The Kentucky Derby anchors an All-Stakes Pick 4 I will be playing. Here are my thoughts on the sequence:
Race 9, American Turf (G2)
#11 Untamed Domain should appreciate the return to turf for Graham Motion and rates a slight edge. I will also use #6 River Boyne, who has won three straight out west for Jeff Mullins, prominently.
#1 Speed Franco, #2 Inscom, #3 Threeandfourpence, #9 Captivating Moon and #10 Maraud will be added to a ticket.
Race 10, Pat Day Mile (G3)
#8 Mask won’t offer value for straight bets but looks like the most likely winner in the sequence in my estimation. I will key him on a pair of tickets and save with #1 National Flag, #11 Sporting Chance and #12 Restoring Hope.
Race 11, Old Forester Turf Classic (G1)
#6 Arklow is my upset special – he showed a true affinity for a Churchill Downs’ turf with some give to it when defeating a stellar field in last year’s American Turf and the 4yo makes his third start off the layoff for top trainer Brad Cox after finishing second in the Muniz Memorial (G2). All systems go today.
Breeders’ Cup Turf (G1) runner-up #10 Beach Patrol is the class and the only other horse I want for my tickets.
Race 12, Kentucky Derby
#14 Mendelssohn invades off a stellar performance in the U.A.E. Derby (G2) and I think the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1) winner is much better on dirt. The main concern is the trip and given his tactical speed, Ryan Moore should be able to establish good positioning if the Scat Daddy colt breaks. I am tabbing Mendelssohn to win the 2018 Kentucky Derby.
#4 Flameaway, #5 Audible and #7 Justify are back-ups.
Pick 4 Tickets (races 9-12)
$1 Pick 4: 1,2,3,6,9,10,11 with 1,8,11,12 with 6,10 with 14 ($56)
$1 Pick 4: 6,11 with 8 with 6,10 with 4,5,7,14 ($16)