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Home - - January 1, 1970 Forums Horse Racing Picks - - January 1, 1970 2019 KENTUCKY DERBY ANALYSIS – APRIL 16, 2019 - - January 1, 1970

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    consensus Choice
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    SATURDAY MAY 4, 2019

    Well the preps are over and now it is time to decide what we have witnessed and come up with a thoughtful analysis that we can use in betting this year’s Kentucky Derby.

    Omaha Beach has certainly risen to the head of the class by beating Baffert’s highly regarded Game Winner and Improbable in the Rebel and the Arkansas Derby. Even more impressive is way he accomplished these feats. He has a versatile running style, seems to be trouble free, runs close enough to the pace to take over at the top of the stretch and most importantly keeps running all the way to the wire. It appeared Game Winner had him in the Rebel, until Omaha Beach dug in to win by a nose. His Arkansas Derby was even more impressive. It didn’t appear Improbable was going to get by him even if they went around again. This late developing Mandela horse, who doesn’t usually try the Derby trail, is the one to beat.

    Baffert seems to have the next three most serious challengers. The one who seems the biggest threat is the one who is the lightest raced, Roadster. His Santa Anita Derby win was very impressive.  I believe he may have the most upside. Improbable is being dismissed by many experts since he couldn’t close the deal in the Rebel or the Arkansas Derby, but he tries hard every time and I like his grit and determination. He made an impressive mid-race move in the Arkansas Derby to get into contention, something that will play well in the Derby. Game Winner, the 2 year-old champ seems to be over the top. He looked like he was going to blow by Omaha Beach in his division of the Rebel but fell a nose short. His Santa Anita Derby was even less impressive as he had to be hard ridden in the drive and couldn’t hold off Roadster.

    I don’t know what to make of Maximum Security. I usually am very eager to embrace the Florida Derby winner. I picked Barbaro (2006), Big Brown (2008), Orb (2013), Nyquist (2016), and Always Dreaming (2017) all based on their impressive Florida Derby triumphs. The Florida Derby is the most successful prep producing 24 Derby winners. But most of those winners had more foundation that Maximum Security. I am looking at the level of competition he had in the Florida Derby and based on that I think he may not be that special. I may be seriously underestimating him, but I am not buying it. The California horses have dominated recently, I’ll Have Another (2012), California Chrome (2014), American Pharoah (2015), and Justify (2018). I believe that is where the major talent is this year as well.

    I am not at all impressed by Tacitus (Wood), Vekoma (Blue Grass), By My Standards (Louisiana Derby) and not the runners-up although Win Win Win was flying at the finish in the Blue Grass so he might be a good reacher in the Derby Trifecta and Superfecta.

    That is the way I see the 2019 Kentucky Derby 18 days away from the best two minutes in sports.


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