The $200,000 Iroquois (G3) will be run Saturday at Churchill Downs (Race 10) as part of a spectacular Kentucky Derby (G1) undercard. Open to 2-year-olds, the Iroquois will be run as a 1-turn mile on the main track, offering the foals of 2018 an early opportunity to stretch out in distance.
Top Picks for the Iroquois
- #7 Pico d’Oro
- #3 Super Stock
- #10 Therideofalifetime
- #8 Midnight Bourbon
Betting the Iroquois
- $20 win – 7
- $10 ex – 3, 8, 10 with 7
#1 Drop Anchor (15-1) rallied from far off the pace to win going away in his career debut at Ellis Park. The time was not that fast, but he showed he can pass horses willingly. Since then trainer Kenny McPeek has gotten a pair of 5-furlong breezes into him, and being out of a dam by Curlin should give Drop Enough enough pedigree for this distance.
#2 Sittin On Go (15-1) broke his maiden in hand after he rallied from seven lengths down to win by over four lengths in his well-bet career debut going 5 furlongs at Ellis. A mile is a big difference from 5 furlongs and he returns on only three weeks of rest. The time of his win was not that fast, and he will have to show more than the normal improvement young horses typically make in their second career start.
#3 Super Stock (6-1) did nothing in his career debut in a turf sprint at Keeneland but he then shipped to Lone Star where he just missed on the dirt going 5 1/2 furlongs. That race was good enough for Steve Asmussen to try him in the Texas Futurity, and Super Stock won easily after showing good speed away from the gate. In his fourth career start, he’s asked to stretch out, but he seems to have the seasoning to do it.
#4 Ultimate Badger (12-1) broke his maiden by over four lengths in his well-bet career debut going 5 furlongs over a sloppy track at Ellis Park. Dale Romans was able to get three breezes into him since then, and the son of long-winded Commissioner is out of a dam who won twice as a 2-year-old.
#5 Dreamer’s Disease (12-1) showed little in his career debut on the dirt, but woke up in his turf debut when he went gate-to-wire by four lengths. That was around two turns, so he’s answered that question, and now we’ll see if he can do it on the dirt. His debut was so bad, I don’t think it proved that he doesn’t like the dirt. He’ll get another chance today.
#6 Belafonte (20-1) looked very professional when he rallied from far back to win going away on a muddy Ellis track going 7 furlongs. He was 49-1 that day and it’s hard to determine how much the wet track helped him. Son of Tonalist should have no trouble with the distance and blinkers are added.
#7 Pico d’Oro (5-1) has improved in all three career starts. He was a good second two starts back, then contested the Juvenile S. at Ellis going 7 furlongs and rallied four-wide from way back to win going away in decent time. He has trained well since then at Trackside Training Center for Bill Morey, who wins 26% first time going long and 22% first start after a win. Javier Castellano picks up the mount.
#8 Midnight Bourbon (6-1) showed high speed when third in his well-bet career debut going a mile at Ellis, then came back there and romped by five lengths. Son of Tiznow tries stakes company for Steve Asmussen, who wins 22% first start after a maiden win and 20% with his overall 2-year-old starters.
#9 Crazy Shot (15-1) was a narrow winner in his career debut going 5 furlongs at Ellis in an average time, so I don’t see how he can make the move up in class and distance for Rusty Arnold, who is usually very conservative.
#10 Therideofalifetime (7-5) was a good second here in his career debut going 5 furlongs. He bounced back to break his maiden in a fast time at Keeneland, then shipped to Saratoga where he was a good second behind Jackie’s Warrior, who beat him in his debut. Son of Candy Ride tries a mile for the first time and has enough experience to do it.
#11 Notary (12-1) did nothing in his career debut going 6 furlongs, then stretched out to a mile at Ellis and won easily after pressing the pace every step. The pace and final time were not that fast, so even though he showed he can get a mile, he will have to improve a lot.