“Race of the Week” is the GIII Cliff’s Edge Derby Trial Stakes!

It's Opening Day at Churchill Downs Saturday!

As it will be a slow weekend Graded Stakes-wise, there is one more pre-derby 3yo race to be run, in the GIII Cliff’s Edge Derby Trial Stakes for 3yo’s, going a 1-turn mile, for a purse of $200,000 on Churchill Downs opening day and all under the lights too!

No, a derby-contender hasn’t come out of this contest in a long while, but in times gone by this was the big derby prep of the season!

So lets look over these 9 charges who’ll be running in this year’s edition!

Free Past Performances” for all of this race’s nominees!

At 7/5 is Travelin Man, late of a big-time 7f sprint win at Gulfstream last month in the GII Swale Stake. He covered that ground in a very nice 1:21 and 4/5 for 7f’s but he will stretch out to the mile distance here for the first time! So he’s got the speed but will he carry the extra distance well, especially if the weather dampens an already wet Churchill Downs main track! He’s not a lock here but he’s real close, so exotics all around for him!

At 7/2 is JJ’s Lucky Train winner of the 7f, GIII  Bayshore Stakes at Aqueduct on “Wood” day! He has an impressive 5 wins over an 8 race career with a pair of 2nd’s to boot! JJ’s Lucky Train will not knock you over with blinding speed but he grinds along until you realize he is going to hit the board again. A off-track just might suit him fine on Saturday, so tri’s and supers for him!

At 9/2 is Indiano, a Indian Charlie son, who finished a coming 2nd in that Swale Stakes last month. If memory serves, he had a bit of stretch-traffic trouble that day, weaving his way to that 2nd place finish. Just liked the way he handled himself in that outing. So tri’s and supers make some sense here!

At 5/1 is the “Ragin Cajun” Machen who is coming off “2” less than stellar performances in the Fair Grounds two biggest Derby prep races. So perhaps, the shorter distance here will be more to his liking, but don’t trust to hope on this one. Supers only until he shows improvement!

At 8/1 is Indian Winter, another of Indian Charlie’s brats, this one didn’t fare well in the 1 1/8 mile Santa Anita Derby earlier this month, finishing 6th there, but in his outings previous to the S/A Derby they were all board hits with 2 wins, most notably a blazing fast 1:15.34 for 6 1/2 f’s in the San Pedro Stakes this last Jan. at Santa Anita! So he can go “toe to toe” with the best of them as long as they’re not going 2-turns! He could sneak-in for another board hit here on Saturday, so try him in your trifectas and supers too!

At 10/1 is Dominus, a Smart Strike child, has but 2 outings on his resume both board hits with a win at 7f’s in 1:22.61 over that very speedy Santa Anita main track last month! Don’t like his lack of racing experience here, especially over any slop and stepping up to the mile distance against this crowd gives us pause! So super him only!

At 20/1 are Beamer and Duca, and at 30/1 is B G Suavecito, all bringing up the rear here on Saturday’s card!

Beamer at 20/1 seems a bit off to us. He is out of the Seattle Slew and Unbridled lines, for starters, his connections are the “Street Sense” combo of Carl Nafzger, Jim Tafel and Mr. Calvin and with a pair of 4ths in Tampa Bay Downs 2 big derby prep’s, you’d think he would be getting, the Machen treatment, at least, here on Saturday. So super him up and do you really think Mr. Calvin isn’t going to try an make a “Derby Statement” with this one!

Duca was last seen running stride for stride with the ailing ? “Uncle Mo” on the clubhouse turn in the Wood Memorial earlier this month but then faded to 9th by the wire. He is a maiden only winner, so far, but he’s pedigree and connections are very good. Looking for that surprise upset for your supers, well if he is ready to run that big race, this is the place to do it!

B G Suavecito, son of Suave, is a two race lifetime runner. He did come 3rd to Archarcharch in the Sugar Bowl Stakes last Dec. and has an AOC win at 6f’s, both outings were at the Fairgrounds! Super him if you want but we won’t!

So we like Travelin Man to travel with JJ’s Lucky Train, Indiano and Indian Winter in our first-tier thinking of boxed exactas and tri’s and super up Dominus, Machen and Beamer!

