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 Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis
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Kentucky Derby Prep Races - 2014 Holy Bull Stakes Contenders

Yes, it's that time of year: time for the three-year-old stakes programs to kick off at GulfStream Park and other tracks across the country.

Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis Eleven three-year-old colts will line up in the starting gate at Gulfstream Park to contest the Holy Bull Stakes (Post time: 5:23 pm Eastern/TV: TVG & HRTV) on Saturday, January 25th, 2014 all of which are attempting to take a small but necessary first step towards the 2014 Kentucky Derby. The 140th Kentucky Derby is still a long ways off in terms of "horse racing time", but I suppose it's never too early to start taking stock of this season's crop of three-year-old colts. On the road to the roses at Churchill Downs on May 3rd, 2014 .

The Holy Bull isn't the first Kentucky derby "prep" race of the season, but given the extremely small field this years 2014 Sham Stakes at Santa Anita, and the fact that most of the other Kentucky derby prep races were run in 2013, this weekend seems like a good time to start ramping up the unofficial/official start to the road to the 2014 Kentucky Derby Prep Race Season on the Road to the 2014 Kentucky Derby.

Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis

Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis

Cairo Prince – heads this Kentucky Derby hopeful field for the GII Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park this Saturday 01/25/2014

The $400,000, GII Holy Bull Stakes, for 3yo’s, at 1 1 1/16 mile, over the Gulfstream main drew a huge field of 11, 3yo Kentucky Derby Hopefuls, as the serious business of separating the 3yo division gets underway here at Gulfstream this Saturday in this first important graded test of the 2014 Derby Trail season here at Gulfstream Park!

Free Past Performances,

Cairo Prince , by 2009 Derby runner-up in Pioneer of the Nile, comes in here off just a “nose” lose to Honor Code in last fall’s GII Remsen Stakes up at Aqueduct. He did have the stretch lead for all but the last few steps of that 2-turn tilt! He also has the GII Nashua Stakes title on this resume, as well! He’ll be the probable post time favorite as he actually is cutting back to the 1 1/16 mile distance here from his last out! Tends to stalk an early pace but as tends to be a bit premature in going to the lead. A solid exotics choice anyway!

Mr Speaker , by Pulpit and a Unbridled mare, won the GIII Dania Beach Stakes turfer here last out with a nice closing drive to win by 2 3/4 length in a very nice time of 1:36.4 for that turf mile. He has no dirt form on his resume but that not a minus as sometimes going turf to dirt works out just fine. Anyway, his on a 2-race winning streak with a graded win, love the blood lines and he has this distance twice in his career already and makes him another solid exotics choice for us!

Best Plan Yet , by Hear No Evil, was either 1st or 2nd in all of Calder’s big 2yo Stakes races last year but come up an awful 9th back almost 20 lengths in the Gulfstream Park Derby last out as he was all done by the 2nd call. He’ll still get a lot of play as a South Florida favorite son here on Saturday but is going to have to find more to be a part of the show at the end.

Financial Mogul , by Street Boss, was 2nd to Cairo Prince, in that GII Nashua Stakes last out just 2 lengths back at the line as he was closing in deep stretch.

Wicked Strong , by Hard Spun, was 3rd by just a 1/2 length in that same GII Remsen Stakes last out where he too was closing on the leaders in deep stretch. He had an erratic start but settled nicely in deep stretch, closing well on what I believe are the top derby contenders this year to date..!!!

Conquest Titan , by Birdstone, out of a Mineshaft mare, finished 13th in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile 2 back where he had the lead at the first call but faded from that point. He beat General A Rod in a Churchill $75k 1x Oc at a mile in 1:35.1 by 1 3/4 length after loosing his footing at start! Looking for a Belmont Stakes horse, here’s one you could consider right now! This one cries out for more distance, but you’ve gotta start you’re derby run somewhere!

Big Bazinga , by Bluegrass Cat out of a Maria’s Mon mare, was 2nd 2 back in the Woodbine GIII Grey Cup Stakes but faltered next out for a distant 7th finish in the GIII Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes on his first dirt try! A lot to hope for this one with his blood line but maybe he is not a dirt horse, we recommend caution here!

Intense Holiday , by Harlan’s Holiday out of a Unbridled’s Song mare, is a Todd Pletcher trained 3yo who was 5th in the GI Champagne Stakes, 4th in the GII Nashua stakes and 4th again in the GII Remsen Stakes in his last 3 outs! Let’s see now, a Todd Pletcher trained 3yo at the Gulfstream winter meet with top graded experiences and gets a Joel Rosario ride to boot, well, we’ll find a home for this one somewhere in our exotics thinking!

