Let’s try to hit the Pick-5 that ends in the Kentucky Derby.
Unfortunately, we have to start with this:
There appears to be a chance that it clears out by the Derby, but there should be some moisture in the track all day. Certainly the turf course will have give.
On Friday’s Oaks card, speed and the rail were excellent, something all the riders eventually figured out, which helped lead to a supersonic pace in the Oaks that completely fell apart. We can’t just assume the rail will be good again, but be sure to pay attention early in the card.
This pick-5 sequence includes five of the six stakes races on Saturday’s card and ends in the Derby. Our key horse is going to be Divisidero in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, the race preceding the Derby itself.
Race 8 – Pat Day Mile – Uncontested is our top selection, but we also want Local Hero, as the two turn back out of the Derby preps in Arkansas and Louisiana respectively. These are both speeds, but we’ll roll the dice, mainly because we really like Uncontested here. We’ll toss in No Dozing, Wild Shot, and Bobby on Fleek as Cs.
A – 4
B – 1
C – 5, 8, 12
Race 9 – American Turf – Big Score is our top selection and we’ll be him to win if he’s at least 5-1, but certainly we won’t be knocked out if either Oscar Performance or Good Samaritan win, as the two favorites are very logical. Of the two, we slightly prefer Oscar Performance, who has more seasoning and a big yielding turf win, but we’re going to use all three. I thought about tossing in Arklow but it’s hard to see him beating all three of the top runners.
A – 2, 4
B – 10
C – none
Race 10 – Churchill Downs Handicap – This race is wide open and we’re taking longshot Bluegrass Singer to upset the field. Certainly, though, we’ll use a bunch in the pick-5 sequence. Limousine Liberal and El Kabeir are our other As. Masochistic and Awesome Slew are Cs.
A – 8, 9, 14
B – none
C – 1, 2
Race 11 – Turf Classic – We’re going to lean on Divisidero in here. He’s poised for a big race at a track where he is 2-2 and in a race that he won last year. He’s drawn well inside and had a seriously troubled trip in his prep last month at Keeneland. Beach Patrol and Ballagh Rocks are both Cs. World Approval can win but we prefer others.
A – 2
B – none
C – 8, 12
Race 12 – Kentucky Derby – The long wait is over. We’ve analyzed the race in great detail (click for a lengthy write-up with thoughts on all 20 horses) and if we can get alive, we’ll take our chances with five horses. Practical Joke is our top pick, but Irish War Cry and Classic Empire are As. J Boys Echo is a B. We don’t want to get knocked out by McCraken if four As win the first four legs, so we’ll use him as a C.
A – 14, 17, 19
B – 13
C – 15
The whole play is $121.50 at 50-cent increments. Here’s the ticket from DRF Ticketmaker.