Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Murky Derby Picture

More upsets and longshots have further clouded the picture for the Kentucky Derby - it's anybody's race at this point. There are five grade-one preps in April that are supposed to highlight the strongest contenders, and none have been won by the favorite.

In reverse order, starting with yesterday's races:

19-1 shot Brilliant Speed took down the Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland yesterday, upsetting tepid favorite Santiva.

In an even bigger upset, Archarcharch came from behind to win the Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn at 25-1 (shown above). Derby contender The Factor was not a factor, finishing a well-beaten seventh at 4-5.

Last weekend, Uncle Mo, who everyone was talking about as the chosen one, sputtered home third in the Wood Memorial at Aqueduct. 9-1 shot Toby's Corner won, followed by 21-1 shot Arthur's Tale.

Also on April 9th, 14-1 shot Midnight Interlude beat weak favorite Silver Medallion in the Santa Anita Derby. Midnight Interlude had just won his first maiden special in March, and it was his third try.

The most formful of all these races was the Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park on April 3rd, where second choice Dialed In closed strongly to win at 3-1. Soldat, who was the favorite and widely considered to be a strong Derby hopeful came home a disappointing 5th.

I don't know about you, but I'm looking for that super-mega-bomb zillion-dollar longshot superfecta on Derby day. Then I'm going retire to a chalet in Europe and paint landscapes. If I don't hit it, I guess I'll just keep doing the stuff I do now.