Almost Famous , by Unbridled’s Song, hopped up at the start of another Churchill $75k 1x Oc last out but still went wire to wire for a 6 lengths win covering that 1 1/16 mile tilt  in 1:44.4 way back on Nov 9th! Something of a layoff here for this one but he can go this distance but just might be an early speed here too!

Coup de Grace , by Tapit and Our Caravan , by Daaher, are both coming off good 2- turn performances over this strip in their last outs but might be something of cut below in here!

So, a truly solid field of 11, 3yo’s will go to post here at Gulfstream Park in this 10-4-2-1 Kentucky Derby Points test as $400,000, GII Holy Bull Stakes cranks up the graded 3yo season here this Saturday!

Race #10 – Post Time – 5:03 pm Est

PP Horse Jockey Weight Trainer
1. Coup de Grace J R Velazquez 116 C C Brown
2. Financial Mogul J L Ortiz 116 Violette, Jr.
3. Best Plan Yet E J Zayas 120 S I Gold
4. Almost Famous C H Borel 116 P B Byrne
5. Our Caravan C J Lanerie 116 M   Dilger
6. Mr Speaker J   Lezcano 120 McGaughey
7. Cairo Prince L   Saez 122 McLaughlin
8. Wicked Strong J   Castellano 116 J A Jerkens
9. Conquest Titan S   Bridgmohan 116 M E Casse
10 Big Bazinga J   Bravo 116 K   Vassilieva
11 Intense Holiday J   Rosario 116 T A Pletcher

Free Picks are –  Coming Soon- Exacta - Trifecta boxes, with the Super Play of the Day!


Here we go with this years 5th, 3 year old dance to the derby and many good horse players including myself will have a tough time on Saturday 01/25/14 picking the winner in this impressive and very completive Holy Bull Field . The Grade-2 Holy Bull Stakes is always set to be a very competitive 1 1/16 mile race run on dirt at Gulfstream Park, and this year is no exception with the winner of this group becoming a significant name to watch on the road to the Kentucky Derby. Cairo Prince is the name you will hear repeatedly and have to look out for this weekend but he's in deep here from top to bottom, so lets break it down and take a closer look at this Holy Bull group.

What: Holy Bull Stakes 
When: Saturday, January 25th, 2014 post time 5:03 Eastern 
Where: Gulfstream Park, Hallandale Beach, FL
Possible Picks: Wicked Strong, Conquest Titan, Mr. Speaker, Cairo Prince

Almost Famous had two wins in three 2013 starts, most recently coming in first in an allowance race at Churchill Downs in November. That race was at 1 1/16 miles, which means he can handle this distance, but now this colt has to handle a big step up in competition.

Big Bazinga didn’t have a great conclusion to 2013 as he was seventh in the Grade-3 Delta Downs Jackpot. That was his first start on dirt after a victory in a maiden race and a second in the Grade-3 Grey Stakes, both at Woodbine on a synthetic surface. This will be a very important race for Big Bazinga’s horse betting odds going forward on the Kentucky Derby trail.

Best Plan Yet started off 2014 with a ninth-place run in the non-graded Gulfstream Park Derby on New Year’s Day and now has three wins in seven starts. There were three months between his final 2013 start and his 2014 debut, so rust could have been an issue and Saturday should be a better gauge of where this colt is.

Cairo Prince will probably be the horse betting favorite in this event for sure after finishing second in the Grade-2 Remsen in November, and he has two wins and a second in three career starts. This will be his third graded-stakes race, so Cairo Prince has seen this type of competition before, I think actually better competition and a win here would put his name on the map as far as the Kentucky Derby prep trail goes.

Conquest Titan won an allowance race at Churchill Downs in late November, and he probably needed it for confidence after finishing 13th at the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Prior to that, Conquest Titan finished fifth in the Grade-1 Breeders’ Futurity, but that was on a synthetic surface; the allowance win was on dirt, but he’ll need to prove more on Saturday.

Coup de Grace will make his graded-stakes debut after wins in allowance and maiden races last year, but this will be his first race running over a mile. This race was run at a mile before going to 1 1/16 miles this year, so Coup de Grace’s closing kick will be something to watch.

Financial Mogul finished behind Cairo Prince in the Grade-2 Nashua in early November, and he has now has two top-four results in graded-stakes races. There are horses that are getting more attention than this colt, but Financial Mogul definitely has the speed to keep up. Like a few other horses, though, he has to run this distance for the first time.

Intense Holiday came in fourth in the Remsen and the Nashua, as well as fifth in the Grade-1 Champagne in October. The results aren’t great, but it shows that he has been in big-time races before, so Intense Holiday could be a horse betting underdog to watch on Saturday. After running 1 1/8 miles in the Remsen, 1 1/16 miles shouldn’t be an issue.

