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A CLOSER LOOK at Keeneland races on 10/06
Debutant from the always dangerous McPeek barn is by a stallion known for his long-winded progeny; dam hasn't produced a winner to date, but is herself a winning half-sister to G-3 SW Oraibi ($383K); busy schedule of drills and Lasix right off th bat says beware, but expect 7f is a tad short for her; await two turns.
Made mild progress past tiring rivals in her coming out at Ellis Park and should move forward with that experience under her belt; near-bullet drill at Churchill recently should have her on her toes coming into this and perhaps she's depart more promptly from the gate; might share.
Didn't do a lot of damage to her field at Kentucky Downs as she got an education if no cash; sire's get are usually precocious, so perhaps she's taking after 'Six and will move forward on the main oval here; bullet from the gate at the Thoroughbred Center in mid-August suggests such; longshot worth a small play.
She's Got It
First timer from the Romans barn is by a stallion who gets a good number of his foals to the winner's circle first time out, but more often has seen them fare real well on grass; winning dam ($94K) has produced a dirt winner from two others foals and is herself a half to two stakes winners; like her sharp gate move at Churchill and her am tab implies talent; contender with a good trip.
Finds her way back to Keeneland after selling for $53K here last spring; sire was a hot commodity in NY with his first crop and found his way to Kentucky a couple years ago; the first foal of her dam, who had an abbreviated career but won as a juvenile, this filly has lit the morning tab twice at Keeneland and should not be taken lightly; expect Suarez has her on target for this; shot.
By a stallion known for his propensity with newbies, this filly is the second foal of her dam, whose first has found the winner's circle already; dam was stakes-placed ($102K) juvenile debut winner and a a half-sister to a SW and two stakes placed horses; Asmussen barn is always dangerous, especially with 2yos.
Sire gets a good average of debut winners and this filly's dam has produced three foals, with the first having won over $86K to date; dam was also stakes-placed and is a half to a G1 SW in England; kind of feel that two turns will suit her best, but she lists works back to mid-July at Monmouth and gets Lasix; watch mutuel windows and paddock for clues.
Ice Cream Lady
Has found just one other rival faster in each of her two starts to date; speedy filly has the edge on experience over this field and with the strong front-end rider Court as her pilot today, expect she'll be sitting just behind the leaders and prove the one to fear most when they turn for home.
Tried to steal her debut at Arlington but came up a tad empty late; with two works since that race and an outside post here that will allow Borel to gauge what is going on inside during the run down the backstretch, expect this gal to prove the bettor's choice and the one to key in the exotics; hard to beat with a repeat try.
Maria's Only One
Tired after breaking well from the inside post last time out at Saratoga between the lay-offs; chestnut filly is out of a stakes winning Miswaki mare, who has produced three minor winners from six foals to race; will have to hold on late after her early ground saving trip again today; pace factor; board finish.
Couldn't prevail as the stout chalk after her game early effort at Turfway Park; Southern Halo filly didn't break well from the outside in her debut at Ellis; dam has produced 6 winners from 8 foals to race, including stakes winner Katherine Of Ascot (7 wins-$301K); improving; money finish.
Unbridled filly is a half sister to multiple graded stakes winner Royal Haven (19 wins-$892K); posted some solid Churchill Downs published gate works leading up to her debut; Jon Court a plus; check post parade for more clues.
Held on for the place at odds over 52-1 two starts back before the lay-off at Ellis Park; couldn't move forward off of her even effort last time out behind Southern Dream; she's the first foal out of her dam who was 2 for 20 lifetime as a racehorse; mid-pack finish.
This filly made-up a whole lot of ground at stout odds in her debut at Arlington Park; ships-in to Keeneland off of her solid 6/8s gate work 10-days back at AP; half sister to graded stakes-placed Clever Actor ($153K), and her first dam is a multiple stakes winner (10 wins-$185K); check tote for value in the exotics.
Closed well to no avail in her Churchill Downs debut before the extended lay-off; dam couldn't find the winners circle in 16 lifetime starts, although she's a half to multiple graded stakes winner Caress (13 wins-$667K), and GI-placed Country Cat (9 wins-$564K); will have to surprise for the top prize today.
