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Racing Dudes Kentucky Derby Rankings 6/17/20: Pre-Belmont Rankings
Tiz the Law winning the Florida Derby (Credit: Coglianese Photos / Ryan Thompson)

Racing Dudes Kentucky Derby Rankings 6/17/20: Pre-Belmont Rankings

Welcome to the 2020 Kentucky Derby Rankings! Each week leading up to the race, we will provide our Top 20 Kentucky Derby Prospects, as well as updates with the latest news on each horse. You can also visit our Kentucky Derby page for loads of information, including the latest news, rankings, prep race schedules, the Kentucky Derby point standings, and much more!

Though the Kentucky Derby moved to Saturday, September 5, we’ll still come at you with updates along the way, as well as the latest news on the race. Here’s our latest Top 20 heading into the Belmont Stakes (G1)

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1. Tiz the Law 

Derby Points/Rank: 122 – 1st

Race Record: (5) 4-0-1

Earnings: $945,300

Breeding: Constitution – Tizfiz (Tiznow)

Owner: Sackatoga Stable 

Trainer: Barcaly Tagg

Last Race: 1st, Florida Derby (G1) at Gulfstream Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Magic Mike 

Analysis: He turned the Florida Derby (G1) into a romp over one of the better fields of the season. His running style is perfect for the Kentucky Derby, while he’s shown his consistency this season. We also haven’t seen the best from him yet as he has won both of his races this season under wraps. He will be a heavy favorite this weekend in the Belmont Stakes (G1).

2. Honor A. P.

Derby Points/Rank: 120 – 2nd

Race Record: (4) 2-2-0

Earnings: $362,200

Breeding: Honor Code – Hollywood Story (Wild Rush)

Owner: C R K Stable LLC

Trainer: John Shirreffs 

Last Race: 1st, Santa Anita Derby (G1) at Santa Anita Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Jon White and Ryan Stillman

Analysis: Wow, his Santa Anita Derby (G1) was ultra-impressive, making him the logical challenger to Tiz the Law for early favoritism in the Derby. There is no doubt Honor A. P. is going to continue to flourish as the distances get longer. His solid turn of foot will be tough to hold off on that long Churchill Downs stretch. Trainer John Shirreffs will have him ready to pop with a monster race when the big day is finally here. 

3. Authentic 

Derby Points/Rank: 100 – 3rd

Race Record: (4) 3-1-0

Earnings: $411,200

Breeding: Into Mischief – Flawless (Mr. Greeley)

Owner: SF Racing LLC, Starlight Racing, Madaket Stables LLC, Frederick Hertrich, John Fielding, and Golconda Stabels 

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Last Race: 2nd, Santa Anita Derby (G1) at Santa Anita Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Aaron Halterman 

Analysis: He suffered the first defeat of his career in the Santa Anita Derby (G1), finishing second behind Honor A. P. He still was able to run a respectable race, though, and all the injuries to the top horses has helped him remain highly ranked. He still has some maturity issues he needs to get through, which helped lead to his downfall last time out. He’s still very much in the mix if he can do what so many have not been able to accomplish: stay healthy. Look for him next in the Haskell Stakes (G1) at Monmouth Park on July 18. 

4. Sole Volante  

Derby Points/Rank: 30 – 14th 

Race Record: (6) 4-1-1

Earnings: $293,310

Breeding: Karakontie – Light Blow (Kingmambo)

Owner: Reeves Thoroughbred Racing, Andie Biancone, and Limelight Stable Corp.

Trainer: Patrick Biancone 

Last Race: 1st, Allowance Race at Gulfstream Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Real Dynasty 

Analysis: He backed up his performance in the Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) with solid runner-up finish in the Tampa Bay Derby (G2). Recently, he also won a sharp allowance race at Gulfstream Park, without being asked for his best. He seems to be set up well for the Belmont Stakes (G1) this weekend and will be the logical second choice to the heavily favored Tiz the Law.  

5. King Guillermo  

Derby Points/Rank: 90 – 4th

Race Record: (5) 2-1-1

Earnings: $340,350

Breeding: Uncle Mo – Slow Sand (Dixieland Band)

Owner: Victoria’s Ranch

Trainer: Juan Carlos Avila 

Last Race: 2nd, Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Austin and Evil Steveil   

Analysis: It’s funny that we were all skeptical of this horse after he won the Tampa Bay Derby (G2); however, now we all believe in him after losing division 2 of the Arkansas Derby (G1). His loss showed that he can repeat that top effort, though, when finishing a solid second to the powerful Nadal. We now know to take this horse very seriously moving forward; however, it would be nice to see him in a race before the Kentucky Derby, which doesn’t seem to be the plan.

