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It’s that special time of year when all we’re doing is analyzing the Kentucky Derby (G1) in every way imaginable. While everyone else is trying to pick a winner, I’ll start with a different angle: I’m going to throw out five horses with NO CHANCE of winning on the first Saturday in May.
This seems like an easy task, but this year’s field is WIDE OPEN. Could this be the year I make a fatal mistake? There’s no doubt I’ll get burned one of these years, but it hasn’t happened yet!
When I did this five years ago, I listed Shagaf (finished 20th), Trojan Nation (16th), Tom’s Ready (12th), My Man Sam (11th), and Majesto (18th). Four years ago was successful as well, but it did get scary down the stretch, as the list included Lookin At Lee (second), Battle of Midway (third), Gormley (ninth), Untrapped (12th), and Patch (14th).
Three years ago, another successful article listed Combatant (18th), Promises Fulfilled (15th), Firenze Fire (11th), Lone Sailor (eighth), and Bravazo (sixth). Two years ago, it worked out well again as the article listed Master Fencer (sixth), Plus Que Parfait (eighth), Spinoff (19th), Tax (14th), and Haikal (scratched).
Last year, it worked again as the article listed Winning Impression (12th), Finnick the Fierce (scratched), Necker Island (ninth), Storm the Court (sixth), and Major Fed (10th).
Here are the five horses who I believe have NO SHOT to win this year’s Kentucky Derby:
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He couldn’t get the job done against much weaker competition at Tampa Bay Downs, then was no match for the top runners in the Blue Grass Stakes (G2) last time out. His Tampa Bay Derby (G2) loss was really frustrating because he looked like a winner but let Helium get past in the late stages. Winning a race like this seems highly unlikely.
Helium Upsets Tampa Bay Derby
The Kentucky Derby will be his third race off of the layoff, which is good, but this horse hasn’t shown enough this year to warrant much interest. He finished off the board after a rough trip in the Rebel Stakes (G2) and was a lackluster fourth in the Arkansas Derby (G1), where his biggest problem was that even though the three pace horses came home very slow, this late-running closer couldn’t pass any of them.
Super Stock’s Arkansas Derby Win True Family Affair
The Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) was elevated to a 100-point race this season; however, that doesn’t mean it’s going to produce great Kentucky Derby prospects. There is no doubt Like the King enjoys running on synthetic, but his 2 dirt efforts were not good. He’ll need to run the highest speed figure of his career by a wide margin to have any chance in this race; that seem unlikely.
Like The King Rallies To Take Jeff Ruby
If I don’t like the winner of the Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3), then I’m not going to like the runner-up much, either. Sainthood actually took a giant step forward in that race, running extremely well in his first start on synthetic. He probably has more room to improve, but I don’t think dirt is his best surface. Play him later this season on synthetic or turf, which is what his pedigree strongly suggests will be best.
Bourbonic Bombs Wood Memorial
It’s definitely scary to list two horses like Sainthood and Dynamic One, who both have incredible connections from trainer (Todd Pletcher) and owner standpoints. However, it’s hard to take anything seriously out of this year’s Wood Memorial (G2), with Bourbonic winning at 72/1 and this horse finishing second at 15/1. Dynamic One seems like he could have a decent season at the lower stakes levels, but this spot seems a bit too tough. He’ll need a huge speed figure jump, too.
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