With the Kentucky Derby (G1) still several weeks away, we are going to spend the time analyzing the pedigree for some of the top contenders.
This week’s subject: Tiz the Law
He burst onto the scene as a 2-year-old, dominating the Champagne Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park, and even after falling short in the Kentucky Jockey Club (G2), expectations were still through the roof heading into 2020. He began the year winning the Holy Bull Stakes (G3) and the Florida Derby (G1) before being favored to win the Belmont Stakes.
Tiz the Law shares the same connections as the 2003 Kentucky Derby (G1) and Preakness (G1) winner Funny Cide, who finished third in his Triple Crown quest. On June 20, trainer Barclay Tagg and owner Sackatoga Stable finally got their elusive Belmont Stakes (G1) victory when Tiz the Law crossed the wire first to improve his record to 6-5-0-1 with $1,480,300 earned.
Kentucky Derby Ranking
With three flawless performances this year, Tiz the Law is now the Kentucky Derby points leader with 272, courtesy of winning the Holy Bull, the Florida Derby, and the Belmont. The most recent NTRA poll put Tiz the Law clearly atop the divisional rankings, but even with that level of support, his pedigree must be examined.
Major career wins: 2014 Florida Derby (G1), 2015 Donn Handicap (G1)
After a thrilling victory in the 2014 Florida Derby, Constitution was sidelined and missed the entirety of the Triple Crown trail, but in his 4-year-old debut, he won the Donn (now known as the Pegasus World Cup) over the defending champion Lea. While he was a two-time Grade 1 winner at the 1 1/8-mile distance, Constitution carried the stigma that he was just a horse for the course at Gulfsteam Park, where he was a perfect 4-for-4 in his career; anywhere else, his record was 4-0-0-1.
As a stallion, Constitution’s progeny have won at tracks all over the United States, and his bloodline explains why.
Constitution is one of the 25 Grade 1 winners sired by Tapit, one of the world’s desired stallions who currently stands for $200,000. Historically, this bloodline – which includes Pulpit, A. P. Indy, and the 1977 Triple Crown winner Seattle Slew – has had no issues routing.
Tapit himself has yet to sire a Kentucky Derby winner, but he has had multiple top-five finishes in that event and has bred three champions of the Belmont Stakes (Tonalist in 2014, Creator in 2016, and Tapwrit in 2017). Additionally, Tapit has sired at least one Kentucky Derby start since 2012.
Major career wins: San Gorgonio Handicap (G2)
A winner of 7 races, including the San Gorgonio (now the Robert J. Frankel Stakes) which was contested at 1 1/8 miles on turf, Tizfiz earned over $400,000. She has been just as successful as a broodmare, with three of her five racing-age foals finding the winner’s circle and earning over $1.8 million.
Her sire, the Hall of Famer Tiznow, remains the only horse to win the Breeders’ Cup Classic twice (2000 and 2001) and has been a successful general sire – though he has not had much Kentucky Derby success.
Tizfiz’s dam, Gin Running, has had six foals make the starting gate, with five winners including two at the graded stakes level. Both of those (Tizfiz and Fury Kapcori) were sired by Tiznow and won their graded stakes while routing.
Based on his pedigree, Tiz the Law’s is unsurprising. Both bloodlines have produced proven graded stakes winners while going two turns. Tiz the Law is the real deal and a legit Kentucky Derby contender.
Time will tell if he can join Funny Cide as the only New York-breds to win the Run for the Roses, but with one leg of the Triple Crown already captured, the sky seems to be the limit for what he can (and will) do.
Let me know what you think!