Mr. Speaker needed three attempts to break his maiden, then he won the Grade-3 Dania Beach at Gulfstream Park just before Christmas. However, he has only run on turf and the big Kentucky Derby prep races are run on dirt. Mr. Speaker has a lot of potential, but keep an eye on how he does on dirt this weekend.

Our Caravan won his debut, a maiden race in the middle of December, and it was run on dirt over 1 1/16 miles at Gulfstream Park. That shows he can do it, but now he has to repeat that feat against improved competition. If he does, that is another horse that will get into the Derby conversation.

Wicked Strong came in third in the Remsen, and he has finished third or better in three starts with a victory in a maiden race over a mile. This is his first trip to Gulfstream Park, but all three races have come on dirt, so at least he is used to the surface.

How It Will Play Out

There are some extremely talented horses in this field and there are a slew of contenders to pick from. However, Wicked Strong may earn the nod but will have to box four here, Possible Picks: Wicked Strong, Conquest Titan, Mr. Speaker, Cairo Prince.

Holy Bull Stakes Betting Strategies : Wicked Strong, Mr. Speaker with Cairo Prince - Conquest Titan

The Holy Bull is part of the 2014 Road to the Kentucky Derby points systems, with the top four finishers of the race receiving 10, 4, 2 and 1 points, respectively. Below are the entries and post positions for Saturday's Holy Bull Stakes. Morning line odds will be added when released.

Gulfstream Park - Saturday, January 25, 2014
Race 10 - 5:03 PM     $1 Daily Double / $1 Exacta / $.50 Trifecta / $.10 Superfecta
Purse $400,000. For Three Year Olds. ($15,000 bonus for FTBOA Registered Florida-Bred by an FTBOA Registered Florida Sire). Free nomination, $4,000 to pass the entry box and $2,000 additional to start, with $400,000 Guaranteed. All fees shall be paid prior to the startof the race. The owner of the winner to receive $240,000, $80,000 to second, $40,000 to third, $20,000 to fourth, $12,000 to fifth and $8,000 to sixth. Weight: 122 Lbs. Non-winners of a grade I or II stakes allowed, 2 Lbs.; of a sweepstakes at a mile orover, 4 Lbs.; of two races other than maiden or claiming at a mile or over, 6 Lbs. Horses finishing first, second or third in the Holy Bull will automatically be nominated to the Florida Derby. Trophy to the winning owner. Closed Saturday, January 11, 20014 with 44 Nominations. One And One Sixteenth Miles.
P# PP Horse Virtual
A/S Med Jockey Wgt Trainer M/L
1 1 Coup de Grace (KY) 3/C L J R Velazquez 116 C C Brown 4/1
2 2 Financial Mogul (KY) 3/C L J L Ortiz 116 R A Violette, Jr. 10/1
3 3 Best Plan Yet (FL) 3/C L E J Zayas 120 S I Gold 20/1
4 4 Almost Famous (KY) 3/C L C H Borel 116 P B Byrne 8/1
5 5 Our Caravan (KY) 3/C L C J Lanerie 116 M Dilger 15/1
6 6 Mr Speaker (KY) 3/C   J Lezcano 120 C R McGaughey III 5/1
7 7 Cairo Prince (KY) 3/C L L Saez 122 K P McLaughlin 3/1
8 8 Wicked Strong (KY) 3/C L J Castellano 116 J A Jerkens 8/1
9 9 Conquest Titan (KY) 3/C L S Bridgmohan 116 M E Casse 12/1
10 10 Big Bazinga (KY) 3/G L J Bravo 116 K Vassilieva 20/1
11 11 Intense Holiday (KY) 3/C L J Rosario 116 T A Pletcher 6/1
Breeders: 1 - AGS Thoroughbreds Ltd.; 2 - Atlas Farm et al; 3 - Jacks or Better Farm Inc.; 4 - Stonestreet Thoroughbred Holdings LLC; 5 - Hare Forest Farm, LTD.; 6 - Phipps Stable; 7 - Richard L. Elam & Katherine H. Elam; 8 - William F. Lynn; 9 - Michael Edward Connelly; 10 - Sheltowee Farm, Alfonso Mazzetti, Dr.Robert J Hunt & Rodney Winkle; 11 - Machmer Hall & Haymarket Farm