So opening day at “The Downs” will actually be “opening night” as they will run this one, under the lights, and start off the meet with a good GIII, 1-mile, 3yo tussle that has much tradition to it. So if you are out and about at your favorite simulcasting outlet, check out this opening day/night tilt in Louisville!

A Kentucky Oaks video preview!

The Kentucky Derby isn’t the only game in Louisville next week, the Kentucky Oaks is also coming up too, on May the 6th.

So we thought a Video from the Triple Crown Insiders/Blood-Horse might wet your appetite for this $1 million contest.

This year’s field seems to be a full one with tons of talented 3yo Fillies!

So click here to see the full video!

Remember the PP’s for this race can be accessed right on top of this page and they’re free! So get your “Kentucky Oaks” handicapping going early this year!

Tips on how to be a “Kentucky Derby” winner!

   So you want to be a “Kentucky Derby” winner? Well who wouldn’t like to do just that!

Who won’t like to stroll up to a Churchill Downs teller’s window and cash that winning ticket of a lifetime!

Well we’ve got a few Kentucky Derby race day tips for you to ponder!

Tip #1  Use a “reverse-handicapping” technique!

“Reverse Handicapping” simply means you start your race handicapping by tossing out those horses with the longest odds! Why? well a Kentucky Derby field has 20 horses in it, the biggest field in all the world, I dare say, as at less half of them don’t have much of a real chance here.

They either had the bare minimum in Graded Stakes earning to make it here or got  into this race because another horse has dropped out!

Either way, it a very low percentage, so eliminate such low percentage runners first!

So Reverse-Handicapping is the best way to start to get a handle on such a large field!

Tip #2  Use as many horses as possible!

There’s no law saying you can only have just one pick here! Use several horses you might like just be sure the odds on any of them covers what you are laying out! No you won’t get rich doing this but your chances of cashing that Kentucky Derby winning ticket goes up dramatically.

Tip #3  If you’re going to play Exotics (wagers on exact finish order) we always recommend you “box” (meaning to have the right horses but in the wrong order and still win) all your plays.

The last thing you want to have happen is to have the right horses but in the wrong order on Derby Day. So spend the extra cash and box or be holding a very expensive piece of “note paper” in your hand at 6:05 pm on Derby Day!

Exactas should have at least 4 horses in them.

Trifectas– a minimum of 6 horses in cheat tri’s, say 50 cents or $1 versions.

Supers– Should be done with 7 or 8 different horses done over multiple 10-cent super plays.

Yes, the numbers of horses we are recommending here is very high, but this is a very large field and the risk needs to spread around! Also, the payouts on these wagers will be quite high.

Example: the super payout will probably be a 5-figured amount this year. So a 10-cent super win will net you a least $500! Nothing like have a “super” win in the Kentucky Derby everyone!

Tip #4 is more don’t then anything else!

  1. Don’t chase a bet gone wrong with another bet right on its heels on Derby day! Examine why your bad bet when wrong first and be honest about your handicapping on how you approached that race. Now adjust your thinking and move on! You can’t handicap correctly stewing over a lost!
  2. Have a “Mint Julep” or two but not “5 or 6”! Racetracks love drunken bettors!
  3. Don’t “solo” bet a favorite on big race days like this. Chances are every derby day race has any number of possible winners as all the fields will be quite filled with some very good horses!
  4. Don’t listen to race day “Gossip” or “Hot Tips” at the track as everyone has an opinion or a trick that “never misses“! Paddock chatter is extremely dangerous! Play it your way as your way just might be best!

For more on big race days like this, read our editorial on “Why big race days are wild and how to profit from them” we wrote a while back, it will help you understand big-time thoroughbred racing a bit better!

So remember to bring enough cash to have fun with, bring a friend or two and have a winning day. Hey, with just a bit of luck a “Kentucky Derby” winning ticket may be yours to cash!

“Game On” everyone!

J.P.s Gusto also out of derby consideration today!

Also today, the owner of J.P. Gusto (seen here)  Dr. John Waken ruled his 3yo out of consideration for this year’s Kentucky Derby. He stated, in a brief comment, that J.P.’s Gusto will be on his way back to N.Y. tonight!

So X J.P’s Gusto off your derby lists too!

Click “Here” to read more about this shocking development!

This brings Anthony’s Cross and Silver Medallion back into Derby consideration!