Why I’m Betting Bandua in the Dueling Grounds Derby

Photo courtesy of Kentucky Downs There are plenty of talented horses entered in Sunday's $400,000 Exacta Systems Dueling Grounds Derby at Kentucky Downs, but to be perfectly honest, I never seriously considered picking anyone but #6 Bandua to win. My reasoning is simple. Kentucky Downs, thanks to its undulating European-style turf course, is quite unlike any other racetrack in North America. Some horses relish the challenge, while others struggle over the unusual conditions. Then there’s the fact that the [...]

Analyze It Faces International Challengers in Secretariat Stakes

Analyze It winning the Transylvania Stakes (gr. III) - Keeneland Photo It’s not hard to imagine that Analyze It will feel a sense of relief when he heads to the starting gate for Saturday’s $400,000 Secretariat Stakes (gr. I) at Arlington Park and realizes that, for once, he will not be joined by Catholic Boy. Analyze It is a head and a neck away from being undefeated in five starts, with those narrow losses coming against Catholic Boy [...]

Juveniles take center stage at Churchill Downs

Mia Mischief wins her maiden impressively at Keeneland Oct. 8. Photo: Coady Photography.   Thoroughbred racing’s immediate future – and some probable future Kentucky Derby contenders – head to Churchill Downs Oct. 29 for a day of galloping devoted to 2-year-olds. Eleven races are on the card, and all are for juveniles only. The Street Sense Stakes heads the card, but there are three other important races: the Rags to Riches Stakes for 2-year-old fillies, and two $200,000 [...]

Even Field Contests Dixiana Bourbon Stakes

Punters will have few more challenging tasks at Keeneland this weekend than trying to sort out the Dixiana Bourbon Stakes (G3). A full field of 14 is set to contest the 1 1/16-mile contest for 2-year-olds on turf. It’s a Breeders’ Cup Challenge race, earning the winner automatic entry into the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf. Few black type races are held on turf in the United States prior to September, and the vast majority of the field has had no [...]