Road to Kentucky Derby 140

Updated: January 21, 2014

Rank Horse Trainer Points Non-Restricted Stakes Earnings
1 Havana Todd Pletcher 14 $660,000
2 Honor Code Shug McGaughey 14 $340,000
3 Tapiture Steve Asmussen 12 $120,738
4 Bond Holder Doug O'Neill 11 $273,000
5 Rise Up Tom Amoss 10 $782,633
6 We Miss Artie Todd Pletcher 10 $262,000
7 Noble Moon Leah Gyarmati 10 $145,000
8 Ami's Holiday Josie Carroll 10 $136,145
9 Vicar's in Trouble Dale Romans 10 $120,000
10 Cleburne Dale Romans 10 $102,044
11 Tanzanite Cat Code Autrey 10 $90,000
12 Midnight Hawk Bob Baffert 10 $60,000
13 Casiguapo Mario Morales 5 $271,050
14 Cairo Prince Kiaran McLaughlin 4 $230,000
15 Dance With Fate Peter Eurton 4 $110,000
16 Smarty's Echo Anne Smith 4 $82,000
17 Albano Larry Jones 4 $70,000
18 Classic Giacnroll Lisa Guerrero 4 $50,000
19 Walt Chris Hartman 4 $45,000
20 Laddie Boy Chuck Peery 4 $39,719
21 Smart Cover Dale Romans 4 $32,918
22 Big Bazinga Sandra Dominguez 4 $29,139
23 Kristo John Sadler 4 $20,000
24 Ride On Curlin William Gowin 3 $64,387
25 Strong Mandate D. Wayne Lukas 2 $382,500
26 Tamarando Jerry Hollendorfer 2 $370,000
27 Go Greeley John Ross 2 $220,601
28 Roman Unbridled Chad Cook 2 $113,000
29 Rankhasprivleges Ken McPeek 2 $100,250
30 Ontology Simon Callaghan 2 $77,250
31 Coastline Mark Casse 2 $62,979
32 Arctic Slope Ken McPeek 2 $41,572
33 Wicked Strong Jimmy Jerkens 2 $40,000
t-34 Gold Hawk Steve Asmussen 2 $20,000
t-34 Scotland Tony Dutrow 2 $20,000
36 Awesome Sky Mark Casse 2 $16,819
37 Can the Man Bob Baffert 1 $111,000
38 Intense Holiday Todd Pletcher 1 $47,500
39 Rum Point Doug O'Neill 1 $30,250
40 Matuszak Bill Mott 1 $12,667
41 Buck Magic Dave Fawkes 1 $8,410
42 Son of a Preacher Bret Calhoun 1 $7,500
43 I'll Wrap It Up Doug O'Neill 1 $6,000

Kentucky Derby Points Race Replays

As we progress through the 2013-14 Kentucky Derby season, we will try and post the videos for the points system races to make your handicapping easier. Again, make sure and bookmark this page as we will constantly update it’s contents after each race has run. To access the videos, simply click on the link below.

Iroquois Stakes at Churchill Downs 9/7/2013

Front Runner Stakes at Santa Anita 9/28/2013

Foxwoods Champagne Stakes at Belmont 10/05/2013

Dixiana Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland 10/05/2013

Grey Stakes at Woodbine 10/06/2013

Breeder’s Cup Juvenile 11/02/2013

Delta Downs Jackpot Stakes 11/23/2013

Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct 11/30/2013

Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill 11/30/2013

Jerome Stakes at Aqueduct 01/04/2014

Sham Stakes at Santa Anita 01/11/2014

LeComte Stakes at Fair Grounds 01/18/2014

Smarty Jones Stakes at Oaklawn 01/20/2014


2014 Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pools

The dates for the four Kentucky Derby Future Wager pools leading up to Derby 140 are:
• KDFW Pool 1: Wednesday, Nov. 27-Saturday, Nov. 30 (4 days)
• KDFW Pool 2: Thursday, Feb. 6-Saturday, Feb. 8 (3 days)
• KDFW Pool 3: Thursday, Feb. 27-Saturday, March 1 (3 days)
• KDFW Pool 4: Thursday, March 27-Saturday, March 29 (3 days)


Morning Line odds by Mike Battaglia

#Wagering Interest——————————ML odds

1.Almost Famous——————————–20-1

2.Bobby’s  Kitten———————————50-1


4.Cairo Prince————————————-30-1



7.Coup de Grace———————————–50-1

8.Financial Mogul———————————50-1


10.Honor Code————————————-15-1

11.In Trouble—————————————50-1

12.Kobe’s Back————————————–50-1



15.New Year’s Day———————————-20-1 (injured)

16.Noble Moon————————————–50-1

17.Pablo Del Monte———————————50-1

18.Ride On Curlin————————————50-1

19.Rise Up———————————————50-1

20.Shared  Belief————————————-30-1

21.Strong Mandate———————————–30-1


23.Tap It Rich—————————————–30-1

24.ALL OTHER  3YOS——————————–2-5

Read more on this pool- 2014 Kentucky Derby Future Wagering


Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis   Click here to watch out the video!


