Keeler Johnson’s Kentucky Derby Top 10: Who’s On, Who’s Gone?

Tax winning the Withers Stakes (gr. III) at Aqueduct - Photo by NYRA/Adam Coglianese Photography/Joe Labozzetta Another week, another meaningful shake-up in my weekly Kentucky Derby Top 10. Following a somewhat disappointing series of Saturday prep races, I have chosen to drop Maximus Mischief and Gunmetal Gray from my list, while weekend winners Tax and Extra Hope are joining the fray for the first time. Here’s how they stack up with less than 90 days util the Kentucky [...]

Rating the First Round of 2019 Kentucky Derby Preps

Game Winner winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile (gr. I) - Coady Photography With the running of Sunday's Remington Springboard Mile, the last North American Kentucky Derby prep race of the year entered the history books, bringing to a close the first stage of qualification for the 2019 “Run for the Roses.” From September through December, nine Road to the Kentucky Derby prep races were conducted across the country, and while the majority offered the same number of qualification [...]

Watch Out, Game Winner: Improbable Impresses in Los Alamitos Futurity

Improbable winning the Los Alamitos Futurity (gr. I) - © Benoit Photo Question—which horse is the most talented two-year-old currently residing in the barn of Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert? Prior to the running of the December 8th Los Alamitos Cash Call Futurity (gr. I) at Los Alamitos, most racing fans would have quickly answered Game Winner, the three-time Grade 1 winner and probable champion two-year-old male of 2018. But then Baffert sent out Improbable to crush the [...]

Betting a Baffert Exacta in the Los Alamitos Futurity

Improbable winning the Street Sense Stakes - Coady Photography Just how many times has the Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert won the $300,000 Los Alamitos Futurity (gr. I), which will be renewed for the 38th time on December 8th? Well, technically, Baffert has never lost the Los Alamitos Futurity. Since the race was moved to Los Alamitos in 2014, Baffert has prevailed in every edition, and he also won the race six times during its glory days at [...]

Del Mar and Saratoga 2yos Analysis: Grade 1s Close Out the Meets

Instagrand winning the Best Pal Stakes (gr. II) at Del Mar - © BENOIT PHOTO Although we’re nearing the conclusions of the 2018 summer meets at Del Mar and Saratoga, there’s still plenty of top-notch juvenile racing still to come. In fact, the meets are going to end with a bang in that respect! Saturday will see fillies take the stage in the Del Mar Debutante (gr. I) at Del Mar and the Spinaway Stakes (gr. I) at [...]

Del Mar 2yos Analysis: Bellafina Impresses, Instagrand Steps Up

Bellafina winning the Sorrento Stakes (gr. II) at Del Mar - © BENOIT PHOTO Bellafina didn’t really look like a star in the making when she finished second in her debut at Los Alamitos last month. But boy, she presented an entirely different appearance in the $200,000 Sorrento Stakes (gr. II) on Sunday at Del Mar! The Sorrento, an early prep race on the road to the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (gr. I), was the top juvenile race [...]