2007 Kentucky Derby Analysis and Picks

May 5, 2007 by
Filed under: Triple Crown 

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The 133rd running of the Kentucky Derby promises to be a contentious affair between a mostly undistinguished field of twenty. Undistinguished in that these twenty runners have earned a grand total of nine triple-digit Beyer Speed Figures (BSF) this year. While the lack of gaudy speed figures may mean that there are no real superstars this year, this evenly matched field does provide an interesting handicapping challenge and should be facinating to watch.

On to the handicapping:

Step 1: Eliminate the Early runners

Review the Preview and Recap from last year’s Kentucky Derby. Horses with an Early running style have a dismal record in the past two 20-horse Kentucky Derbies. This means that Storm in May, Hard Spun, Liquidity, Teuflesberg and Nobiz Like Shobiz are all at a distinct disadvantage.

Also, eliminate Any Given Saturday as a Non-E-Type runners with last race Early Pace (EP) greater than the Kentucky Derby EP par.

Step 2: Eliminate horses that have not run a BSF of at least 98 this year.

In the past 15 years, only two horses (Giacomo and Sea Hero) have won the Kentucky Derby without having previously earned a BSF of at least 100.

Out: Sedgefield, Zanjero, Imawildandcrazyguy, Bwana Bull, Stormello, Dominican

Step 3: Eliminate horses without a 100+ BRIS Late Pace in their last race.

If you’re going to win the Kentucky Derby, you better be running in the stretch.

Out: Sam P. Scat Daddy

Step 4: Miscellaneous Eliminations

Cowtown Cat – Took advantage of a speed bias and slow early fractions to win the Illinois Derby. Seems to want to be forwardly placed but does not possess the quickness to accomplish it against this field.

Tiago – His win in the Santa Anita Derby was also the first time he’s crossed the finish line first. (He broke his maiden via DQ.) Negatives: Only a four race career. Could regress after a 16 point BSF jump last race. Running style from the SA Derby would have to overcome large field and sloppy track.

Great Hunter – Post 20. Need I go on? Positives: I am willing to throw out the oddly run Blue Grass Stakes. Although he didn’t beat much in the Robert Lewis Stakes, that running style would would have worked nicely here on a fast track. Negatives: Post 20. No bullet works. Will either have to push early to secure position or have to work through the whole field in the slop.

Step 5: Hard Decisions

Curlin – Positives: The only horse with two 100+ BSF races this year. Undefeated. Negatives: Only three career races. Unraced as a two-year-old. Didn’t beat much in Arkansas. No bullet works.

Circular Quay – Positives: Two wins and a place at Churchill Downs. Big win with strong stretch run in Louisiana Derby. Negatives: Eight week layoff. Unspectacular works. Will have to come from the back of the pack against a large field in the slop.

Street Sense – Positives: Won BC Juvenile on this track. Good workouts at CD. Should get perfect trip given post position and running style. Negatives: Only two races this year.

Thoroughbred Report Picks:

1st: #7 Street Sense
2nd: #16 Circular Quay

Include in exotics: #2 Curlin, #14 Scat Daddy, #18 Any Given Saturday, #20 Great Hunter

Kentucky Derby Wager

$40 Exacta 7-16 (Street Sense over Circular Quay)
$20 Exacta 16-7

$1 Triple Key 7,16 with 7,16 with 2,14,18,20 = $8
$1 Triple Key 7,16 with 2,14,18,20 with 7,16 = $8

$1 Super Key 7,16 with 7,16 with 2,14,18,20 with 2,14,18,20 = $24

Total Wager: $100

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