Road to the Kentucky Derby Series Points System Explained in detail.

Cairo Prince takes on 11 in the Holy Bull Stakes – Post Positions, Picks, M/L Odds, Free Past Performances Free Kentucky Derby Prep Race Picks - Predictions - Analysis Introducing the new 2014 “Road to the Kentucky Derby series” point system that will include 36 Stakes Races Worldwide on a combination of dirt and synthetic surfaces with only one qualify turf race between September 29, 2013 and May 1, 2014. In lieu of the recent trend in most major US sports, like the “Fed Ex Cup” in Golf, “The Chase” in Nascar and the playoff systems in Major League Baseball and NFL Football, the Kentucky Derby Committee created a very interesting new system that will award points for the top four finishers in 36 races during 4 phases of this 2013-2014 Kentucky Derby Prep Race Season.

The top 20 point earners upon completion of the Derby Trial at Churchill Downs will be awarded a spot in the 2014 Kentucky Derby. Up to 24 top point earners may enter the race and four horses can enter as Kentucky Derby “also eligible's”, this means that if a horse scratches they could draw into the field, in the order of point merit, within the days leading up to the 140th “Run For The Roses” on May 3rd, 2014.

The New point structure is shown in detail below, there are four phases to the season with a “Prep Season” and “Wild Card” capping the “Championship Season” for three year olds.  The goal of the new system is to secure the horses that are in their top form leading to Kentucky Derby Day.  In the previous arrangement, a horse that won the Breeders Cup Juvenile as a 2 Year Old, (New Years Day) had won more than enough money to be guaranteed a spot in the race.  The problem was that the race was more than 5 months from first Saturday in May and several horses weren’t healthy enough to compete.

“Kentucky Derby Prep Season” -  September to February.

This includes the big 2 YO Stakes Season and Breeders Cup Juvenile. Points Awarded for the following finishing positions in the races included in this phase.

  • 1st = 10 points
  • 2nd = 4
  • 3rd = 2
  • 4th = 1 point

Races included in the “Prep Season”

  1. Royal Lodge at Newmarket in England (only turf)
  2.  Norfolk Stakes at Santa Anita in CA (Dirt)
  3. Breeders’ Futurity at Keeneland in KY (Polytrack)
  4. Champagne Stakes at Belmont in NY (Dirt)
  5. Grey Stakes at  Woodbine in Canada (Polytrack)
  6. Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita in Ca (Dirt)
  7. Delta Downs Jackpot at Delta Downs in LA (Dirt)
  8. Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct in NY (Dirt)
  9. Kentucky Jockey Club at Churchill Downs in KY
  10. CashCall Futurity at Hollywood Park in CA
  11. Sham Stakes at Santa Anita in CA (Dirt)
  12. Lecomte at Fair Grounds in LA (Dirt)
  13. Smarty Jones at Oaklawn Park in AR (Dirt)
  14. Holy Bull Stakes at Gulfstream Park in FL (Dirt)
  15. Robert B. Lewis at Santa Anita in CA (Dirt)
  16. Sam F. Davis at Tampa Bay Downs in FL (Dirt)
  17. Withers Stakes at Aqueduct in NY (Dirt)
  18. El Camino Real Derby at Golden Gate in CA (Synthetic)
  19. Southwest Stakes at Oaklawn Park in AR (Dirt)

“Kentucky Derby Championship Season”

Points earned for this season

  • 1st = 50
  • 2nd = 20
  • 3rd = 10
  • 4th = 5

For the following races:

  1. The Risen Star at Fair Grounds in La (Dirt)
  2. Fountain of Youth at Gulfstream Park in FL (Dirt)
  3. Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct in  NY (Dirt)
  4. Tampa Bay Derby at Tampa Bay Downs in FL (Dirt)
  5. San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita in CA (Dirt)
  6. Rebel Stakes at Oaklawn Park in AR (Dirt)
  7. Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park in KY (Polytrack)
  8.  Sunland Derby at Sunland Park in NM (Dirt)

“Road to Ky Derby Derby Series” Phase Three

Points earned for these races.

  • 1st = 100 points
  • 2nd = 40
  • 3rd = 20
  • 4th = 10
  1. The Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park in FL (Dirt)
  2. U.A.E. Derby at Meydan Racecourse in Dubai (Tapeta synthetic)
  3. Louisiana Derby at the Fair Grounds in LA (Dirt)
  4. Wood Memorial at Aqueduct in NY (Dirt)
  5. Santa Anita Derby at Santa Anita in Ca (Dirt)
  6. Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park in AR (Dirt)
  7. Blue Grass Stakes at Keeneland in KY (Polytrack)

Phase Four “Wild Card” Chance

  • 1st = 20 points
  • 2nd = 8
  • 3rd = 4
  • 4th = 2
  1. Lexington Stakes at Keeneland in KY (Polytrack)
  2. Derby Trial at Churchill Downs in KY (Dirt)

Kentucky Derby Prep Race Point Leaders on the 2014 Road to Kentucky Derby 140

“2014 Kentucky Derby 140 Prep Season” -  September to February 2014.

