How to bet with, and against, Shoot It True in the Kentucky Juvenile

April 29th, 2024

Dynamic debut winner #7 Shoot It True (7-5) is the morning-line selection for Thursday’s $250,000 Kentucky Juvenile S. at Churchill Downs. The Wesley Ward pupil dominated his foes at 2-5 odds at Keeneland last time out and could be any kind of prospect going forward. Purchased for $340,000 as a yearling, the daughter of Munnings beat the boys at first asking by running them off their feet from the start and is a logical candidate to do so once again in her first try beneath the Twin Spires.

Shoot It True – With

Shoot It True – Against

  • $30 to win on #9 Mensa ($30)
  • $5 Trifecta: key 9 with 1,7 ($10)

The New York-bred is in the right hands with Ward, she has posted a pair of morning drills in advance of this stakes run, and her post position seems to be an ideal one drawn well off the rail. She will be formidable with a repeat showing with Tyler Gaffalione retaining the ride. 

It’s difficult for me to be too creative in the race as second choice #9 Mensa (5-1) seems like the most likely upsetter in the dash, and deservedly so following a sharp fleet first-out victory at Gulfstream Park. Conditioned by Mark Casse, the dark bay son of Complexity drew the rail in his unveiling but overcame that tricky slot by gunning to the front and never looking back en route to a three-length score. 

Mensa defeated what I thought might be a solid field of prospects in that heat, and the Florida-bred gets an excellent starting gate on the outside of the cast for this contest, as well. His last pair of siblings were stakes horses at two and the April foal could be better than both of those. Jose Ortiz picks up the mount and will track the favorite throughout. 

For the vertical exotics, I’ll go outside of the box and tab #1 Tuxedo Park (8-1) for a positive showing at a price. This Complexity colt was a clear second in his Keeneland debut, and while he had no apparent excuse for finishing behind a smart Ward prospect, the colt also didn’t do much wrong for solid two-year-old conditioner Paul McEntee. The chestnut will have to overcome the rail, but I’ll include him for value.