Three words said it all. Prior to the post parade for last Saturday’s 150th running of the Belmont Stakes, three words trainer Bob Baffert said to Mike Smith, the seemingly ageless 52-year-old rider of Justify, pretty much spelled doom for the other nine starters in the race. Justify was just minutes away from attempting to […]

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When American Pharoah sought to sweep the Triple Crown in the 2015 Belmont Stakes, I not only picked him to win here at Xpressbet.com, I listed 10 reasons why I thought he would do it. I also listed five concerns. American Pharoah came through. He won the Belmont by 5 1/2 lengths to end a […]

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Racing enthusiasts are eagerly looking ahead to the June 9 Belmont Stakes when Justify goes for Triple Crown glory. Super J will be trying to become the 13th Thoroughbred in history to sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont. In Justify’s first recorded workout since the May 19 Preakness, he effortlessly zipped four furlongs […]

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It is a meteoric rise to superstardom that is nothing less than astonishing. Justify made his first career start on Feb. 18 at Santa Anita Park. And now, after having won the May 5 Kentucky Derby and last Saturday’s Preakness Stakes, he sets his sights on the June 9 Belmont Stakes and its demanding 1 […]

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Secretariat won the 1973 Kentucky Derby by 2 1/2 lengths. Sham ran his heart out but had to settle for second. Justify won the 2018 Kentucky Derby by 2 1/2 lengths. Good Magic ran his heart out but had to settle for second. Two weeks after Secretariat’s Kentucky Derby victory, he won the Preakness Stakes. […]

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When American Pharoah in 2015 swept the Kentucky Derby, Preakness Stakes and Belmont Stakes, he ended a 37-year streak in which there had been no Triple Crown winner. He became the first horse to achieve the coveted feat since Affirmed in 1978. But those 37 years were peanuts compared to the streak that came to […]

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Dinosaurs were roaming the earth the last time a horse won the Kentucky Derby without racing as a 2-year-old.   Okay, that’s an exaggeration. But the point is it’s been ages since it happened.   No Kentucky Derby winner from the 1880s is talked about these days as much as Apollo. That’s because no horse […]

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Quip and Gronkowski are out. Combatant and Instilled Regard are in. It was announced Monday that Quip, winner of the Grade II Tampa Bay Derby and runner-up in the Grade I Arkansas Derby, will not run in the Grade I Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on May 5. Quip races for WinStar Farm and China […]

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Talk about running up the score. Racing on the dirt for the first time, Mendelssohn streaked home in last Saturday’s Group I UAE Derby in Dubai. He kept widening…and widening…and widening. When he reached the finish, no one else was in the same zip code. He won by such a large margin that there is […]

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Derby Strikes season 2018 has arrived. Back in 1999, I developed my Derby Strikes System. The system consists of nine key factors. When a horse does not qualify in one of the nine categories, the horse gets a strike. The nine key factors are explained at the end of this column. Various “rules” for the […]

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  Is this the year it finally happens? Will this be the year in which the Kentucky Derby winner is someone who did not race as a 2-year-old? We already saw one of the longest streaks in all of sports come to an end last Friday when UMBC (University of Maryland, Baltimore County) crushed Virginia […]

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Last Saturday’s San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita Park turned out to be a real humdinger. McKinzie, favored at even money in the Grade II affair, and Bolt d’Oro, sent off at 6-5, put on quite a show. They staged a furious battle from the quarter pole all the way to a photo finish. The […]

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This Saturday’s San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita Park should be a lot of fun to watch. The Grade II affair features an early season clash between McKinzie, who has been No. 1 on my Kentucky Derby Top 10 all year up to this point, and Bolt d’Oro, who currently is No. 2 on my […]

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The champ is back. Good Magic, who was voted a 2017 Eclipse Award as champion 2-year-old male, returns to the racing wars this Saturday in the Grade II Xpressbet.com Fountain of Youth Stakes at Gulfstream Park. The 1 1/16-mile affair has drawn a field of 10. Trained by two-time Eclipse Award winner Chad Brown, Good […]

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What two former Quarter Horse trainers — D. Wayne Lukas and Bob Baffert — have managed to accomplish in Thoroughbred racing is truly phenomenal. Lukas has won the Kentucky Derby, the most coveted American race in Thoroughbred racing, four times (Winning Colors in 1988, Thunder Gulch in 1995, Grindstone in 1996 and Charismatic in 1999). […]

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