6. Cezanne  

Derby Points/Rank: 0 – NR

Race Record: (1) 1-0-0

Earnings: $30,000

Breeding: Curlin – Achieving (Bernardini) 

Owner: Mrs. John Magnier, Michael Tabor, Derrick Smith, and St. Elias Stable

Trainer: Bob Baffert

Last Race: 1st, Maiden Special Weight at Santa Anita Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Paul “Free Beers” Withrow 

Analysis: This heavily-hyped colt finally made his debut at Santa Anita, where he impressive defeated his rivals sprinting. He should be even better when stretching out in distance, which is something that will happen next time out. It looks like he still has some catching up to do; however, with several of the top horses injured that task looks a little easier with each passing day. 

7. Tap It to Win

Derby Points/Rank: 0 – NR

Race Record: (6) 3-1-0

Earnings: $124,672

Breeding: Tapit – Onepointhreekarats (Medaglia d’Oro)

Owner: Live Oak Plantation  

Trainer: Mark Casse  

Last Race: 1st, Allowance Race at Belmont Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Jon White/Ryan Stillman  

Analysis: After two straight allowance wins, he’ll give stakes company another try this weekend in the Belmont Stakes (G1). His blowout win over the track last time out earned him a 97 Beyer, which makes him competitive with the group of horses pointing for that race. He also has solid early speed, making him even more dangerous. 

8. Basin

Derby Points/Rank: 50 – 8th

Race Record: (6) 2-2-1

Earnings: $471,000

Breeding: Liam’s Map – Appenzel (Johannesberg)

Owner: Jackpot Farm

Trainer: Steve Asmussen 

Last Race: 2nd, Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Jon White and Ryan Stillman 

Analysis: His Arkansas Derby (G1) runner up effort to Charlatan was exactly what he needed after a lackluster effort in the Oaklawn Stakes. We always thought this horse would be good enough to jump back into contention, so it’s nice to see him back on the list. He may end up proving to be Asmussen’s best 3-year-old.

9. Modernist 

Derby Points/Rank: 70 – 6th 

Race Record: (5) 2-0-2

Earnings: $388,800

Breeding: Uncle Mo – Symbolic Gesture (Bernardini) 

Owner: Pam and Martin Wygood 

Trainer: Bill Mott

Last Race: 3rd, Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Magic Mike

Analysis: This horse ran pretty well to finish 3rd in the Louisiana Derby (G2), especially since he broke from the far outside 14-post. He may benefit from the extra time for the Kentucky Derby, considering he still seems to be developing. 

10. Uncle Chuck 

Derby Points/Rank: 0 – NR

Race Record: (1) 1-0-0

Earnings: $30,000

Breeding: Uncle Mo – Forest Music (Unbridled’s Song)

Owner: Karl Watson, Michael Pegram, and Paul Weitman 

Trainer: Bob Baffert 

Last Race: 1st, Maiden Special Weight at Santa Anita Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Jon White/Ryan Stillman  

Analysis: It’s really amazing how loaded Bob Baffert is after losing two top 3-year-old’s and then seemingly replacing them with two different ones. Uncle Chuck is his latest contender after an impressive debut win at Santa Anita, winning in wire to wire fashion. We’ll see if he can progress fast enough to make an impact alone this prolonged Kentucky Derby Trail. 

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11. Ny Traffic 

Derby Points/Rank: 70 – 7th 

Race Record: (8) 2-2-2

Earnings: $365,470

Breeding: Cross Traffic – Mamie Reilly (Graeme Hall)

Owner: John Fanelli, Cash is King LLC, LC Racing, and Paul Braverman

Trainer: Saffie Joseph Jr.

Last Race: 2nd, Matt Winn Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Mike “Saratoga Slim” Spector  

Analysis: Once again, this colt has proven to be a consistent performer. His runner-up effort in the Matt Winn Stakes (G3) was solid, which was similar to his efforts at Fair Grounds over the winer. He has earned his way into the Kentucky Derby starting gate. 

12. Enforceable 

Derby Points/Rank: 33 – 12th

Race Record: (9) 2-2-2

Earnings: $367,150

Breeding: Tapit – Justwhistledixie (Dixie Union)

Owner: John Oxley 

Trainer: Mark Casse 

Last Race: 5th, Louisiana Derby (G2) at Fair Grounds 

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Magic Mike

Analysis: His off the board finish in the Louisiana Derby (G2) isn’t to concerning considering his rough trip. However, with his running style, he is always going to have a big chance for those problems. The Kentucky Derby will only maximize those issues. We’ll see him next in the Blue Grass Stakes (G2) at Keeneland on July 11. 