Didn't finish well behind Southern Dream and Early Primrose in her debut at Turfway Park; Glitterman filly is the first foal out of her dam, who was winless in two lifetime starts; worked an easy half over this main surface four days back; will need a better trip.
Moments From Glory
Pulpit filly is the first foal out of her G3-winning dam, who was 3 for 7 lifetime, and earned over $107K; she's been working steadily at Churchill Downs leading up to this one, but those works indicate that she'll probably need the race.
Beat three at double-digit odds in her debut at Churchill Downs before the three month lay-off; first foal out of her dam who is a half to multiple graded stakes-placed Minority Dater (5 wins-$212K); bay filly gets Calvin Borel aboard, but she draws a tough post for her Keeneland debut; best effort yields minor award.
Race is wide open and there is certainly no shortage of early speed in the mix; the quarter should be very quick and there could be several wilting from the pressure even if the surface is fair inside and out; he could not withstand the pressure in his race against winners at Ellis and this looks to be a much tougher spot; edge to others.
He will, at the very least, ensure that the pace is quick and what looked so easy when he was off by himself was a lot more difficult in the presence of others; he will be severely tested today; others looks a little more interesting.
Has some stakes experience at Arlington and has stayed in the hunt a long way though that it appears that he can only run up front; that may be the most crowded part of the race track; he is one of the quickest and has done so against better company than most; might be around a long way though it will not be an easy front-end trip and he will earn whatever he gets.
Has a style of running which could be perfect for this event though what he may confront is a much faster pace on a relative basis; he won off as much the best and while he has the speed to stay close based on his opener he will have to prove that his last is for real against other winners; contender, but he may not be quite as impressive as the last running line if the pace is under 45 seconds.
Has not run since the early summer and as such he could be a more developed runner by now; perhaps he is ready now but he will have to be a lot better as he takes on allowance company after going one for four with maiden claimers; iffy at best but he still catch a few late.
Won his race way back in May and after failing in a couple of dirt stakes seemed to find a home on the grass with a much improved effort at KD in stakes company; he is the "different" runner as he goes turf to dirt and but whether or not he can keep up to these on dirt in another story, though tracing back, he will pass others if they go too fast for him early; the higher the price the greater the interest.
Has run five times at four different race tracks and was a winner in his return to Ky last time; he too appears to need the lead to run his race and will be disadvantaged by the fast pace if the past is prologue; not sure that he will measure up to his name today in this pace match up.
Ride With The Wind
Thinking that, without any idea of how the track will play, he will probably be sitting a great stalking trip on the outside and that he might be running strongly in the stretch; he has been working regularly since winning his second start and he might be very tough to beat; a prime win contender.
Only ten starts as a 5-year-old and she is well-traveled to say the least; first stakes try in this country unspectacular but excusable since it came on the dirt; more than enough pace to set the table and the patient Albarado has ridden a few winners on the Lexington lawn; player at a price.
Four Plus Four
Former stakes regular as gotten a couple of confidence boosters and is now ready to go after some more black type; most of her success has come on the front end going two turns but showed excellent versatility two back when she mowed the speed down with Greta up; reunited with that pilot today and is another who could pick up the pieces.
Promising sophomore campaign ended last October and she was unable to pick up where she left off this year back in the Spring; finally got her first win of the year in Ellis dash but was life and death to do so while odds on; lacked a late kick in most recent and think she will be lacking in the final stages today as well.
Spotting her rivals some poundage today off a gaudy string of successes that date back over two years; an absolute winning machine including one of these turf dashes locally back in the Spring; equally effective from on or slightly off the pace; not real flashy but she does what it takes to win.
Pace player certainly but she does not appear to be at the top of her game right now; turf form sketchy with only three career outs on the surface although she did hang on for a share at Monmouth while sprinting; gets big-hearted when able to clear early but enough other speed present here that doubt she garners daylight.
A little short on experience against these kind as she has only a handful of first and second tier allowance efforts following that elusive maiden score; has won around one turn on the infield but this field is an entirely different story.
Still looking for that first win in this country while failing to draw much attention on tote; evenly paced running style regardless of distance or surface; troubled start may have cost her a little in most recent but she will have to take a major step forward to contend against the likes of these.
Recent graduate will have to had everything go her way today to threaten including an inside post to utilize her speed; flattered Thunder Sands by winning her next start after that allowance try but this is an awfully lot to ask of either of them.
