Chalk Blizzard: Road to Kentucky Contest Week 7 Recap

Mohaymen

“The race is not always to the swift nor the battle to the strong, but that’s the way to bet.” – Damon Runyon, American newspaperman and writer (1880-1946)

We were back to Gulfstream Park last Saturday for the Road to Kentucky Week 7 contest.  The Kentucky Derby prep race of the day was the Fountain of Youth Stakes, featuring top Derby contender Mohaymen.  We had seen Mohaymen already this year when he delivered a dominant victory in the Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park four weeks earlier, and he responded again with an authoritative victory in the Fountain of Youth, defeating a game Zulu and leaving the others far behind.

If you were playing longshots in the contest last week as I did, it was a funeral procession.  Favorites dominated the card, winning 8 of 13 races with several of those being odds-on romps.  Four of the other five races were won by horses returning 3-1 or less.  The maximum score this week was 1,987 points, so you can see that over 13 races we were averaging about 150 points per race.  The key horse to select this week was the lone price horse in the sequence named Faufiler (IRE) in Race 9, who received a brilliant ride by Edgar Prado to save ground from the 13 post into the first turn, and then exploded from last to first in the stretch to win going away at 12-1.  Find that winner and mix in some logical favorites and that is the recipe for success this week.

I try not to be in the dream dashing business, but I do have personal knowledge of an excellent score posted last week of 1,278 points.  That’s 64% of the maximum available, which would be a weekly winner about 95% of the time in my opinion.  So that’s the target for this week and anything above 1,200 would really have a good chance at a top five score.  I checked in with 210 points so I’m not in victory lap mode this week, I’m just watching the pomp and circumstance from the sidelines.

The top two Kentucky Derby contenders, Mohaymen and Nyquist, are set to hook up in the Florida Derby in their next start.  What an unusual situation to have two top runners face off this early, but Nyquist is gunning for $1 million bonus for going through the Fasig-Tipton sale and then winning the Florida Derby.  Meanwhile, Mohaymen is already training at Gulfstream Park so the connections aren’t changing their plans either at this point.  I still think there’s a chance Mohaymen may defer and go elsewhere, perhaps the Wood Memorial, to avoid too taxing a race right before the Kentucky Derby.

This Saturday the contest track is Aqueduct and the bonus race is the Gotham Stakes.  Hope to see you at Canterbury Park!

The Oracle

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