Quip made a triumphant return in the March 10 Tampa Bay Derby (G2), outperforming 19-1 odds in the first appearance since a troubled seventh in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) last November. It’s the third upset from five races so far in the Championship Series, with Bravazo surprising at 21-1 in the Risen Star (G2) and Promises Fulfilled wiring foes at 18-1 in the Fountain of Youth (G2), and the 50-point prize ensures the son of Distorted Humor a spot in the Kentucky Derby starting gate.

Considering he brought a declining pattern of BRIS Speed ratings (88-86-84) into his seasonal bow, Quip turned things around nicely registering a 98 Speed. That number is on par with the top two from the San Felipe (G2) (Bolt d’Oro and McKinzie) but those rivals had run much faster previously.

Now 3-for-4 overall for conditioner Rudolphe Brisset, Quip is one of several Kentucky Derby contenders this year for WinStar Farm, China Horse Club International and SF Racing, who were also represented over the weekend by the exciting up-and-coming prospect Justify.

We’ll see whether Quip can keep improving with a triple-digit BRIS Speed rating in the final prep race.

Flameaway was interfered with at the start and got on track late to record a fast-closing second. His 97 BRIS Speed figure dropped four points from an upset win in the February 10 Sam F. Davis (G3), but he delivered a solid performance nonetheless given the early trouble.

Third-placer World of Trouble doesn’t appear to be a realistic candidate for the 1 ¼-mile Kentucky Derby distance. Fourth-placer Vino Rosso didn’t perform well with first-time blinkers and may prove better suited for targets after the Kentucky Derby.

The Road to the Kentucky Derby series determines eligibility and a 35-race schedule is divided between the Prep Season and Championship Series.

Top BRIS Speed ratings so far in the Championship Series, which began in mid-February (90 and above):

Horse

 

Race (finish)

 

BRIS Speed

Enticed

 

Gotham (1st)

 

104

Promises Fulfilled

 

Fountain of Youth (1st)

 

104

Strike Power

 

Fountain of Youth (2nd)

 

101

Old Time Revival

 

Gotham (2nd)

 

101

Bolt d’Oro

 

San Felipe (1st)

 

98

Bravazo

 

Risen Star (1st)

 

98

Quip

 

Tampa Bay Derby (1st)

 

98

McKinzie

 

San Felipe (2nd)

 

98

Snapper Sinclair

 

Risen Star (2nd)

 

98

Good Magic

 

Fountain of Youth (3rd)

 

98

World of Trouble

 

Tampa Bay Derby (2nd)

 

97

Free Drop Billy

 

Gotham (3rd)

 

96

Noble Indy

 

Risen Star (3rd)

 

96

World of Trouble

 

Tampa Bay Derby (3rd)

 

96

Machismo

 

Fountain of Youth (4th)

 

96

Instilled Regard

 

Risen Star (4th)

 

95

Firenze Fire

 

Gotham (4th)

 

93

Kanthaka

 

San Felipe (3rd)

 

91

Vino Rosso

 

Tampa Bay Derby (4th)

 

91

Peace

 

San Felipe (4th)

 

90

 

 

 

 

 

Top BRIS Speed ratings from the Prep Season, which began last September and concluded in mid-February:

Horse

 

Race (finish)

 

BRIS Speed

Audible

 

Holy Bull (1st)

 

105

Bolt d’Oro

 

FrontRunner (1st)

 

105

Good Magic

 

BC Juvenile (1st)

 

105

McKinzie

 

Sham (1st)

 

104

Flameaway

 

Sam F. Davis (1st)

 

101

Catholic Boy

 

Sam F. Davis (2nd)

 

101

Solomini

 

Los Alamitos Futurity (3rd)

 

101

McKinzie

 

Los Alamitos Futurity (1st)

 

100

Instilled Regard

 

Los Alamitos Futurity (2nd)

 

100

Solomini

 

BC Juvenile (2nd)

 

100

Vino Rosso

 

Sam F. Davis (3rd)

 

100

All Out Blitz

 

Sham (2nd)

 

99

Free Drop Billy

 

Holy Bull (2nd)

 

99

Bolt d’Oro

 

BC Juvenile (3rd)

 

99

Catholic Boy

 

Remsen (1st)

 

98

My Boy Jack

 

Southwest (1st)

 

98

Firenze Fire

 

Champagne (1st)

 

96

Instilled Regard

 

Lecomte (1st)

 

96

Good Magic

 

Champagne (2nd)

 

96

Solomini

 

FrontRunner (2nd)

 

96

Avery Island

 

Withers (1st)

 

94

Firenze Fire

 

Jerome (1st)

 

94

Seven Trumpets

 

Jerome (2nd)

 

94

My Boy Jack

 

Sham (3rd)

 

94

Shivermetimbers

 

Sham (4th)

 

94

Enticed

 

Ky Jockey Club (1st)

 

93

Greyvitos

 

Springboard Mile (1st)

 

93

Avery Island

 

Remsen (2nd)

 

93

Tiz Mischief

 

Ky Jockey Club (2nd)

 

93

The Tabulator

 

Iroquois (1st)

 

92

Combatant

 

Southwest (2nd)

 

92

Firenze Fire

 

Withers (2nd)

 

92

Principe Guilherme

 

Lecomte (2nd)

 

92

Enticed

 

Champagne (3rd)

 

92

Snapper Sinclair

 

Lecomte (3rd)

 

92

Free Drop Billy

 

Breeders’ Futurity (1st)

 

91

Combatant

 

Springboard Mile (2nd)

 

91

Hollywood Star

 

Iroquois (2nd)

 

91

Marconi

 

Withers (3rd)

 

91

Vouch

 

Remsen (3rd)

 

91

Promises Fulfilled

 

Ky Jockey Club (3rd)

 

90

Enticed

 

Holy Bull (4th)

 

90