Kentucky Derby Context: Super Stock

April 19th, 2021 horse racing analyst James Scully attended his first Kentucky Derby in 1981. Along with a brief profile of this year’s contenders, he is providing some historical context.

Super Stock broke through in the Arkansas Derby (G1), earning a spot in the Kentucky Derby field with a 12-1 upset at Oaklawn Park.

Trained by Hall of Famer Steve Asmussen, the bay colt has special meaning for the Asmussen family. He’s co-owned by the trainer’s parents, Keith and Marilyn Asmussen. And Steve’s son, Keith, registered his first stakes win as a jockey with Super Stock, capturing the Texas Thoroughbred Futurity at Lone Star Park last summer.

Nashville music manager Erv Woolsey also co-owns the three-year-old, and Ricardo Santana Jr. will ride in the Kentucky Derby.

Super Stock finished third in a pair of points-qualifying races last fall, the Breeders’ Futurity (G1) and Iroquois S. (G3). He opened 2021 with a non-threatening fourth in the Rebel S. (G2) in mid-March.

He took a step forward in the Arkansas Derby. Circumstances were favorable, as Super Stock settled behind a pair of frontrunners who were winging it during the early stages. After being guided out for a clear path in the stretch, Super Stock rallied to win going away by 2 1/2 lengths.

It’s a short three-week turnaround to the Kentucky Derby. And Super Stock may have to work out a trip from a little farther off the pace. But his arrow certainly appears to be pointing up.

The stalker is a candidate to make his presence felt in the stretch at Churchill Downs.

Super Stock is by Dialed In, who was favored at 5-1 in the 2011 Kentucky Derby after winning the Florida Derby (G1). A two-time graded stakes winner, Dialed In utilized late-running tactics in previous starts, but he found himself too far back after being breaking poorly in the Kentucky Derby.

Still trailing in 19th midway down the backstretch, Dialed In made up a lot of ground over the final three-eighths of a mile, rallying past more than half the field, but could do no better than eighth after the rough start.

Super Stock will look to give Dialed In a Kentucky Derby win as a sire.