The race offers 50-20-10-5 Road to the Kentucky Derby points to the top four finishers. That 50-point bonanza to the winner means whoever crosses the wire first is virtually guaranteed a spot in the Kentucky […]
Tonalist Headlines $600,000 Grade II Jim Dandy at the Spa
The Grade II $200,000 Jim Dandy Stakes July 26 at Saratoga features a field of seven including Kentucky Derby runner-up Commanding Curve and Belmont Stakes winner Tonalist.
Tonalist, trained by Christophe Clement, is the 8/5 morning line favorite and has been working steadily since his Belmont score. Ridden by Joel Rosario for the third consecutive start, Tonalist figures to find a comfortable tracking position behind Cousin Stephen (12/1) who looks like the most likely pace-setter on paper. Tonalist has three wins in five career starts for earnings of $957,000.
Wicked Strong adds blinkers
Wood Memorial (G.1) winner Wicked Strong returns from back to back fourth place efforts in the Kentucky Derby and Belmont Stakes as the 2/1 second choice. The James Jerkins trainee tries blinkers for the first time in his career which should place him closer to the early speed. Wicked Strong has shown an strong closing kick throughout his career and will be ridden for the fifth time in nine starts by jockey Raji Maragh.
KY Derby runner-up returns
At 5/1, Kentucky Derby runner-up Commanding Curve is an interesting item although he figures to be well off the early leaders with plenty of ground to make up in the stretch. In his last start, Commanding Curve ran a disappointing ninth in the Belmont behind Tonalist. Another closer, Kid Cruz (8/1), is sharp for trainer Linda Rice and has recorded back to back victories in the Easy Goer and Dwyer Stakes. This will be the 50th running of the race.
The field is set for the 2019 Preakness Stakes, and looking at the 13 rivals on paper is enough to make any serious handicapper's mouth water. There's simply a ton of betting value here.
Post positions have been drawn, and the oddsmakers have instilled Omaha Beach as the morning line favorite for the running of the 145th Kentucky Derby. The race goes Saturday, May 4th, with 20 runners set to battle 1 1/4 miles on the Churchill Downs dirt track, chasing a purse of $3 million and the first leg of the US Triple Crown.
The defending champ is back in the field for the 2016 Arlington Million on Saturday, but he's being overshadowed by a strong group of foreign invaders.