Fresh speed from the rail could be the wild card; Barnett nearly got Franks-bred to Calder diploma last Nov.; that's the right kind of 2yo action to prompt thoughts of maturity at 3; but you're relying on the strength of Tues.'s 6f blowout to allow Flores to command the fence and repel Western Power; if the rail is hot, maybe; otherwise, a bit dicey.
May have thrown a big hint at 2 in Louisville; Streak for Gold took slightly shorter layoff after, popped for TP N1x in just two starts on 9/5; yet prefer Nafzger's charges once-prepped after such a long break; and wouldn't you rather wait and watch Blue Jay fly on the eventual turf stretchout?; Borel fans get odds.
Quick one-two punch attempt late at Churchill to get him to presumably his preferred turf surface produced deep-pack clunkers; this 6f has the hallmark of tune-up for attempt to ignite better try along the same pattern in Louisville; later.
13 lengths to make up on Western Power; that's a stretch, even for well-bred Claiborne boy; but did hustle hard to preserve the show; Brothers goes to the well with three more serious breezes; full-brother Barrier won his debut here at 2; chance to close some ground on 'Power but would be mild surprise for all.
You'd like to give precociously-bred firster a chance, but this photograph is too crowded already; bit surprised Kutz didn't stick with Ball; by the same token, one start may be all this colt needs for best in Louisville; no flaws in work tab there; tote has final answer.
Field strung out wide and far behind 5-2 Cherry Lake; Keeneland newcomer Mojica 202-32-29-32 for 476k at Ellis; gelding hails from Locust Grove winner Glorious View, with stakes-winning siblings, is back on his Lexington home court and could improve for exotics impact at a nice price; tab.
Sophomore comebacker here in Apr. wasn't all bad; the rest of that trifecta went on to summer diplomas; but disastrous break with first blinkers benched him for 23 weeks?; working towards redemption with sharp Churchill a.m. set; 3yo has some maturity potential, Robby A. a good fit; but prefer to see one first.
Holds interesting four-of-a-kind hand here; has realistic chance to keep that string of tri kickers intact; but anything more for show parlay dreamboat play will depend on a misfire from Western Power - unlikely; 100-day break punctuated by competent work tab locally - a plus; Mig will work the pace, scrub on for a slice; you know where 4yo fits.
Our Lil Affair
Backed off readily late behind A's an B's at KyDowns, even though the pace had been moderate and measured; was behind that foe by a similar margin in dud debut at the Mountain; and if A's an B's is looking at another C- here, there's no passing grade for this colt; wait a few more.
From sire's first crop; Flying Chevron didn't win his debut, but won the NYRA mile at 3 and proved himself up to 9f (Pegasus H.); Amoss has put him through steady paces at Churchill's training track, but has picked no easy spot; would need bold bid out of the box to knock down the speed; doubt.
If there was ever a key maiden race in the making, it was his; you can watch the repeat and still not believe Table Talk got to him; those two cut that field down; has recency on the other speed of Daring Dehere & Maestro's Debut, could be significant edge; Mott loaded for bear again this meet; turns the screws on 3yo with pair of hustling works; colt may simply over Power this crew.
A's an B's
Maybe gets a C- for KyDowns effort; was assured of a board hit until Deputariat came out of nowhere on the uphill in the last sixteenth to light the board; while 3yo's pace speed has developed, he still lacks enough finish to surprise special weights; Tues. gate blast noted, but can't support.
Won only one of nine starts this year and was winless in eight races last year; was beaten a neck by alw foes at WO in his last start and will probably find this competition tougher than what he faced in Canada; finished 4th or better in eight of his last nine races and was in the money in all four races at Kee; best effort might hit the board in this short field, but he didn't fare well the last three times he raced in graded stakes.
Robin de Nest
Finished a close 3rd in the Arlington Sprint Handicap in his last start and won an overnight handicap in his previous outing at AP; won six of his last 10 races, and his best speed figures are good enough to put him right there at the finish of this race; however, he is another that hasn't fared well in recent graded stakes, and he has just one 3rd in two outings at Kee; will probably get part, but others look better for the win.
