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Chad Brown, the No. 1 trainer in North America by earnings, with nearly $22.6 million in purses, sent three horses, Beach Patrol, Camelot Kitten and Annals of Time, for Saturday’s Grade 1 $300,000 Hollywood Derby.
Combined, Brown’s group for the Hollywood Derby, at 1 1/8 miles on the turf for 3-year-olds, has five graded stakes victories in 2016. Beach Patrol won the Grade 1 Secretariat, on the Arlington Million Day card, and was in the midst of a 1-2-3 finish for Brown charges, Camelot Kitten winning and Annals of Time third, in the Grade 3 Hill Prince on October 8 at Belmont Park in their last outings.
“Everything went well, all the horses shipped in nicely,” said Cherie DeVaux, Brown’s assistant who will be in charge on site while Brown remains in New York. “They’ve all been in good form all year and have trained well before coming out here. Hopefully that maintains into the races.
“Beach Patrol and Camelot Kitten are obviously the more accomplished of the three, but Annals of Time has been developing into a really nice horse. They all deserve to be respected. It’s the same in the Matriarch, three really nice fillies that have been running well and training very well.”
Three New York-based riders that rank in the Top Five for North American purse earnings are traveling to pilot Brown’s horses. Javier Castellano, the No. 1 jockey in North America for purse earnings with $26.1 million, will ride Annals of Time. Irad Ortiz, Jr., (No. 2, $22.3 million) will be on Camelot Kitten. Florent Geroux (No. 5, $16.8 million) has Beach Patrol.
The Hollywood Derby field from the rail: Beach Patrol (Florent Geroux, 9-2), Camelot Kitten (Irad Ortiz, Jr., 7-2), Frank Conversation (Mario Gutierrez, 8-1), Diplodocus (Kent Desormeaux, 20-1), Free Rose (Norberto Arroyo, Jr., 5-1), Isotherm (John Velazquez, 12-1), Blackjackcat (Mike Smith, 8-1), Hayabusa One (Victor Espinoza, 6-1), Revved Up (Drayden Van Dyke, 20-1), Defiantly (Gary Stevens, 30-1), Annals of Time (Javier Castellano, 6-1) and Path of David (Joe Talamo, 30-1).
#2 Camelot Kitten – This horse has had quite the year winning four of seven races with all four of the wins coming against graded stakes company. He’s never one that is going to blow you away with his talent, but he just keeps grinding and finds a way to win. The quality of being able to find the wire first outweighs any other factor in racing, and obviously with Chad Brown on his side it bolsters his chances even more. Look for him to show up with his race just like always with the only question mark being how the east coast will match up with the west coast.
#1 Beach Patrol – It’s Chad Brown’s world…we’re just living in it. It was tough to distinguish between the two top entries he has in this race, and his third entry Annals of Time isn’t too bad either. Beach Patrol has many things going his way, but the fact he’s had a couple of cracks at Camelot Kitten this year and has finished second to him makes it tough for me to want to pick him on top today. Still, Beach Patrol is a “no-brainer” to use in all multi race wagers.
#5 Free Rose – Basically I’ve listed the top three finishers of the Grade 2 Twilight Derby in this section as well as one Chad Brown horse. The Twilight Derby came back as a very strong race, and actually drew five horses into this race. The top three ran exceptional in that race on Breeders’ Cup Friday, and Free Rose was second out of those three. Before that race he had won a Grade 2 and Grade 3, and was only beaten a half length in the Twilight Derby by a huge longshot. Fits in here very well with this bunch.
#3 Frank Conversation – Impressive winner of the Twilight Derby at an eye popping 36-1! This horse had ran in some top quality races without much luck, but for whatever reason he ran a huge race last time out. In his last three races he was beaten by nearly a combined fifty lengths so you can see how this performance came out of left field. We’ll see if he can match that race once again, or if he bounces off of that big effort.
#7 Blackjackcat – Ran third in the world famous Twilight Derby that I keep referring to throughout this section of the preview, and was just nosed out for second place while only losing to the winner Frank Conversation by half of a length. Also ran third on the dirt in the Los Alamitos Derby, and ran a close sixth in a tough turf race before that at Del Mar. So the class is there, and he’s been running with some of the best turf three year olds in California. Could be time for this horse to break through with Mike Smith aboard.
NONE – Rarely do I not have a horse in this section. However, this time I don’t see a horse that has very little hope of winning but could still hit the board. When playing exotics it might be a better race to box all your bets rather than keying horses in the third and fourth spot.
#11 Annals of Time – The ultimate “other” Chad Brown play that sometimes can pay off big time on the east coast so we’ll see if it can now happen on the west coast. Annals of Time has only raced three times, but last time out he was competitive with Beach Patrol and Camelot Kitten as Chad Brown had the trifecta in the Grade 3 Hill Prince at Belmont Park. If this horse can improve off that effort he’ll be in with a shot, and he will be a much bigger price than the two of them. Very scary and intriguing entry by Brown here.
#8 Hayabusa One – It’s impossible to know how high the ceiling could be with this horse as he’s ran only once in the United States. That one race was a very impressive effort though as he blew out an allowance field at Keeneland by three and a half lengths. It’s not wise to doubt a great trainer like Motion, and you also have to like that he’s gotten a solid local jockey signed on to ride. This is not they type of horse I like to take a short price on, but if he ends up with decent odds he’s worth a play.
#12 Path of David – Just hasn’t looked real competitive so far this year against many of the horses that are entered in this field today. Probably not fast enough to make an impact.
#4 Diplodocus – Has had an up and down year, but is a horse that at times can jump up and run a big race. He probably needs a little bit of class relief, but he’s not totally without a chance here with the right trip. Still have to prefer others a bit more.
#6 Isotherm – There is no doubt he’s classy enough, but is he good enough? His races this year have left a lot to be desired, especially lately. He’ll have to improve quite a bit here to match up with some very good horses.
#9 Revved Up – Pretty consistent runner who has had a lot of success against allowance company this year, but his lone graded stakes effort was a fifth place finish against softer competition than what he’ll match up with in this spot.
#10 Defiantly – Seems to lack a little bit in the speed figure department compared to the others in this race. Also, even though he won a stakes last time out it was a smaller one so he may not be ready for this kind of class test just yet.
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