With the Kentucky Derby (G1) finally nearing, we are going to continue analyzing the pedigrees of some of the top contenders.

This week’s subject: Basin

Basin has yet to find the winner’s circle as a 3-year-old, though with a career record of 6-2-2-1, the Hopeful Stakes (G1) winner has been one of the more consistent horses in this class. He was last seen finishing second behind Charlatan in the first division of the Arkansas Derby (G1) and drew post 8 for Saturday’s Blue Grass Stakes (G2) at Keeneland.

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Kentucky Derby Ranking

Although winless in 2020, Basin already has earned enough points to make the Kentucky Derby starting gate, currently tied for ninth with 50 points. He is undoubtedly talented, but the jury is still out regarding his ability to handle two turns at the graded stakes level.

“His heart is bigger than his body,” said owner Jackpot Farm’s Ryne Poncik. “He’s not a big, big colt, but he’ll never give up until the end. He won’t give up until he passes the wire, for sure.”

Sire Profile

Liam’s Map

Major career wins: 2015 Woodward (G1) and 2015 Breeders’ Cup Dirt Mile (G1)

2015 was the year of American Pharoah, so if you were not following horse racing closely, then you probably missed Liam’s Map’s greatness. He had a front-running style and the fractions that he set in both the 2015 Whitney (G1) and the Woodward had many people believing that he horse could give Triple Crown winner American Pharoah a challenge in the Breeders’ Cup Classic (G1).

Liam’s Map did not debut until August of his 3-year-old season and never got a chance to run the 1 1/4-mile Kentucky Derby distance, his pedigree suggests that he could have handled it. This is his first crop of 3-year-olds, so he is still an unknown as a sire, but based on his breeding, he should be a success. 

Liam’s Map was sired by Unbridled’s Song, a very solid sire. His progeny of G1 route winners include Will Take Charge (2013 Travers Stakes) and Arrogate (2016 Travers Stakes, 2016 Breeders’ Cup Classic, and 2017 Dubai World Cup).

Unbridled’s Song’s bloodline goes all the way back to the great Mr. Prospector, which seems to be a common trend among this year’s top Kentucky Derby contenders. The recent Los Alamitos Derby (G3) winner Uncle Chuck has Unbridled’s Song’s bloodline on his dam’s side.

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Dam Profile

Appenzell

Major career wins: None

With a career record of 13-2-0-5, Appenzell was not much of a runner, but she has excelled as a broodmare. Of her nine foals, seven made the starting gate and all won, including two in graded stakes: Basin won the 2019 Hopeful and Rise Up won the 2013 Delta Downs Jackpot (G3). In total, her foals have earned over $1.9 million.

Appenzell’s sire, Johannesburg, runs though the Storm Cat bloodline, which is also found in Honor A. P and Charlatan, and her dam side runs though Mr. Prospector as well.

Basin winning the Hopeful (Credit: NYRA)

Basin has been very consistent his entire career, but he still needs to improve if he is going to be a legitimate Kentucky Derby contender. He will have the opportunity to prove himself in the Blue Grass.

As of right now, Basin is not a serious win contender and should only be used to end trifectas and superfectas.

Let me know what you think!

Vinny Blond is a New York-based handicapper who is one half of Real Dynasty Picks. Follow him on Twitter @PicksByDynasty.