This will be the final version of the Super Six Derby Pix before the Kentucky Derby on May 1. There might be two further chances for someone to earn graded stakes earnings before the Derby with the Withers and Derby Trial this coming weekend, but it is likely that there won't be anyone wheeling back a week later to run in the Derby after whatever happens this weekend. So then, here are the final Super Six Derby Pix:
#1 Eskendereya-He turned in a very nice workout on Saturday, going five furlongs in 1:02.25 at Churchill Downs. He has the two highest Beyers of any three-year-old this season. I believe he will be no lower than 2-1 when the bell rings on Derby Day. Will he win the Kentucky Derby? It is entirely possible he is the real deal. Will he have my money on him? Only in exotic boxes since the price will not be worth wagering on, in my estimation.
#2 Lookin At Lucky- I think the Baffert trainee is going to be the second choice in the wagering, barring any of the inevitable "wise-guy" horses sneaking up on everyone like Endorsement or Mission Impazible. The 2009 Juvenile Champion has not had much racing luck this year, but he still has a win and a third in his last two starts. One thing any horse that wins the Derby needs to have is racing luck and he better get some sometime soon.
#3 Ice Box- Nick Zito scored the Roses twice in his career, but he also has his share of Derby disappointment as well. He sent five runners to the gate in 2005 and failed to hit the board with any of them, including the favored Bellamy Road, who was very Eskendereya-like in his Wood win. Will the Florida Derby winner enter the first category or will he be part of the latter? If all the speed we think is going to be there is there, it could be very interesting.
#4 Sidney's Candy- The Santa Anita Derby winner avoided all the mayhem behind him and won easily. Does anyone really think he will able to avoid the has-to-happen mayhem that will occur in the Derby? He will have to replicate War Emblem's win from 2002 to have a legitimate chance, in my opinion. He will have to get the lead and stay there all the way. I just cannot see that happening with speed demons like Rule, Discreetly Mine, and Conveyance in the Derby field.
#5 Awesome Act- I have been warming to his chances lately given the circumstances of his crushing loss to Eskendereya in the Wood. He had all kinds of problems in the Wood Memorial, but the winning style he showed in the Gotham could suit him well on Derby Day, especially if Eskendereya doesn't fire. Julien Leparoux in the saddle is another factor that I am particularly fond of with this Awesome Again offspring.
#6 Dublin- His Sire, Afleet Alex, was the best three-year-old of the aforementioned 2005 Triple Crown class. He won the Preakness despite being mugged by Scrappy T and then followed it up with a classy Belmont victory. The main issue I have with this Lukas trainee is that he seems reluctant to go past anyone. He tends to hang around with the company and that is not a trait I like my Derby winners to have.
Tune in tomorrow for more from They Are Off. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!