Tag: Medina Spirit

More people watched Bob Baffert lift his seventh Kentucky Derby trophy than watched Oscar winners lift theirs. NBC reported strong viewership for Medina Spirit's Derby upset. (Image: Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

Better than the Oscars? Kentucky Derby Ratings Jump from 2020

NBC Sports announced strong ratings for Saturday’s telecast of the 147th Kentucky Derby, producing Total Audience Delivery numbers of 14.5 million viewers for the opening leg of the Triple Crown. Putting those numbers into perspective, the Derby drew better numbers than the final round of the Masters. For the first […]

Even as the field begins forming, Kentucky Derby runner-up Mandaloun remains a maybe for the May 15 Preakness Stakes. (Image: Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

Preakness Plans Begin Taking Shape; Cox Remains on the Fence

As Brad Cox ponders his Preakness plans with Kentucky Derby runner-up Mandaloun and fourth-place finisher Essential Quality, the Preakness field is taking shape around him. Maryland Jockey Club stakes coordinator Trish Bowman put out a preliminary list of prospects for the May 15 second leg of the Triple Crown. That […]

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,” […]

Medina Spirit and John Velazquez illustrate their tenacity in deep stretch, holding off Mandaloun to capture the 147th Kentucky Derby. (Image: Churchill Downs/Coady Photography)

The 2021 Derby: 12/1 Medina Spirit wins Baffert His Record Seventh

The primary lesson coming out of the 2021 Kentucky Derby is as simple as it is frustrating for everyone not named Bob Baffert. Even when Baffert brings his third-string horse to Churchill Downs, he wins Derbies. That would be Medina Spirit, who gave Baffert his seventh Derby victory Saturday, passing […]

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? […]

Rock Your World rocked Santa Anita Park's marquee race Saturday, winning the Santa Anita Derby by more than four lengths. Jockey Umberto Rispoli earned his first Grade 1 victory along the way. (Image: Benoit Photography)

On Record Day, Rock Your World Rocks, Rolls His Way to Kentucky Derby

Rock Your World rocked the Santa Anita Derby, which rocked bettors into producing Santa Anita Park’s largest all-sources pari-mutuel Santa Anita Derby handle in 14 years. On a day where fans returned to the Southern California track for the first time in more than a year, the 8,246 attendees on […]

Medina Spirit cost owner Amr Zedan only $35,000. He's earned nearly five times that total -- with more on the line in Saturday's $750,000 Santa Anita Derby. (Image: Benoit Photo)

Medina Spirit, Bob Baffert Cast Their Spell in Santa Anita Derby

About the only thing faster than Life Is Good on the track was the rush of horses piling into the Santa Anita Derby the moment the Bob Baffert supercolt departed the Kentucky Derby Trail with an ankle injury. Now, all of a sudden, horses like Dream Shake, Parnelli, Law Professor […]

Medina Spirit (right) nipped Roman Centurian (left) and Hot Rod Charlie in a Robert B. Lewis photo finish in January. The Bob Baffert trainee becomes the expected favorite in the April 3 Santa Anita Derby. (Image: Benoit Photo)

With Life Is Good Out, Baffert Shuffles His Derby Prospects

With Life Is Good off the Kentucky Derby Trail with what’s been diagnosed as an ankle chip, Bob Baffert shuffled his deep bench of Derby contenders. The shuffle means both Medina Spirit and trail newcomer Defunded will run the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby on April 3. Baffert made the […]

Life Is Good led at every call for the third consecutive race. His eight-length San Felipe Stakes victory brought him 50 Kentucky Derby points and depressed futures odds. (Image: Benoit Photography)

Life Is Good Shows He’s Eight Lengths Good in San Felipe Romp

The hardest part of analyzing Life Is Good’s dismantling of Saturday’s San Felipe Stakes field at Santa Anita Park is determining what was the most impressive element of his victory. Was it the eight-length victory? The legitimate fractions of 23.63 seconds for the first quarter-mile and 46.83 for the first […]

Mike Smith and Life Is Good are your odds-on favorites to win Saturday's Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes at Santa Anita. (Image: Benoit Photo)

San Felipe Stakes: Where Life Is Good to Bob Baffert

The Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes marks the point of the year where Bob Baffert’s endless 3-year-old depth finally makes him compete with himself. Yes, he’s sent out Life Is Good and Medina Spirit in the Sham. Yes, we saw Concert Tour nip Freedom Fighter in the San Vicente. But […]

Highly Motivated makes his anticipated 2021 debut in Saturday's Gotham Stakes at Aqueduct. (Image: Coglianese Photos)

Weekend Stakes: History at Santa Anita, Derby Preps on Both Coasts

This weekend’s stakes lineup features one of the most iconic races in American horse racing, the Santa Anita Handicap. But even that event, technically Santa Anita Park’s Saturday headliner, may get overshadowed on its own card by a Grade 2 Kentucky Derby prep, the San Felipe Stakes. Featuring two of […]

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. […]

Candy Man Rocket parlayed his Sam F. Davis Stakes victory into a spot on Churchill Downs' Kentucky Derby Future Wager's Pool 3. (Image: SV Photography)

New Entries, Same Favorites in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3

Nine new offerings entered the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3 picture, but two familiar names continue holding court as the KDFW favorites. Essential Quality and Life Is Good opened as individual 8/1 morning-line favorites in the third of five KDFW pools. As expected, however, the overall favorite is “All […]

Between them, Todd Pletcher (left) and Bob Baffert own eight Kentucky Derby victories. Pletcher (45) and Baffert (23) have the most Triple Crown early nominated horses for 2021. (Image: Doug Engle/AP File)

Essential Quality Leads 326-Strong Triple Crown Nomination Parade

Getting your horse a Triple Crown nomination used to be so simple that connections to this year’s 3-year-old hopefuls nominated 326 horses to compete in the three American Classic races this spring. Those 326 nominations represent a slight, 6.1% dip from last year’s 347 early nominees. Those connections paid $600 […]

Tarantino, seen here in an October workout, finished a solid second in the Grade 3 Holy Bull. That earned him a prominent odds cut on this week's Kentucky Derby futures boards. (Image: Ernie Belmonte)

Derby Futures: Tarantino Shows Even Reservoir Dogs Have Their Day

It wasn’t a case of pulp fiction that Tarantino was sitting at 225/1 when he debuted on the Circa Sports and William Hill Nevada Kentucky Derby futures boards last week. Even the Jackie Browns and Inglorious Basterds of the world stared juicy odds in the face before Tarantino entered the […]

Hot Rod Charlie is one of two Doug O'Neill horses in the Saturday's Robert B. Lewis field. He's seeking a repeat of his out-of-nowhere second as a 94/1 longshot in the Breeders' Cup Classic. (Image: Horsephotos)

Lewis Stakes Recount Historic Horses, Revive Current Rivalries

In 2012, little-known 43/1 long shot I’ll Have Another won the Robert B. Lewis Stakes at Santa Anita Park. This feat drew mild murmurs and a few curious looks throughout the horseracing world. After all, the Doug O’Neill-trained colt came into the Lewis off a horrible sixth in the Hopeful […]

Lecomte Stakes winner Midnight Bourbon opens at 30/1 in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2. (Image: Lou Hodges Jr./Hodges Photography)

The Field is Your Favorite in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2

While Life Is Good yielded his favorite status in at least one Las Vegas future book, he holds down 6/1 individual favorite status in Pool 2 of Churchill Downs’ Kentucky Derby Future Wager (KDFW) pool. At the same time, the Derby field of “All Other 3-Year-Olds” is the overall 9/5 […]