The blog is currently in the midst of a minor slump, so minor in fact, that we are $290 in the hole for 2011. However, we are nothing if not persevering. This week's race is the Grade 3 $200,000 Cliff's Edge Derby Trial. Back in the day, this race was actually a springboard into the Kentucky Derby. While it has not been that for many years (I think the last horse to run in the Trial and then do well in the Derby was Don't Get Mad, who was 4th in 2005), the Derby Trial is the Opening Day feature on the Churchill Downs program. Here is the analysis:
My top selection will be #5 JJ's Lucky Train. I think he might have some value here, given the fact that Travelin Man is 7-5 on the morning line, which I find wildly optimistic. JJ's Lucky Train won the Grade 3 Bay Shore at Aqueduct on April 9. He also has been the one mile distance before and even run on a muddy track. The Louisville oval might have some moisture in it still after a rash of storms have pelted the area for some time. My second selection is #8 Indiano. He did run 2nd to Travelin Man in the Grade 2 Swale at Gulfstream on April 3, but again he has experience with wet surfaces and significantly more experience than the projected favorite in here. Garrett Gomez will ride. I will use the morning line favorite, #2 Travelin Man, as my third pick in the Derby Trial. He has two wins and a second in three lifetime starts, the second coming to the dominating Flashpoint in the Grade 2 Hutcheson. However, he has never run a mile before. The farthest he has gone is seven furlongs. It is worth noting that two of his three Beyer figures were in the low 100s. I will use 8-1 shot, #7 Indian Winter, in the fourth spot as a possible price pick. He posted a bullet workout on April 22 at Hollywood Park and I actually saw him run in the Turf Paradise Derby on February 26. It was a troubled trip and he seemed somewhat immature in there. Hopefully, he has done some growing up. Here is the play for the Grade 3 Cliff's Edge Derby Trial:
$10 WP #5
$2 EX 5 with 2-3-7-8
Remember, They Are Off accepts no responsibility for any wagers placed in conjunction with these selections. They are merely suggestions. Tune in again next week for the 137th Kentucky Derby coverage. For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!