Several horses on the bubble are trying to pick up Kentucky Derby point in the final Keeneland prep that awards 20 points to the winner. The race gets a poor betting score of *1* due to a legitimate favorite. There should be ample early speed with several "E" horses signed on and a short run into the first turn.
1. Noble Reflection - As with many of these Kentucky Derby preps this year, we have a maiden winner stretching out from a sprint race and making 2nd start of 3yo year. So hard to handicap these types. Won impressively and should get the lead today saving ground. Drops LASIX & not Triple Crown nominated. You will get a big price and this one looks capable albeit risky.
2. Swiftsure - Highly thought of with 2 wins in 2 starts but hasn't raced since January which can't have been by design. Certainly capable of winning this but a clear underlay at 5-1. Also drops LASIX for first time.
3. Bezos - Very highly regarded firing very fast bullet workouts for Baffert. Energy score for recent maiden win was slow making this another horse in here dropping LASIX as an underlay.
4. It's My House - Will try to show speed but likely to slow early to keep pace. Ran well on synthetic stakes taking 4th versus Rombauer and then shipped to weak TuP stakes where he was all out to win in slow time. Easy toss.
5. Unbridled Honor - Confirmed and likely only closer in race. Should get a relaxed trip and will need to find a good path coming for home without losing ground. Think this one has a very good shot to hit the board at a big price.
6. Hockey Dad - Runs well on every surface. This horse has good tactical speed and competitive energy. O'neill/Reddam know how to win stakes races and want to get in the Derby. Maybe.
7. Proxy - Over rated who has failed to win in stakes company as a 3yo. Always questioned why they put LASIX on this horse at end of 2yo career if this was a Derby contender. Added blinkers in last start which may not have helped and keeps them on today. Cutback in distance should be good with blazing KEE work. Deserving favorite.
8. Ultimate Badger - Heavily raced sprinter running for Romans who is struggling in these Derby preps. This horse needs a rest. Toss.
9. King Fury - Ranks high in sheet off 2yo form but playing catch-up today against fit 3yos. McPeek/Hernandez are good together but McPeek is weak with horses off a layoff. Blinkers off today is likely a sign of a maturing horse but why did they wait so long to give him a 3yo start. Underneath only.
10. Starrinmydreams - This horse needs the lead and hasn't been able to get it in last 2 starts with no excuses. Outside draw today is not good. Expect this horse to get shuffled back badly and not make an impact. Toss.
Bottom Line - This is a bad betting race but favorite is going to be over bet and a couple of the short priced alternatives are also underlays. With a race like this you need to demand a big price and bet it to win. Don't try to get cute in exotics because there are just too many options to consider. #1 Noble Reflection will be a huge price and this horse is capable of getting the lead early and saving ground. #5 Unbridled Honor is the only true closer in the race but will need some racing luck. #6 Hockey Dad is a competitive horse who could jump up on return to dirt, narrowly misses getting a letter grade and does have "+" sign and $8 of value. Will be watching the tote and betting one of these to win. Good luck!