13. Gouverneur Morris

Derby Points/Rank: 34 – 11th 

Race Record: (5) 2-1-1

Earnings: $247,500

Breeding: Constitution – Addison Run (Unbridled’s Song)

Owner: Team Valor International and WinStar Farm LLC

Trainer: Todd Pletcher 

Last Race: 3rd, Arkansas Derby (G1) at Oaklawn Park  

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Dan “Wise Dan” Waite

Analysis: This horse continues to show his class in big races. He ran decent once again in the division 1 of the Arkansas Derby (G1), finishing third to Charlatan. However, it seems like he could have some distance issues, after making big moves on the turn twice only to flatten out in the stretch. He is still one that can make some noise as we head into the summer. We will see him next in the Blue Grass Stakes (G2).

14. Art Collector   

Derby Points/Rank: 0 – NR

Race Record: (7) 3-1-0

Earnings: $188,475

Breeding: Bernardini – Distorted Legacy (Distorted Humor)

Owner: Bruce Lunsford

Trainer: Tom Drury, Jr.

Last Race: 1st, Allowance at Churchill Downs

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Aaron Halterman    

Analysis: An allowance victory at Churchill Downs has him pointing towards the Blue Grass Stakes (G2) for his next start. He earned a 100 beyer speed figure for the victory, which turned a lot of heads. We’ll see if he can repeat that sort of effort against tougher company. 

15. Mischevious Alex 

Derby Points/Rank: 50 – 9th

Race Record: (7) 4-1-1

Earnings: $344.230

Breeding: Into Mischief – White Pants Night (Speightstown)

Owner: Cash is King LLC and LC Racing   

Trainer: John C. Servis 

Last Race: 1st, Gotham Stakes (G3) at Aqueduct

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Austin/Evil Steveil 

Analysis: At one turn, this horse is pretty impressive, but his two-turn form is yet to be seen. It’s highly questionable if he can get the Kentucky Derby distance, which is why we have him ranked this low. The Woody Stephens Stakes (G1) looks like his next start this weekend. 

16. Max Player 

Derby Points/Rank: 10 – 31st

Race Record: (3) 2-1-0

Earnings: $173,500

Breeding: Honor Code – Fools in Love (Not For Love)

Owner: George Hall 

Trainer: Linda Rice

Last Race: 1st, Withers Stakes (G3) at Aqueduct 

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Dan “Wise Dan” Waite 

Analysis: The Withers Stakes (G3) winner is now on the Kentucky Derby scene, even though the race wasn’t all that fast. Still, his pedigree is solid, and he did show a nice closing kick. He’s runs this weekend in the Belmont Stakes (G1).

17. Pneumatic 

Derby Points/Rank: 10 – 34th

Race Record: (3) 2-0-1

Earnings: $101,850

Breeding: Uncle Mo – Teardrop (Tapit)

Owner: Winchell Thoroughbreds LLC

Trainer: Steve Asmussen 

Last Race: 3rd, Matt Winn Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Aaron Halterman 

Analysis: His Matt Winn Stakes (G3) effort was pretty solid considering it was his first start against stakes company. He still has a little ways to go before he can compete against the top group in the class; however, he has a shot to improve with more racing. 

18. Dr Post 

Derby Points/Rank: 0 – NR 

Race Record: (3) 2-0-0

Earnings: $76,635

Breeding: Quality Road – Mary Delaney (Hennessy)

Owner: St. Elias Stable 

Trainer: Todd Pletcher 

Last Race: 1st, Unbridled Stakes at Gulfstream Park 

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Magic Mike

Analysis: He makes his rankings debut this week after two solid victories in a row. The Unbridled Stakes was impressive considering his trip was less than ideal. He has a shot to develop into a nice horse as we progress towards the summer.  

19. Shivaree  

Derby Points/Rank: 40 – 10th

Race Record: (11) 3-3-2

Earnings: $344,005

Breeding: Awesome of Course – Garter Belt (Anasheed)

Owner: Jacks or Better Farm, Inc.

Trainer: Ralph Nicks  

Last Race: 3rd, Allowance Race at Gulfstream Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: NONE

Analysis: Three straight runner-up efforts against stakes company, including the Florida Derby (G1), earned this horse a spot in the rankings. The chances of him making a solid impact in the Kentucky Derby are slim, especially after his recent third-place allowance effort, but he has enough points to make the field. 

20. Ete Indien 

Derby Points/Rank: 74 – 5th 

Race Record: (7) 3-1-1

Earnings: $407,406

Breeding: Summer Front – East India (Mizzen Mast)

Owner: Linda Shanahan, Sanford Bacon, Dream With Me Stable Inc., Horse France America, D P Racing LLC (Deron Pearson) & Patrick L. Biancone Racing LLC

Trainer: Patrick Biancone 

Last Race: 4th, Allowance Race at Gulfstream Park

Racing Dudes Fantasy League Owner: Jared Welch  

Analysis: Nothing went his way in the Florida Derby (G1); however, he still showed a lot of heart to finish third. Unfortunately, he was a no-show in a recent allowance race at Gulfstream Park, which is troubling. He’ll need to show a big turnaround next time out to prove he is not tailing off. 

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