Road to the 2014 Kentucky Derby 140

Road to the 2014 Kentucky Derby

Charts & Analysis
9/7/13 Iroquois 1 1/16M
Churchill Downs
Cleburne 69 10 4 2 1 Chart
9/28/13 FrontRunner 1 1/16M
Santa Anita
Bond Holder 78 10 4 2 1 Chart
10/5/13 Breeders' Futurity 1 1/16M (S)
We Miss Artie 70 10 4 2 1 Chart
10/5/13 Champagne 1M
Havana 93 10 4 2 1 Chart
10/6/13 Grey 1 1/16M (S)
Ami's Holiday 80 10 4 2 1 Chart
11/2/13 BC Juvenile 1 1/16M
Santa Anita
New Year's Day 88 10 4 2 1 Chart (Out Injured)
11/23/13 Delta Downs Jackpot 1 1/16M
Delta Downs
Rise Up 88 10 4 2 1 Chart
11/30/13 Remsen 1 1/8M
Honor Code 88 10 4 2 1 Chart
11/30/13 Kentucky Jockey Club 1 1/16M
Churchill Downs
Tapiture 83 10 4 2 1 Chart
1/4/14 Jerome 1 mile 70 yds
Noble Moon 85 10 4 2 1 Chart
1/11/14 Sham 1M
Santa Anita
Midnight Hawk 95 10 4 2 1 Chart
1/18/14 Lecomte 1M 70 yds
Fair Grounds
Vicar's in Trouble 97 10 4 2 1 Chart
1/20/14 Smarty Jones 1M
Oaklawn Park
Tanzanite Cat   10 4 2 1 Chart 
1/25/14 Holy Bull 1 1/16M
    10 4 2 1  
2/1/14 Withers 1 1/16M
    10 4 2 1  
2/8/14 Robert B. Lewis 1 1/16M
Santa Anita Park
    10 4 2 1  
2/15/14 El Camino Real Derby 1 1/8M (S)
Golden Gate
    10 4 2 1  
2/17/13 Southwest 1 1/16M
Oaklawn Park
    10 4 2 1  


2014 Kentucky Derby 140 Championship Series

Derby Points Earned
2/22/14 Risen Star 1 1/16M
Fair Grounds
2/22/14 Fountain of Youth 1 1/16M
Florida     50 20 10 5
3/1/14 Gotham 1 1/16M
New York     50 20 10 5
3/8/14 Tampa Bay Derby 1 1/16M
Tampa Bay Downs
Florida     50 20 10 5
3/8/14 San Felipe 1 1/16M
Santa Anita
California     50 20 10 5
3/15/14 Rebel 1 1/16M
Arkansas     50 20 10 5
3/22/13 Spiral 1 1/8M (S)
Kentucky     50 20 10 5
3/23/14 Sunland Derby 1 1/8M
Sunland Park
New Mexico     50 20 10 5
3/29/14 Florida Derby 1 1/8M
Gulfstream Park
Florida     100 40 20 10
3/29/14 UAE Derby 1 3/16M (S)
UAE     100 40 20 10
3/29/14 Louisiana Derby 1 1/8M
Fair Grounds
Louisiana     100 40 20 10
4/5/14 Wood Memorial 1 1/8M
New York     100 40 20 10
4/5/14 Santa Anita Derby 1 1/8M
Santa Anita
California     100 40 20 10
4/12/14 Arkansas Derby 1 1/8M
Oaklawn Park
Arkansas     100 40 20 10
4/12/14 Blue Grass 1 1/8M (S)
Kentucky     100 40 20 10
4/19/14 Lexington 1 1/16M (S)
Kentucky     10 4 2 1


Examining Different Levels of Competition at the Racetrack

Just as all horse races are not created equal, neither are all horses. However, racetracks overcome this inequality as best they can by pitting horses of similar ability together for various races. This practice is known as parity.

To envision how the horse races are planned by the racing secretary's office, think of a pyramid. (The racing secretary is the person in charge of writing the races, assigning weights in handicap races, assigning the number of stalls to trainers, and so on). Each level of the pyramid is a class level. At the base of the pyramid are the maiden horses, horses that have never won a race. At the top of the pyramid are the very best horses, called the stakes horses. These top horses run in stakes races, which offer the most prize money, called purses.

