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Kentucky Derby Contenders Pedigree Analysis: King Guillermo
King Guillermo working at Churchill Downs (Credit: Coady Photography)

Kentucky Derby Contenders Pedigree Analysis: King Guillermo

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

The final subject in this series: King Guillermo

Since switching to dirt as a 3-year-old. King Guillermo has shown that he can run on any surface. He’s very lightly-raced compared to most of the Kentucky Derby (G1) field; the big race will be just his sixth career start and third of the year.

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Kentucky Derby Ranking

King Guillermo finished sixth in the Kentucky Derby point standings with 90 points. He earned 50 of those for upsetting the Tampa Bay Derby (G2) and the other 40 for running a very game second behind Nadal in the second division of the Arkansas Derby (G1).

His connections originally intended to go from the Tampa Bay Derby into the Kentucky Derby, but with the Run for the Roses rescheduled to September, he’s been unraced since early May.

Sire Profile

Uncle Mo

Major career wins: 2010 Champagne Stakes (G1), 2010 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1), 2011 Kelso Handicap (G2)

As discussed in my pedigree analysis of Uncle Chuck , Uncle Mo was a very good racehorse who made an immediate and lasting impact as a stallion. His first crop included the 2016 Kentucky Derby winner Nyquist, along with two other Derby starters that year (Mo Tom, Outwork). King Guillermo will be Uncle Mo’s only 2020 Derby, as Caracaro recently defected with an injury and Pneumatic is aiming for the Preakness Stakes (G1). Modernist also qualified based on points, but he hasn’t worked since July.

Uncle Mo’s progeny continue to impress on both turf and dirt, making him one of North America’s top stallions. Just two weekends ago, Harvest Moon won the Torrey Pines Stakes (G3) on dirt and Mo Forza won the Del Mar Mile Handicap (G2) on the turf. His progeny continue to impress on the track, a positive sign for King Guillermo’s supporters.

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Dam Profile

Slow Sand

Major career wins: None

Slow Sand finished off the board in her only 2 career starts, but with her damsire being the 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew, she was bound to be a desirable broodmare. While she never showed it on the racetrack, her bloodline suggests that routing should be easily handled.

She has had mild success as a broodmare, with six of her 10 foals to race finding victory. None have been as successful as King Guillermo, but she has had nine foals sell for over $1.2 million combined.

King Guillermo is her only North American starter to date; her previous five foals that started and won did so in Europe. Her current 2-year-old foal, Magic Man, is by the 2015 Triple Crown champion American Pharoah; he only breeds quality mares.

King-Guillermo winning the Tampa Bay Derby (Credit: SV Photography)

King Guillermo looks like a serious Kentucky Derby contender on paper.  There is some serious concern about the long layoff, as he has not run since May 2, and to beat Tiz the Law and Art Collector (the top two Derby betting choices), he will need to run the best race of his career. Still, there is the possibly that he takes a step forward, and he has become this year’s “Wise Guy” horse.

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.

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