Horse > Bravazo
Bravazo (Hodges Photography)
Bravao Career Statistics
Last Update: June 2018
Non-Restricted Stakes Earnings: $736,528
Owner: Calumet Farm
Trainer: D. Wayne Lukas
Jockey: Gary Stevens
Pedigree: Awesome Again – Tiz O’ Gold, by Cee’z Tizzy
Recent Finish: 2nd, Preakness Stakes, G2 (5/19/18)
Notable Wins: Risen Star S. (G2)
Bravazo Horse Profile
Bravazo enters the Belmont Stakes with a record of 3-2-1 in 10 starts. The D. Wayne Lukas-trained colt finished 6th in the Kentucky Derby and a sharp-closing 2nd in the Preakness Stakes. He gained rapidly in the deep stretch and was running the fastest of all horses to finish a half-length behind with winner Justify in the Preakness at 15-1 odds. Bravazo has run his best races when he’s settled just off the early pace, and he was three lengths off the Preakness lead through six furlongs before making a late burst to the finish. His pedigree suggests he can go the longer distance of the Belmont and outrun his long odds again.
Bravazo Entering the Kentucky Derby
Considering Bravazo was bet down below 3-1, it was the most disappointing race of his career. Jockey Gary Stevens says Bravazo was lugging out the entire race and the horse was fighting him and he never had momentum. Both his BRIS (76) speed and Beyer (64) were terrible in that race. Jockey Gary Stevens is not the definite rider of Bravazo in the Derby, and a late decision will be made by trainer D. Wayne Lukas. Miguel Mena did ride Bravazo to his best finish and race in the Risen Star.
Calumet Farm has produced a record eight Derby winners, but Bravazo will not be the ninth. His speed doesn’t match-up with a majority of the runners in the Derby, and as a stalker or near the front runner, he won’t hold up against stronger horses going a longer distance.
Bravazo did break his maiden at Churchill Downs and raced two other times over the track last year including 10th in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2) more than 10 lengths behind the winner Enticed. His victory in the Risen Star by a nose in February provided promise, but that race now looks more like a fluke with the setup and pace, along with his 21-1 odds in winning. The early speed was slow in that race, and Bravazo didn’t have to expend much early energy. That won’t be the case in the Derby with so many more horses pressing the pace.
Key Speed Figures and Stats for Bravazo
- Final 3/8 mile time in the Louisiana Derby :41.85 seconds
- Best BRIS Speed and Class Rating of 98 in Risen Star Stakes
Bravazo is by the 1998 Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1) winner Awesome Again. He has become a very good sire, but the female family is mostly sprint biased. With Bravazo tiring and lugging in his last race, there is concern about going the Classic distance.
Each of the last six Kentucky Derby winners – and 16 of the last 21 – ran the last three-eighths of their final Derby prep race in less than 38 seconds. Bravazo ran a final 3/8 mile time of :41.85 in the Louisiana Derby, an awful finishing time and very poor race.
Also, horses that finished worse than 4th in their final Derby prep are very poor bets to cash in the Derby. Since 1992, 60 horses fit that profile and none have won the Derby with just two hitting the board and finishing third.
Bravazo will be a huge long shot in the Derby, and he’s a toss from winning or hitting the board.
More on Bravazo
As a home grown product of Calumet Farm, who have retained his rights, Bravazo has been a wonderful surprise overall. The Awesome Again colt has arrived on the Derby scene with an interesting pedigree, but he failed to put together the consistency that horse players prefer. Bravazo did, however, post the largest upset in Kentucky Derby prep-race betting this year.
Going off as a 21/1 longshot in the 2018 Risen Star Stakes, Bravazo came alive with a heroic effort that helped him beat fellow pace setter Snapper Sinclair and hyped top choice Noble Indy. His stock, however, seemingly decreased by his effort in the 2018 Louisiana Derby where he finished a distant eighth overall.
With $436,528 in career earnings through 8 starts, with a 3-1-1 record, Bravazo will likely continue to be led out with the hope of hitting the jackpot but it’s hard to tell with questions of consistency. On his best day, he can run with the elite talent in the country.