A pair of Grade 2 turf tests are part of a superb Kentucky Derby (G1) undercard on Saturday at Churchill Downs.
American Turf (G2)
Sophomore boys will run 1 1/16 miles on the lawn chasing a $500,000 purse. Eight will go postward and there is a good measure of early speed in the cast. I will tab a late runner for success.
Audubon S. victor #4 Field Pass (2-1) exits an especially tough race in the Saratoga Derby and should benefit from the class relief in this offering. Mike Maker trainee has never missed the board from a trio of local tries, and he figures to get a fine pace set up to aid his strong late burst. Tyler Gaffalione will be in the stirrups atop the Lemon Drop Kid colt.
I will tab #8 Fancy Liquor (9-2) to complete the all-Maker exacta. Versatile and consistent son of Lookin At Lucky has been in the hunt late in each of his four lifetime races on the sod, and the outside draw could benefit him and jockey Florent Geroux.
- $5 Trifecta: 4 with 8 with all ($30)
- $2 Trifecta: 8 with 4 with all ($12)
Churchill Downs Distaff Turf Mile (G2)
Even though there is other pace in this $500,000 affair for fillies and mares, #4 Newspaperofrecord (4-5) will be tough to upend with anything resembling her top performance. Chad Brown pupil has been dominant in two starts in 2020, and she is also a Grade 1 winner on the course. Filly has little value in the win pool, so I will go for the vertical exotics with her on top.
#1 She’sonthewarpath (15-1) has been first or second in four of her last five starts, and the lone time she was out of the exacta was when she finished a half-length back in fourth in the Mint Julep (G3) on this lawn. Steve Margolis trainee will save ground throughout the 1-mile affair before putting in her solid late kick.
- $20 Exacta: 4 with 1 ($20)
- $3 Trifecta: 4 with all with 1 ($18)