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Shags homely sheep
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here is the second leg of the Triple Crown contest. Pick a horse, any horse. First person to post gets that horse. Someone picks your horse before you, then pick another horse. Only 9 entries allowed. Prize will be a fiver or so of cigars. Winner of this leg will get the first pick in the next leg. If you pick the Triple Crown trifecta, a special prize is yours. ResIpsa won rhe first leg and is sticking with who brought him to the dance. Good luck on the trifecta. Here are the horses in their post positions. Handicapping by by T.O. Whenham, of course I removed his odds.

1. Mint Slewlep - This horse has the longest price in the field, and that is not by coincidence. He ran four times as a two year old, and it took all four to finally break his maiden. That was at Laurel, so he was hardly against the best of the best. This year he has been essentially irrelevant in both the Gotham and the Withers. It hard for a horse to be an underlay at 30/1, but this horse has pulled that feat off.

2. Xchanger - This Maryland-based runner was aimed at the Derby until he gave up his spot at the last moment. That was probably a good move, though this likely isn't a much better spot for him. He'll be challenging Hard Spun for the lead, which could set up a faster pace scenario than some would like to see. He won the Federico Tesio Stakes last time out, making him the only entrant to have run at Pimlico before. Despite that, he would have to make a major jump in performance to win here, and I don't see that happening.

3. Circular Quay - Todd Pletcher only recently put this horse up for Preakness consideration. That tells us that he came out of the Derby in fine form and has been working well since. I still don't love the horse, though. His hard closing style doesn't usually play well at Pimlico. More importantly, the speed numbers coming out of his Louisiana Derby win weren't in the class of the top contenders here, and he regressed off that race in the Derby. A win wouldn't be completely out of the question, but other horses will provide better value for money.

4. Curlin - Unlike the Derby, Curlin will not be hampered by a bad post position. He should be able to settle into a comfortable stalking spot. The challenge for the horse will be to bounce back from a troubled trip. Some horses lose confidence the first time things don't go their way. I suspect that Curlin is classier than that, but only time will tell. The typical Preakness race scenario lends itself well to Curlin's style. The trick will be for him to stay out of trouble so that he is in position to uncork his move when the time comes. In the ideal scenario this horse and Street Sense would have a stretch duel for the ages.

5. King of the Roxy - Here's Todd Pletcher's second shot at getting the gigantic Triple Crown gorilla off of his back. Pletcher wisely held this horse out of the Derby after he tired and was passed by Tiago in the Santa Anita Derby. He comes in off a longer layoff than is typically ideal in the Preakness, and it's hard to imagine that he has improved enough since Santa Anita to handle better horses than Tiago at this distance. He'll be looking to stalk the pace and get lucky.

6. Flying First Class - This horse deserves respect because it is trained by D. Wayne Lukas, the greatest Triple Crown trainer of his generation. I'd respect Lukas even more, though, if would leave this horse in the barn on Saturday. He's here because of his win in the Derby Trial Stakes last time out. That performance against a typically weak field was preceded by two races, the Rebel and the Arkansas Derby, in which he was absolutely crushed by Curlin. He was the furthest thing from a factor in either race, and he almost certainly won't be here, either.

7. Hard Spun - The second place Derby finisher has a strong ally in the saddle - Mario Pino is the leading rider in Maryland. Though it's easy to imagine this horse in a close fight at the finish line, and he is most likely deserving of his second favorite status, I'm a bit nervous about his ability to stay sharp after the blazing workout and strong effort he put together back-to-back in Louisville. He's going to be challenged on the lead, but if he can stay within himself then anything is possible.

8. Street Sense - Resipsa

9. CP West - There was a time last fall that I really liked this horse. A lot of pages have turned since then, though. He has never handled this distance, or given us reason to believe he can, he wasn't good enough to win a weak Withers, and his speed figures aren't even in the ballpark. Horse racing is great in part because anything can happen, but a CP West victory seems highly unlikely.

Good luck ladies and gentlemen.
 

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Misplaced
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6,385 Posts
My horse be #4 Curlin..

Thanks for the Contest!
 

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2,543 Posts
Hard Spun. Love the racing!

Edit: Now that I got my pick in :)...I only briefly looked at the program, but I hit the exacta in the Derby, so I think I would be hard pressed not to like Hard Spun as the 2nd or 3rd choice. However, I think Curlin will be Street Sense's toughest competition in this race. The sheer size of the Derby field makes that one of the most difficult races to get a handle on and I didn't see any dissection of Curlin's trip in the Derby. The amount of ground Street Sense saved in the Derby makes me wonder if he's as good as he looked at the finish (he very well may be!). I was however impressed with Hard Spun's perseverance after cutting the fractions.

With the limited handicapping, I will say Curlin nipping Hard Spun at the wire with Street Sense third by about 2 lengths. To round out the super how about C P West finishing fourth.

Good luck to anyone betting the race and thanks for the contest!
 

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Shags homely sheep
Joined
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5,059 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Here is the second leg of the Triple Crown contest. Pick a horse, any horse. First person to post gets that horse. Someone picks your horse before you, then pick another horse. Only 9 entries allowed. Prize will be a fiver or so of cigars. Winner of this leg will get the first pick in the next leg. If you pick the Triple Crown trifecta, a special prize is yours. ResIpsa won rhe first leg and is sticking with who brought him to the dance. Good luck on the trifecta. Here are the horses in their post positions. Handicapping by by T.O. Whenham, of course I removed his odds.

1. Mint Slewlep - This horse has the longest price in the field, and that is not by coincidence. He ran four times as a two year old, and it took all four to finally break his maiden. That was at Laurel, so he was hardly against the best of the best. This year he has been essentially irrelevant in both the Gotham and the Withers. It hard for a horse to be an underlay at 30/1, but this horse has pulled that feat off.

2. Xchanger - bazookajoe

3. Circular Quay - DennisP

4. Curlin - boonedoggle

5. King of the Roxy - NCRadioMan

6. Flying First Class - livwire68

7. Hard Spun - yourchoice

8. Street Sense - Resipsa

9. CP West - No1der

Good luck ladies and gentlemen.
 

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Misplaced
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6,385 Posts
HECK YES! Curlin looked great in the Derby and I felt great about it. I should have bet my life savings...than again, I would have lost! :ss
 
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