In between are the layers of horses that run in claiming races — where horses can be bought — and non-selling races. Non-selling races come in three types — allowance, optional claiming, and starter handicap races. The goal of the racing office is to write competitive races with full fields of horses. And the goal of the horses is to become stakes horses, but they must win their way up the class ladder, which is called winning through their conditions. Conditions are the eligibility requirements of a horse running in a race, such as age, sex, number of wins, and amount of money won.

Horse racing would be awfully boring, and practically unbettable if in every race, one horse is so dominant over the rest of the field that he goes off at 1/5 odds, wins, and pays $2.40.

At every racetrack, the racing secretary's office produces a condition book that outlines all the races coming up in the next two to three weeks. In theory, the condition book mirrors the class levels of horses residing in the barn area. The racing secretary writes the condition book so that every horse has a good chance of winning at least one race in the book.

Read on to understand how a racing office puts together the horse racing product that you handicap and bet on regularly.

Maiden races: Where it all begins

Each year, more than 35,000 Thoroughbred racehorses are foaled (born). Every foal starts out with the hope that he or she may become a future champion. The reality, however, is that some racehorses are destined for a much brighter future than other racehorses, due to pedigree and training. Every young horse does have one thing in common, though: They all begin as maidens, meaning they've never won a race.

Logically enough, races for maidens are called maiden races. Within the maiden ranks are different class levels:

  • Maiden claiming races: In maiden claiming races, the horses are eligible to be claimed(purchased) out of the race by other horsemen. Horses beginning their careers in maiden claiming races have failed to show their connections (owner and trainer) enough talent during training, so they begin their career with a lower level price tag.
  • Maiden special weight races: These races are the highest level of the various maiden races. Horses entered in maiden special weight races are protected in that another horseman can't claim them out of a race. Maiden special weight races come in many conditions based upon age, sex, surface, and distance. A trainer should be able to find the right spot for his maiden to win — whether it's in a sprint or route race, dirt or turf race, and so on.

The owner and trainer prefer that their horse breaks its maiden (wins for the first time) in a maiden special weight. Doing so proves the horse has some quality and may develop into a nice runner. If a horse struggles to graduate (win its first race) in a maiden special weight race, it's dropped down in class into maiden claiming races.

One thing to remember as a budding handicapper is not to give up on young horses too soon. To catch long shot priced horses, you need to be a forgiving handicapper and forgive a bad race or two. Horses throw in clunker races now and then — especially maidens. To catch good mutuel prices, you need to forgive those bad races and project when the horse will run its best.

Horses run in maiden races to create a larger pool of winners for the next condition. After a horse breaks its maiden, it moves one step up the ladder towards the top of the pyramid to face winners that have broken their maiden and a whole new set of race conditions. Depending on the horse's abilities, it either moves on to claiming races or non-selling races.

Claiming races: Where every horse is for sale

The meat and potato races in horse racing are called claiming races. Every horse entered in a claiming race is eligible to be claimed, meaning bought out of the race. All you need is an owner's license in that state and money on deposit in a horseman's account. Presto — you can claim a racehorse.

Common sense rules in claiming races, so the competition remains fairly equal. For example, if you own a horse worth $30,000, and your trainer enters it into a claiming race for $10,000, chances are you'll win the race and have the horse claimed from you. The winning purse amount won't be enough to make up the difference of the value of the horse you just lost. In essence, you sold a $30,000 horse to another trainer for $10,000. Make enough negative cash flow transactions, and you'll soon be out of the horse-owning business.

Some of the best races to handicap could be called hard knocking veteran claimers. These are older claiming horses that keep running every few weeks. Usually, there are full fields to handicap because the class level is populated with a lot of horses. Depending on the price scale at the racetracks near you, it may be a $35,000 claimer in Southern California and New York, a $20,000 claimer in Kentucky and Florida, or a $10,000 claimer at Philadelphia Park and Mountaineer. This class level is around the median for those racetracks. You'll see a lot of geldings that run every few weeks and grind out purses for their owner and trainer.

You see a certain amount of gamesmanship among the owners and trainers in the claiming game. Claiming a bad-legged racehorse is like buying a lemon of a used car. You need to kick the tires a few times and check under the hood before you buy or bet. Most horses usually run to their true worth. Improving horses move up the claiming ladder, and those horses that don't show improvement drop in class.