Bet On Sunshine
Nine-year-old has been one of the better sprinters in the country for several years and finished a game 3rd in last year's Breeder's Cup Sprint; is still near the top of his form, as shown with two wins and a 2nd in three starts this year; won the Arlington Sprint Handicap on a sloppy track in his last outing; won 20 of 40 starts lifetime and amassed a bankroll of over $1.2 million; is facing some quick young horses here, but he has the class edge and looks like strictly the one to beat.
Three-year-old appears to be turning into a top sprinter; he won the Grade II Kentucky Cup Sprint at Turfway Park in his last out and beat a good allowance field at Sar in his previous outing; he has the best last-race speed figure in this field and may have his best races in his future; he led throughout and won going away the last time Albarado rode him and will probably try the same tactics today; could pose an elusive target in the stretch if they don't go after him early.
Beat a nice alw field at Mon in his last start but will find this field much tougher; that was his first win in 10 starts over the last two years, and it doesn't appear likely that he will make it two in a row; won seven of his first 12 starts, earning almost $300K, but his recent form hasn't been nearly as good; seems unlikely to keep up with Snow Ridge early or stall the closers in the stretch; would need his very best to finish in the money.
Tries the new and testing distance and is off form or not good enough based on her latest, even if she had an excuse or two; don't know that she is fast enough either; looking to others.
Has never run a bad race but did take a while to figure it all out; her positional speed should lead to a decent trip and she has been working well since that win; would not be surprised if she comes up with an improved race; pace match up should suit; contender.
Has had more than her fair share of opportunities several with easier and it is likely that she will have her hands full with several in here; will have to give the edge to others based on her history.
Ide A Quest
Was it the mud or the pace or the company? her win came at a longer distance she has had less success at shorter distances when the pace is faster; see her as needing to improve and as doubtful on the pace issue.
Has been winless this year though she has run some races that look to make her relevant if she continues to perform near her best; she has been running longer since her sprint win and perhaps the intermediate distance might suit her well; a possibility as she looks to be working well of late readying for her return.
Has a trio of money finishes in her recent races and after the sprint in her latest this 7F distance could suit her well; she has had a lot of chances and has not matched her best this year; if playing to win would give the edge to others but can see her rallying for another share.
Has the best history at the distance and that is often significant at 7F; been prepping quite regularly and has a second here -albeit a remote one- off a layoff in the spring; if she can work out the right trip near the front she is one with a good chance with one of her better efforts; interesting at 5-1 or higher.
Came from the clouds to win her first race in her seventh career start sporting blinkers again last time; she has a bad habit of giving the opposition a head start lately and that will be costly if she does it again here; would suspect that she will passing several late -even if she starts better- and could get a good piece of it with a better start and a good trip.
Has run gamely in her races with winners which have come far apart and she now gets to run two together for the first time in a while; her maiden victory was an honest race and if her recent sets her up for a better race she should be a presence throughout the running though she must negotiate an additional furlong; these will be tougher than they were at Louisiana Downs!
Last couple of races before and after the layoff have been poor and while she has experience at the distance and is probably as fast as any it might be best to await a return to better form than she has been showing.
A talented colt, as evidenced by that 6.5f win in 1:16.56; like the move to come here; some of the best 2YOs in the country are out West - so it makes sense to duck the competition a bit; in great hands with Hofmans, who won the Lexington Stakes here with Touch Gold; contender.
One thing he isn't lacking is experience around turns - he was running at Fpx, a bullring; discouraged that he lost as the favorite in a stakes there...that doesn't bode well for his chances of beating this classy group; hard to picture him rallying for more than a piece.
A good horse; just imagine what his PPs would look like if he hadn't raced against Came Home and Officer, the leaders of the 2YO division; the NoCal-based Hollendorfer won races in bunches at AP this summer, and knows how to campaign a top stakes horse; speedy threat.
Forget that he's an Ohio-bred; he won the Cradle gamely, turning back a nice group of babies; like that he sat out the Ky Cup Juvenile (which stablemate Repent won); that should leave him fresh; has the benefit of experience, having already been around two turns; do not underestimate.
Fine And Dandy
Why not take a shot on dirt? that's what his connections are thinking; there aren't many prestigious turf races for 2YOs until later this fall - so the timing is right to try the main track again; lone start on dirt wasn't awe inspiring, but that was his first start; inexperience, not the surface, may have been more responsible for the defeat.
