily, is a Classic Champion Thoroughbred and multiple Group Stakes winner that compiled a 6-1-0 record in eight starts with $2,245,373 in career earnings.
Galileo made only one start as a two year old, easily winning by an impressive 14 lengths.
As a three year old, Galileo won his season debut in the Ballysax Stakes. He followed that with his first Group win in the Derrinstown Stud Derby Trail Stakes (Group 3). Galileo then earned classic honors with wins in the Vodafone Epsom Derby (Group 1) and the Budweiser Irish Derby (Group 1). His last group stakes win was in the King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Diamond Stakes (Group 1).
As a stallion, Galileo currently leads the Top sires of European Stakes winners list with 68 Group One winners and, except for 2010, that’s an honor he’s held since 2009.
Galileo has sired numerous Classic Champion Thoroughbreds: Frankel (2,000 Guineas), Australia (Derby), Ruler Of The World (Derby), Magician (Irish 2,000 Guineas), Gleneagles (2,000 Guineas, Irish 2,000 Guineas), The Gurkha (French 2,000 Guineas), Churchill (2,000 Guineas, Irish 2,000 Guineas), Roderic O’Connor (Irish 2,000 Guineas), Treasure Beach (Irish Derby), Capri (Irish Derby, St. Leger), Soldier Of Fortune (Irish Derby), Order Of St George (Irish St. Leger), Cape Blanco (Irish Derby), Sixties Icon (St. Leger) and New Approach (Derby).
Happily, a full sister to the classic miler, Gleneagles, also has an A+ Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile® and she’s the best bred horse in this herd. I look for her to run well.
A long shot I like in this race is WOODMAX (50-1). To date he’s compiled a 2-0-0 record in three starts for trainer Nicolas Clement including a one length win in the Prix Pharamond Conditions Stakes at Maisons-Lafitte on September 20. Here’s the video and chart call of that race:
WOODMAX waited with in final pair on outer, angled out and began to close well over 1½ furlongs out, ridden to challenge over one furlong out, led entering final furlong, driven out, readily.
Maxios, the sire of Woodmax, was a multiple Group Stakes winner that compiled an 8-2-0 record in 18 starts with $935,961 in career earnings.
As a two year old, Maxios won his maiden debut and followed that with a win in the Prix Thomas Bryon (Group 3). At the age of three, Maxios was unplaced in four starts.
As a four year old, Maxios notable stakes win was in the La Coupe de Maisons-Lafitte (Group 3). At the age of five, Maxis won the Prix d’Harcourt (Group 2), Prix d’Ispahan (Group 1) and the Qatar Prix du Moulin de Longchamp (Group 1).
Woodmax has an A Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile® and he has the breeding to be competitive in this race.
This is the sixth consecutive year for Churchill Downs to use a point system to determine eligibility to get into the Kentucky Derby starting gate. A total of 36 races comprise the Road to the Kentucky Derby and a significant change to the schedule is the addition of the Springboard Mile at Remington Park on December 17.
In addition to the Japan road to the Derby which features the Cattleya Sho Stakes (November 25), Zen-Nippon Nisai Yushan Stakes (December 13) and Hayacinth Stakes (February 2018), Churchill Downs has added a European road to Derby glory consisting of seven races: Juddmonte Beresford (September 24), Juddmonte Royal Lodge (September 30), Qatar Prix Jean-Luc Lagardère (October 1), Racing Post Trophy (October 28, Road to the Kentucky Derby Condition Stakes (March 1), Patton (March 2) and the Burradon (March 30).
EUROPEAN ROAD LEADERBOARD
Ranking, total points, Trainer
1. Saxon Warrior (JPN), 10, Aidan O’Brien
1. Roaring Lion (USA), 10, John Gosden
3. Delano Roosevelt (IRE), 4, Aidan O’Brien
3. Nelson (IRE), 4, Aidan O’Brien
5. Warm the Voice (IRE), 2, Brendan Duke
5. Mildenberger (ENG), 2, Mark Johnston
7. Kew Gardens (IRE), 1, Aidan O’Brien
7. Petrus (IRE), 1, Brian Meehan
2017/2018 KENTUCKY DERBY LEADERBOARD
Ranking, total points, Trainer
1. The Tabulator, 10, Larry Rivelli
2. Hollywood Star, 4, Dale Romans
3. Ten City, 2, Ken McPeek
4. Ebben, 1, Steve Margolis