Untapable ($4) earned a TFUS speed figure of 114, easily a career best number, in winning the Kentucky Oaks. She’s awesome, what can we say? But no, her connections will not try her against the boys in the Preakness.
“I spoke with Ron Winchell and (racing manager) David Fiske last night, and we didn’t feel that it was in her best interest to run back in two weeks,” Asmussen said.
While we always applaud putting the horse’s interests first, and would never question a decision made in that vein……C’MON MAN, WHERE’S YOUR SPORTING NATURE?
Ha ha, we’re just kidding. Of course! But that sure would spice up the second leg of the Triple Crown, wouldn’t it? The presence of Social Inclusion would help too. But one can’t be too encouraged by the fact that he was scratched out of his scheduled prep on Saturday at Gulfstream due to a bruised foot.
By the way, Asmussen stood in the winner’s circle on Friday, sat for an interview with Bob Costas for NBC’s Derby telecast, and no dark clouds let forth their fury upon the racing world. I thought he came across pretty well. Though Costas let him off the hook on the immigration thing.
The top Churchill Downs speed figure of Derby weekend went to Central Banker ($23.60), who earned a career best 118 in taking the Churchill Downs Handicap on Saturday. This four-year old son of Speightstown had disappointed in the Carter Handicap. But that was a slow-early/fast-late affair which did not fit his preferred race profile.
(Note that the pace figures are set to the race leader.)
Saturday’s race was far more to his liking with a fast pace. Note that the top three finishers, who all rallied from behind, had their raw final time figures downgraded for pace considerations, while front-running Delauney was upgraded for his effort.
Remember that those of you who prefer your speed figures raw, and who want to see them without our pace adjustments, can see them in the charts this way……or by setting your Fractions Preferences to Pace Figures/This Horse. More on that here.
Another horse who came out of the Carter and ran well at Churchill was Golden Ticket, who just failed to last in Friday’s Alysheba. Moonshine Mullin ($15.80) came again on the rail to prevail in a gritty performance, earning a speed figure of 108 (not adjusted for grittiness). Will Take Charge, the 3-5 favorite, finished 6th in a listless performance that may finally prompt Wayne Lukas to give him some time off. He still does not have a layoff line in our PPs, which don’t provide one unless a horse has been off for at least 90 days. His speed figure on Friday was 95, the first time since last year’s Belmont, nine races prior, that he failed to crack triple digits.
For those of you itching to get started on tomorrow’s card at Belmont, our Mike Beer has his full card analysis up now on the New York Racing Association website, where you can find them each and every race day. And you can get the PPs for Belmont, and all the action tomorrow (or today if you can’t wait) here.