Trainer Paasch was one of the few trainers not scared of Officer; he bravely took him on with this colt, and although he lost, the colt at least remained competitive; horses who have lost to Officer have subsequently done quite well; Essence Of Dubai, beaten 10 lengths by him in the Best Pal, whistled last weekend in the Norfolk; believe he has the most raw talent...stamina is the question; edge.
Request For Parole
1st-year trainer Margolis, formerly an assistant for Stan Hough, has been around good horses and he's making the right moves with this colt; like that Margolis got him acquainted with the Kee surface 9/27 when shipped over from his CD<\p>base; stakes winner has a versatile style and should offer value.
One thing about Zito...his 2YOs typically need a couple starts to get going; so that tells you the kind of potential this horse has; already he has broken his maiden and now he's shipped from NY to Lexington, where owner Tracy Farmer resides; won't have any difficult getting the distance; a couple positives.
Some bettors make the mistake of dismissing Calder 2YOs; take note - they generate some fast horses; Outofthebox and Express Tour ran down there last year; although his last win came on the lead, he did come from well off the pace in a sprint; so he might be able to take back in a field inundated with pace; receives his acid test.
Lukas is being aggressive with this horse; he tried him in a graded stake after a narrow maiden win, and now is back with him on short rest to contest this G2; he may view him as being Breeders' Cup material; should move forward off the Ky Cup; he gained valuable experience in that 2-turn race.
Took a beating by Hamsack in his debut, then whipped a field of Sar runners; although sire Smoke Glacken was a champion sprinter, he ran decently around 2 turns; he won at 1m, was a close 3rd in the 1 1/16m La Derby, and was 2nd to Touch Gold in the Lexington here; so with stamina on the dam's side, this colt may stretch out; 11 post is an obstacle; Flores will have to work to avoid being wide on a track that tends to favor inside runners.
Hyde Park (CHI)
Has been freshened since mid-pack finish in Saratoga sprint on the dirt; returns to the turf where he faded badly at a mile and 3/16; Walden has two works into him since last race so he should be fit and ready but he'll need to run a lifetime best to get a piece.
Closed fast to get the nod in a photo at KD going a mile; has been consistent in last three efforts before finally graduating from the N1X level; in a race that doesn't appear to have alot of early speed to chase will probably have to stay up a little closer than last out.
Comes down from Canada with one turf race under his belt where he ran into trouble mid stretch; regally bred son of Seeking The Gold has had a very sporadic racing career having just seven career starts as five year old; clearly has some ability the question is what keeps ailing him and will it affect him now?;Shows a solid work at WO.
Has been facing a slightly weaker bunch; gets in light and may be one of the few willing to challenge Alpha strike for the lead in the early going; should he do so it is unlikely that he'll be able to hold up to the pressure.
Has had success here at Keeneland back in April when placing a head behind the winner; picks up McCarron for the ride and has been facing a tougher bunch in New York; if Seek Smartly is not at his best this is the one to beat.
Has not had a firm turf course to run on in his last three attempts at Arlington; if this was what was affecting him adversely then he just might return to the form that brought him back to back wins; has some good works under him and can run with these.
Had a terrible go of it last out in his return after a six month layoff which precedes a year and a half layoff; now he reappears after a brief 'freshening' in a very challenging spot where he'll need to return to his '99 form to have a chance.
Came through with some good performances despite having gone off at long odds; is in a little tougher this time, but would consider for the exotics and may just surprise.
Has been in the money five out of six times on the turf; has not raced since Saratoga where the addition of Lasix brought him to a new level; expect him to be close to the lead and should be in the heat of the battle coming home.
Gives the turf a try today; has not raced since February but shows some blistering works out at Churchill; likes to take the run up front and will have to overcome the outside post to do so; if he goes unchallenged anything can happen but if he will be up against it to go the distance.
Outrun in the claiming ranks he is yet another to to attempt a t returning to form of days long gone; should he get in it is unlikely that he will be able match strides with these for the distance even though he shows some solid works at Cdt.
Has finished mid-pack in last several tries with the exception of a third place finish in the mud vs. claimers; also eligible probably is hoping for the heavy rains to get him in on the main track.
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