Friday, April 6, 2018

Wood Memorial Stakes Racing Roundup


©2018 Calvin L. Carter. All rights reserved.

This Saturday, from coast-to-coast, the Road to the Kentucky Derby enters the stretch drive with three marquee races on tap at New York, Kentucky and California. Winners of those races will each receive 100 qualifying points and a guaranteed spot in the Derby starting gate on the first Saturday in May.
At Aqueduct Racecourse in New York, ENTICED has been tabbed as the 6-5 morning-line favorite in the 94th running of the $750,000 Wood Memorial Stakes (G2). Post Time is 5:55 p.m. Live television coverage of the three races will be broadcast on the NBC Sports Network from 5:30-7:30 p.m. ET.
Trained by Kiaran McLaughlin, Enticed will go to the starting gate with a 3-0-1 record in five starts including a win in the Gotham Stakes (G3) last out. Here’s the video and chart call of the that race:

ENTICED shook off light contact to take up position in mid-pack after the start, got stacked five wide approaching the conclusion of the backstretch, picked up speed when let out a notch and improved position so as to work out a tuck closer to the rail a furlong later, arrived at the end of the bend as the main danger to the runner up, was turned loose entering the stretch, readily chopped away at the deficit, began to drift out leaving the eighth pole, yet collared OLD TIME REVIVAL, itself drifting out slightly, in the vicinity of the sixteenth pole, kicked clear, then completed the final seventy yards getting geared down.

Enticed took a step forward off a fourth-place finish in his season debut to win by 2¾ lengths over Old Time Revival (6-1) who is also entered in this race.
Medaglia d’Oro, the sire of Enticed, was a good middle-distance runner that compiled an 8-7-0 record in 17 starts with $5,754,720 in career earnings. Overall, he had seven wins and five second-place finishes in 14 route races.
Medaglia d’Oro finished second in his only start as a two-year-old but as a three-year-old he won the San Felipe Stakes (G2) and finished second in the Wood Memorial Stakes (G1) in route to the 2002 Derby where he finished in fourth place.
In the Preakness Stakes (G1), Medaglia d’Oro finished eighth but rebounded from that run to finish second in the Belmont Stakes (G1). He went on to complete his racing season as a three-year-old with wins in the nine-furlong Jim Dandy Stakes (G2) and the 10-furlong Travers Stakes (G1).
As a four-year-old, Medaglia d’Oro won the nine-furlong Strub Stakes (G2), Oaklawn Handicap (G2) and Whitney Handicap (G1). In addition, he finished second in the 10-furlong Pacific Classic Stakes (G1) and Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).
At the age of five, Medaglia d’Oro won the nine-furlong Donn Handicap (G1) and finished second in the 10-furlong Emirates Airline Dubai World Cup (G1).
Enticed has an A Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile® and I look for him to run a good race.
A long shot I like in this race is KING ZACHARY (20-1) who come into this race with a 1-0-2 record in three starts including a maiden win for trainer Dale Romans. Here’s the video and chart call of that race:

KING ZACHARY hopped slightly still breaking near the lead then raced three wide entering the first turn, settled nicely under rider’s command sitting just off early leader YESUS STAR adding some outside pressure before shaking off rival near five eighths pole, inched up closer reaching equal terms with NEW LEGEND three furlongs out, shook the reins, responded opening up to clear advantage turning for home, continued to pull away along inside while ridden out.

In his third start, King Zachary looked good breaking his maiden by an impressive 7¾ lengths.
Curlin, the sire of King Zachary, was an outstanding racehorse that compiled an 11-2-2 record in 16 career starts with $10,501,800 in career earnings.
Curlin did not start as a two-year-old. But, at the age of three, Curlin was 6-1-2 in nine starts with $5,102,800 in earnings including wins in the Rebel Stakes (G3) and Arkansas Derby (G2) en route to a third-place finish in the 2007 Kentucky Derby (G1). He went on to win the Preakness Stakes (G1) and he finished second in the Belmont Stakes (G1).
Other important stakes wins include the Breeders' Cup Classic (G1), Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), twice, Dubai World Cup (G1), Stephen Foster Handicap (G1), Woodward Stakes (G1), and the UAE Jaguar Trophy Handicap.
In his first five crops as a stallion, Curlin has sired the 2013 Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Palace Malice and the 2016 Preakness Stakes (G1) winner Exaggerator. In addition, Curlin produced the classic-placed runners Ride On Curlin (second, 2014 Preakness), Keen Ice (third, 2015 Belmont) and Irish War Cry (second, 2017 Belmont).
King Zachary, a chestnut colt by Curlin out of On My Way by Giant’s Causeway, was a colt we profiled as a yearling (Hip 956) at the 2016 Keeneland September sale. With an A Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile®, he has the breeding to be competitive and I look for him to make another step forward in the stretch out in distance.
VINO ROSSO (9-2) comes into this race with a 2-0-1 record in four starts including a fourth-place finish in the Tampa Bay Derby (G2). Here’s the video and chart call of that race:

VINO ROSSO was well placed close up inside, tracked the leaders while saving ground, was asked on the far turn and lacked a response, dropped back and then finished evenly.

On viewing his past two races, it looks to me that Vino Rosso does not handle turns well but when he runs on the straight he improves and makes up ground on the leaders.
Curlin, the sire of Vino Rosso, was an outstanding racehorse that compiled an 11-2-2 record in 16 career starts with $10,501,800 in career earnings.
Curlin did not start as a two-year-old. But, at the age of three, Curlin was 6-1-2 in nine starts with $5,102,800 in earnings including wins in the Rebel Stakes (G3) and Arkansas Derby (G2) en route to a third-place finish in the 2007 Kentucky Derby (G1). He went on to win the Preakness Stakes (G1) and he finished second in the Belmont Stakes (G1).
Other important stakes wins include the Breeders' Cup Classic (G1), Jockey Club Gold Cup (G1), twice, Dubai World Cup (G1), Stephen Foster Handicap (G1), Woodward Stakes (G1), and the UAE Jaguar Trophy Handicap.
In his first five crops as a stallion, Curlin has sired the 2013 Belmont Stakes (G1) winner Palace Malice and the 2016 Preakness Stakes (G1) winner Exaggerator. In addition, Curlin produced the classic-placed runners Ride On Curlin (second, 2014 Preakness), Keen Ice (third, 2015 Belmont) and Irish War Cry (second, 2017 Belmont).
Vino Rosso is a colt we profiled as a yearling (Hip 528) at the 2016 Keeneland September sale. With an A Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile®, he has the breeding to be competitive and I also look for him to improve in the stretch out in distance.
RESTORING HOPE (4-1) comes into this race for Hall of Fame Trainer Bob Baffert with 1-1-1 record in three starts including a maiden win last out at Santa Anita Park. Here’s the video and chart call of that race:

RESTORING HOPE had speed outside then angled in and dueled alongside the runner up, took the lead into the stretch, inched away a sixteenth out and pulled clear under urging.

Restored Hope shadowed the leader, Longden, to the far turn when he pulled away in the stretch to easily win by 3½ lengths.
Giant’s Causeway, the sire of Restoring Hope, was undefeated in three starts as a 2-year-old, including wins in the Group 3 Futurity Stakes and the Group 1 Prix de la Salamandre Stakes, all at 7-furlongs.
As a three-year-old, Giant’s Causeway raced 10 times and won five Group One races including the Irish Champion Stakes, International Stakes, Sussex Stakes, St. James’s Palace Stakes, Eclipse Stakes and he won the Group 3 Gladness Stakes. He also finished second in four races: Queen Elizabeth II Stakes, 2,000 Guineas Stakes, Irish 2,000 Guineas and he finished second by a narrow neck to Tiznow in the 2000 Breeders’ Cup Classic.
Overall, Giant’s Causeway compiled a 9-4-0 record in 13 starts, winning from 7- to 10-furlongs, and he was the 2000 Cartier Racing Awards European Horse of the Year.
Restoring Hope has an A Classic Champion Thoroughbred Profile® and he has room to improve in his second start of the season.
Honorable mention goes to Old Time Revival (6-1), Catch Twenty Two (50-1) and Firenze Fire (6-1). Old Time Revival was my long shot pick in the Gotham Stakes (G3).