Non-selling races: Another step up the ladder

If a horse that broke its maiden shows real promise, the preference is to skip the claiming races and move forward into non-selling races — races where the entrants can't be claimed. After all, the owner and trainer have a lot invested in each horse and want to protect that investment. Successful claiming horses can also move up to this level if their trainers and owners think they have a shot in this new category. The three categories of non-selling races are allowance, optional claiming, and starter allowance — allowance being the highest level within this category and starter allowance being the lowest.

Stakes and handicap races: The top of the pyramid

At the top of the horse pyramid are the best runners on the grounds — the stakes horses andhandicap horses. These horses have gone up the ladder, breaking their maiden and winning through their allowance conditions, and now they're tackling the best horses at the racetrack. They also face invaders who ship in from other racetracks to try and steal a rich purse.

These are the kind of horses and races you see at the racetrack or OTB and on television in the feature races on weekends and holidays. The racing secretary cards overnight stakes, restricted stakes, non-graded stakes, and stakes graded 3, 2, and 1. These stakes horses are the crème de la crème, the kind you're willing to spend good money to see run.

Here are explanations and examples of each category of stakes race:

  • Grade 1 stakes: These stakes exemplify the very best races in the country. For example, the Triple Crown races — the Kentucky Derby, Preakness, and Belmont Stakes — are grade 1 stakes. In races of this caliber, you expect to see champion racehorses competing against the very best in their respective divisions. The richest purses tend to be grade 1 stakes, because the best horses follow the money.
  • Grade 2 stakes: These stakes are considered a cut below grade 1, but they attract a very talented group of horses. A stakes race can move up or down in grade depending on the caliber of horse that runs in it. For example, if a grade 2 stakes has horses in it that normally run in a grade 1 stakes, the race may be upgraded the following year to grade 1 status.
  • Grade 3 stakes: Another level down from grade 1 and grade 2 stakes, these stakes have a noticeably smaller purse because they attract a lesser caliber of stakes horse. Still, the competition is keen, and the field sizes can be large because the race draws starters from a bigger pool of horses. There are more grade 3 caliber stakes horses than grade 1 caliber horses.
  • Non-graded stakes: The vast majority of stakes races don't have grades 1, 2, or 3. However, that doesn't mean the horses aren't any good. Quite the contrary. At a major racetrack, a non-graded stakes may be a stepping stone race to a graded stakes. At a smaller racetrack, a non-graded stakes can attract the best horses on the grounds. Any stakes race at any track attracts a very good caliber of racehorse.
  • Restricted stakes: These stakes are written for horses born in a specific state. For example, there are programs for horses born specifically in California, Florida, Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia, to name a few. So, for example, in a California-bred stakes race, only horses born in California can compete.
  • Overnight stakes: These stakes are written with three days advance notice. In a way, these are high-level glorified allowance races. They carry a higher purse than allowance races. For most stakes races, a horse has to be nominated (pay a fee to become eligible) a month or two before the date it's scheduled to run. This nomination process allows horsemen to point for a race and the marketing and publicity departments at the racetrack to promote the race.

The top stakes are awarded a grading of 1, 2, and 3 to let everybody know what the most important races are. Every racing office has a person called a stakes coordinator assigned to recruit horses for these stakes. It's a matter of pride for racetracks to card a big stakes race and have the best horses in their region, and for that matter in the country, participate.

Triple Crown - This consists of three top horse races, the Kentucky Derby, the Preakness Stakes and the Belmont Stakes. If a thoroughbred wins all three of these races, this is considered the greatest accomplishment by a race horse.

Belmont Stakes - The Belmont Stakes, the last leg of the Triple Crown, started the current distances of one and a half miles in 1926. This famous horse race is referred to as "The Test of The Champion" with this being the most difficult leg of the Triple Crown or "Run for the Carnations" with the winning horse being blanketed with white carnations. Although the Kentucky Derby and the Breeders' Cup Classic are the biggest races in North America; the Belmont Stakes is bigger than any other horse race as it is the culmination of the Triple Crown happening three weeks after the Preakness Stakes.

Kentucky Derby - The Kentucky Derby, the first leg of the Triple Crown, is held annually on the first Saturday in May at Churchill Downs. This famous race is referred to as "The Most Exciting Two Minutes in Sports" or "The Fastest Two Minutes in Sports" for its approximate duration, and is also called "The Run for the Roses" with the winning horse blanketed with red roses. Run at a distance of a mile and a quarter this tends to be the farthest distance a thoroughbred has run up to this point, and this race tends to also be the largest field a thoroughbred has competed against.

Preakness Stakes - he Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown, is held annually on the third Saturday in May at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, Maryland. This famous horse race is run at a distance of 13/16 miles, and tends to be extremely exciting because there is a possibility of a Triple Crown winner if the Kentucky Derby winner also wins the Preakness Stakes.

For a full list of all the stake races featured in the game, please follow the link :