Tag: Known Agenda

Hot Rod Charlie hit the board in his last five races: two wins, a second and two thirds. Four of those came in graded stakes races, making him a legitimate Belmont Stakes threat. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Back to Being a Real Test: Breaking Down the 2021 Belmont Stakes

The 153rd Belmont Stakes wraps up an unpredictable 2021 Triple Crown season with what should be the best race of the three for horseplayers. If 12/1 Medina Spirit winning the Kentucky Derby was a shock to the handicapper’s system, what was 11/1 Rombauer winning the Preakness Stakes? Two horses considered […]

Essential Quality's Blue Grass Stakes wire victory over Highly Motivated was the Champion 2-Year-Old's fifth consecutive win. After finishing fourth in the Kentucky Derby, the colt seeks to rebound as the 2/1 morning-line favorite in the 153rd Belmont Stakes. (Image: Kentuckyderby.com)

Essential Quality Returns to Triple Crown Trail as Belmont Stakes Favorite

Essential Quality duplicated the favorite status he enjoyed for the Kentucky Derby five weeks ago, taking 2/1 morning-line favorite odds into Saturday’s 153rd Belmont Stakes at Belmont Park. Tuesday morning’s Belmont Stakes draw put the Brad Cox-trained, Tapit progeny in post 2. He’s one of four Grade 1 winners and […]

Midnight Bourbon could be one of only two horses to run all three 2021 Triple Crown races.(Image: AP Photo)

Belmont Stakes Field Remains in Flux as Connections Ponder Options

While the Belmont Stakes field remains an early work in progress, several trainers with possible sights on the final jewel of the Triple Crown have either indicated interest or put their horses through workouts with that June 5 race in mind. The Belmont Stakes field of possibles starts with Kentucky […]

Bob Baffert said Medina Spirit was his most improbable Kentucky Derby winner. The Hall of Fame trainer said Medina Spirit came out of the Derby well and is likely for the Preakness Stakes. (Image: Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

Medina Spirit Comes Out of Derby Well, Likely for Preakness

Less than a day after Medina Spirit’s remarkable Kentucky Derby victory, trainer Bob Baffert said he’s on track for the May 15 Preakness Stakes at Pimlico. Tentatively. “He came out of it well. It takes about a week to determine, so I’m going to come back next weekend and see,” […]

The Kentucky Derby is only Rock Your World's second start on dirt. He is the fastest horse in the field based on speed figures. (Image: Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

Almost Back to Normalcy: Breaking Down the 2021 Kentucky Derby

Welcome to the 2021 Kentucky Derby. And welcome back to what a normal Kentucky Derby looks like. Almost. The crowds? Well, they’re back – about 40,000. That’s a quarter of what normally turns Churchill Downs into a sporting bacchanalia. But there’s people in the stands. We’ll take it. The horses? […]

Dynamic One, seen here working out at Churchill Downs last Friday, is one of trainer Todd Pletcher's four Kentucky Derby entries. (Image: Churchill Downs)

Pletcher Plays Another Four of a Kind Kentucky Derby Hand

One trainer has four horses – a quarter of the field – in this year’s Kentucky Derby. Surprisingly, his name is Todd Pletcher, and not Bob Baffert. It’s one of those counterintuitive Derby facts that most casual horse racing fans stumble over. And it’s not their fault. Nor is it […]

Tuesday morning's draw for the 2021 Kentucky Derby from post 20 Bourbonic to post 1 Known Agenda. Those are two of trainer Todd Pletcher's four entries in Saturday's Run for the Roses. (Image: Churchill Downs)

Essential Quality Opens as 2/1 Favorite for 147th Kentucky Derby

As expected, Essential Quality checked in as the 2/1 morning-line favorite for the 147th Kentucky Derby. And Tuesday’s post-position Derby draw sends the undefeated colt and his favorite status into post 14 for Saturday’s 2021 Triple Crown opener. As he watched the posts fill up on Tuesday morning, this put […]

By winning the Florida Derby Saturday, Known Agenda affected the Kentucky Derby Future Wager final pool without being listed individually. He's counted as "All Other 3-Year-Olds" for this pool. (Image: Derbe Glass/Coglianese Photos)

Essential Quality Closes as Your Favorite in KDFW’s Final Pool

The fifth and final Kentucky Derby Future Wager pool closed Sunday afternoon with Essential Quality the 4/1 favorite to win the May 1 Run for the Roses. Unbeaten Essential Quality makes his final Derby tune-up in Saturday’s Grade 2 Blue Grass Stakes during Keeneland’s opening weekend. He opened the weekend […]