*****

2018 KENTUCKY DERBY LEADERBOARD
Ranking, total points, Trainer, Non-Restricted Stakes Earnings

1. Audible, 110, Todd Pletcher, $803,520
2. Noble Indy, 110, Todd Pletcher, $640,000
3. Mendelssohn, 100, Aidan O’Brien, $1,947,299
4. Bolt d’Oro, 64, Mick Ruis, $780,000
5. Enticed, 63, Kiaran McLaughlin, $360,880
6. Bravazo, 54, D. Wayne Lukas, $349,913
7. Promises Fulfilled, 52, Dale Romans, $256,480
8. Magnum Moon, 50, Todd Pletcher $$540,000
9. Runaway Ghost, 50, $520,310
10. Quip, 50, Rodolphe Brisset, $212,000
11. Lone Sailor, 42, Tom Amoss, $273,347
12. f-Rayya, 40, Doug Watson, $600,000
13. Hofburg, 40, Bill Mott, $192,000
14. +Good Magic, 34, Chad Brown, $1,200,000
15. +Solomini, 34, Bob Baffert, $616,000
16. My Boy Jack, 32, Keith Desormeaux, $502,000
17. Flameaway, 30, Mark Casse, $472,260
18. Firenze Fire, 29, Jason Servis, $582,500
19. +Free Drop Billy, 24, Dale Romans, $497,200
European Road Qualifier
20. Gronkowski, 50, Jeremy Noseda, $79,496
+ = Horses we picked as yearlings at the 2016 Keeneland September Yearling Sale. Good Magic = Eclipse Champion Two Year Old Male. McKinzie is off the Derby trail with and injury.


EUROPEAN ROAD LEADERBOARD
Ranking, total points, Trainer, Non-Restricted Stakes Earnings

1. *GRONKOWSKI, 50, Jeremy Noseda, $79,496
2. *MENDELSSOHN, 20, Aidan O’Brien, $1,947,299
3. Saxon Warrior (JPN), 20, Aidan O’Brien, $245,017
4. Roaring Lion (USA), 14, John Gosden, $136,807
5. Iconic Sunset (GB), 12, James Tate, $30,139
6. f-Happily (IRE), 10, Aidan O’Brien, $543,648
7. *THREEANDFOURPENCE, 8, Aiden O’Brien, $54,076
8. Court House (IRE), 8, John Gosden, $0
9. Dark Acclaim, 6, Marco Botti, $21,854
10. *SEAHENGE, 4, Aiden O’Brien, $145,630
11. Olmedo (FR), 4, Jean-Claude Rouget, $113,505
12. Nelson (IRE), 4, Aidan O’Brien, $99,826
13. Delano Roosevelt (IRE), 4, Aidan O’Brien, $38,074
14. Fortune’s Pearl (IRE), 4, Andrew Balding, $1,800
15. Purser, 3, John Gosden, $19,215
16. Masar (IRE), 2, Aidan O’Brien, $101,264
17. The Pentagon (IRE), 2, Aidan O’Brien, $71.981
18. Mildenberger (ENG), 2, Mark Johnston, $64,634
20. Warm the Voice (IRE), 2, Brendan Duke, $12,904
          *Mendelssohn, Gronkowski, Threeandfourpence and Seahenge are only horses nominated for Triple Crown. Here’s the video of Mendelssohn’s win in the Patton Stakes. Here’s the video of Gronkowski’s win in the Conditions Stakes.


JAPAN ROAD LEADERBOARD
Ranking, total points, Trainer, Non-Restricted Stakes Earnings

1. Sumahama (JPN), 30, Ryo Takahashi, $291,287
2. *RUGGERO (JPN), 16, Yuichi Shikato, $220,861
3. Taiki Ferveur, 12, Mitsunori Makiura, $299,689
4. Le Vent Se Leve (JPN), 10, Kiyoshi Hagiwara, $463,935
5. Don Fortis (JPN), 4, Mitsunori Makiura, $436,916
6. Mic Ben Hur (JPN), 4, Yoshihiro Hatakeyama, $122,696
7. Great Time (JPN), 3, Hideaki Fujiwara, $186,586
8. Haseno Pyro (JPN), 2, Kenki Sato, $263,981
9. Meiner Yukitsubaki (JPN) 2, Noboru Takagi, $151,796
10. Dark Repulser (JPN), 1, Takashi Kanari, $200,920
11. Bronze Kay (JPN), 1, Koichi Tsunoda, $75,979
*Ruggero is the only horse nominated for Triple Crown. Here’s the video of his last race, Hyacinth Stakes.

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