Churchill Downs Single 6 Jackpot: The filly to single Saturday

Magic Dance winning her debut at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography The Single 6 Jackpot went unclaimed Friday at Churchill Downs, leaving a huge carryover pool of $327,613 to be dispersed Saturday. On days like these, when a mandatory dispersal of a jackpot pool is on the agenda, it’s wise for bettors to shift their strategy a bit. It’s no longer necessary to scour the card for potential longshots winners in hopes of holding the lone winning ticket—in [...]

Spot plays for the Debutante, Bashford Manor and more

Magic Dance winning her debut at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography The 2019 Churchill Downs spring meet wraps up Saturday, with a 12-race card that features three stakes races. Juveniles will take the spotlight in the $125,000 Debutante Stakes and $125,000 Bashford Manor Stakes (G3), while older sprinters will shine in the $120,000 Kelly’s Landing Stakes. Let’s put together a few spot plays for the stakes races. Race 8: Kelly’s Landing Stakes #8 Warrior’s Club looms as the [...]

4 Racing Storylines to Follow in Summer 2019

Newspaperofrecord winning the Breeders' Cup Juvenile Fillies Turf (G1) - Coady Photography With the Kentucky Derby complete and the spring racing season well underway, I’m already looking ahead to some of the great racing action we can expect to see this summer. The 13 graded stakes races held at Churchill Downs on Derby week produced some interesting storylines to keep an eye on during the second half of the year. Here are just a few of my main [...]

Patience Pays Off, She’s a Julie Wins La Troienne

She's a Julie winning the La Troienne Stakes (G1) - Coady Photography She wasn’t the favorite—three rivals started at shorter prices—but when push came to shove, She’s a Julie was indisputably the best filly in the $500,000 La Troienne Stakes (G1) on Kentucky Oaks Day at Churchill Downs. She’s a Julie is a perfect example of a horse who needed time to mature before reaching peak form. After winning her debut as a 2-year-old at Churchill Downs, the [...]

Mia Mischief Wins Humana Distaff with Rapid Mid-Race Move

Mia Mischief winning the Humana Distaff (G1) - Coady Photography Mia Mischief has always shown talent, but on racing’s biggest days she’s had trouble delivering on her potential. But everything changed on Kentucky Derby Day, when Mia Mischief delivered a dominant victory in the $500,000 Humana Distaff (G1) going seven furlongs at Churchill Downs, the first top-level win of her career. Considering the manner in which she prevailed, additional grade 1 wins could well be in her future. Disregarded [...]

Watch Out, Roy H: Mitole Impresses in Churchill Downs Stakes

Mitole winning the Churchill Downs Stakes (G1) - Coady Photography It’s safe to say the transformation of Mitole from a promising youngster into one of the nation’s leading sprinters was rendered complete during the $500,000 Churchill Downs Stakes (G1) on Kentucky Derby Day at Churchill Downs. In the span of 1:21.21, Mitole lived up to the promise he’s shown since 2018 and gave notice he’ll be a force to reckon with this season. Trained by Steve Asmussen, the [...]

How to Bet the Quality Derby Week Maiden Races at Churchill Downs

The Twin Spires at Churchill Downs - Coady Photography The Kentucky Derby, Kentucky Oaks and 11 other graded stakes races are the obvious highlights at Churchill Downs this week, but racing’s future will also be on display in a series of quality maiden special weight races. Across Friday and Saturday, five special weight events—three on dirt, two on turf—will be conducted over a variety of distances. The participants might be winless, but these competitive races could serve as springboards [...]

How to Bet the Steve Sexton Mile Stakes

Chances are strong a new graded stakes winner will emerge in Sunday’s $300,000 Steve Sexton Mile Stakes (G3) at Lone Star Park. Only one starter in the ten-horse field—#10 Shotgun Kowboy—has ever broken through at the graded level, but the 7-year-old gelding is a 12-1 shot on the morning line. He has finished no better than third in his last five starts, including three allowance races at Oaklawn Park this year. Can Shotgun Kowboy rebound to his winning form? Possibly—he [...]

2019 Kentucky Derby: Trainers, Facts and Trends

Bode Baffert (and Mike Smith) holds up the Derby trophy as his father, trainer Bob Baffert (second from left), enjoys the moment after Justify won the 144th running of the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs (Skip Dickstein/Times Union) Some of the best-known trainers in North American horse racing will be represented by major contenders in the 2019 Kentucky Derby, but as usual, the “Run for the Roses” will make room for a few newcomers as well. Sixteen different [...]

Long Range Toddy Catches Improbable in Rebel Stakes Division 1

Long Range Toddy winning the Rebel Stakes (gr. II) - Coady Photography He was favored at 2-5 and ran a good race, but when the real running began in the first division of the $750,000 Rebel Stakes (gr. II) at Oaklawn Park, the previously undefeated Improbable came up short of expectations and fell to defeat at the hands of Long Range Toddy. Granted, Improbable faced some adversity in the 8.5-furlong Road to the Kentucky Derby prep race. The [...]