Irad Ortiz Jr. celebrates after breaking the Gulfstream Park Championship Meet riding title aboard Known Agenda i the Florida Derby. (Image: Ryan Thompson Photo)

Irad Ortiz Jr. Breaks Gulfstream Park Riding Record in Florida Derby

Irad Ortiz Jr. broke Gulfstream Park’s Championship Meet riding record with an exclamation point, Saturday, piloting Known Agenda to the Grade 1 Florida Derby title. The victory not only gave Ortiz his first Florida Derby, but gave him 138 victories for the South Florida track’s marquee meet. That sent the […]

After winning the Holy Bull and the Fountain of Youth here, Greatest Honour goes for the Gulfstream Park Kentucky Derby prep hat-trick in Saturday's Florida Derby. (Image: Coglianese Photo)

Greatest Honour Chases Another Honor as Florida Derby Favorite

The only thing standing between Greatest Honour and keeping Spectacular Bid company in the history books is one of the best Kentucky Derby preps on the calendar – Saturday’s Grade 1 Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park. Well, that – and the little matter of getting past 10 other horses in […]

Spielberg, seen here nipping The Great One to win the Los Alamitos Futurity, makes his ninth start at his fifth track in Saturday's Florida Derby. This marks trainer Bob Baffert's first Florida Derby starter in his Hall of Fame career. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Baffert Directs Spielberg to Florida for Rare Gulfstream Park Start

Bob Baffert may be synonymous with Kentucky Derby prep races, but the Hall of Fame trainer isn’t synonymous with Gulfstream Park or one of the premier prep races on the calendar, the Florida Derby. Until now. Baffert will make his Florida Derby debut on Saturday, sending the ubiquitous Spielberg eastward […]

Irad Ortiz Jr. usually throws his punches on the track with his riding skill. He was fined $1,000 for throwing them at fellow rider Paco Lopez after Friday's fourth race at Gulfstream Park. (Image: Ryan Thompson/Coglianese Photos)

When Jockeys Fight: Leading Rider Ortiz Fined $1,000 for Starting Brawl

In a rare episode of When Jockeys Fight, Gulfstream Park stewards fined leading jockey Irad Ortiz Jr. $1,000 and put him and brawling partner Paco Lopez on probation after the two riders fought following Friday’s fourth race at Gulfstream. The Daily Racing Form first broke the story. According to the […]

After Jose Ortiz pointed the way to a stretch victory in the Fountain of Youth, Greatest Honour reached his lowest Kentucky Derby odds mark to date. He's 7/1 at Circa Sports, 5/1 at William Hill Nevada. (Image: Lauren King/Gulfstream Park)

Derby Futures: Just When You Thought the Favorites Can’t Go Lower

As the calendar turns to March – a mere two months out from the Kentucky Derby – Circa Sports and William Hill Nevada pared 53 horses from their Derby futures boards. There are 150 horses remaining. The value on many of the favorites? The books sliced that away long ago. […]

Smiley Sobotka broke his maiden at Keeneland in October. He owns that win and two seconds in three races coming into Saturday's Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs. (Image: Coady Photography)

You Never Know What Champions Come Out of Sam F. Davis Stakes

Three years ago, a horse named Flameaway captured the Grade 3 Sam F. Davis Stakes at Tampa Bay Downs. The Mark Casse-trained colt set a stakes record for the 1 1/16 miles – 1:42.44. Flameaway would finish second in the Tampa Bay Derby. He would win a minor stakes as […]

Known Agenda (inside) beat Greatest Honour in this November maiden special weight at Aqueduct. He returns to Derby prep action this weekend in the Withers Stakes at Aqueduct. (Image: Coglianese Photo)

Weekend Stakes: Not Every Good 3-Year-Old Race is a Derby Prep

We’ll see several Kentucky Derby hopefuls return this weekend when two East Coast Grade 3 Derby preps headline the stakes races. And, we’ll meet some Kentucky Oaks contenders in two Oaks preps – one on each coast. At the same time, we’ll see a Grade 2 for 3-year-olds that isn’t […]

Brooklyn Strong splashed home by a neck in Saturday's Grade 2 Remsen Stakes at Aqueduct. This earned the 2-year-old gelding an odds cut on both Circa Sports and William Hill Nevada's Kentucky Derby Futures Boards. (Image: Eclipse Sportswire)

In a New York Minute, Brooklyn Strong Moves Up Derby Futures Board

They ran the Remsen Stakes, a Grade 2 race for 2-year-olds at Aqueduct on Saturday. Forget that the Remsen hasn’t produced a Kentucky Derby winner in 25 years because, despite that, the race impacted this week’s Kentucky Derby futures markets. How big an impact? Not only did Remsen winner Brooklyn […]