Category: horse racing

2019 Lexington Stakes Preview

Keeneland, who already hosted the 100-point Blue Grass Stakes last week, gets back in the Derby prep picture this weekend with the last chance saloon: the Lexington Stakes (G3).  The race offers a $200,000 purse as well as 20-8-4-3 points to the top four finishers.  It’s not enough to get a horse with no points into... Read more »

2019 Arkansas Derby Preview

This weekend, Picks and Ponderings take s a look at the final pair of Kentucky Derby prep races.  This piece focuses on the Arkansas Derby, Oaklawn’s final station on its spur of the Derby trail, is as big a Derby prep as can be: $1,000,000 purse, Grade 1 status, and 100-40-20-10 points to the top four finishers. ... Read more »

A Quick Look at the Wood, Blue Grass, and Santa Anita Derby

We’re a month out from the Kentucky Derby, and three tracks are having their final prep races on Saturday.  Aqueduct hosts the Wood Memorial (G2), Keeneland hosts the Blue Grass Stakes (G2), and Santa Anita hosts the Santa Anita Derby (G1).  All three races offer 100-40-20-10 Road to the Kentucky Derby points to their top... Read more »

2019 Florida Derby and Gulfstream Park Oaks Preview

The Florida Derby, particularly, has long been a top-flight Kentucky Derby prep.  Its importance has been as strong as ever in recent years.  In the six editions of the Kentucky Derby since the points system started, three Florida Derby winners have earned the roses a month later, and as usual several of this year’s top contenders... Read more »

2019 Louisiana Derby and Fair Grounds Oaks Preview

Saturday at Fair Grounds, the highest-stakes round of Kentucky Derby and Kentucky Oaks preps begin.  The Louisiana spurs of the three-year-old trails draw to a close with the Fair Grounds Oaks and the Louisiana Derby: 100-point races for the Kentucky Oaks and the Kentucky Derby, respectively.  Even the 40 points afforded the second-place finishers have... Read more »

2019 Rebel Stakes Preview

Oaklawn’s spur of the Derby trail continues this Saturday with the Rebel Stakes. Originally slated as a race with a $1,000,000 purse and Kentucky Derby points allotted 50-20-10-5 to its top four finishers, the number of horses pointed to the Rebel mushroomed after the San Felipe (G2) at Santa Anita was cancelled.  In response, Oaklawn... Read more »

2019 Jeff Ruby Steaks and Bourbonette Oaks Preview

This week, Picks and Ponderings turns its eyes toward Florence, y’all.  Turfway’s card on Saturday features a pair of three-year-old points races, the $200,000 Jeff Ruby Steaks (G3) (previously the Spiral Stakes) for open company and the $100,000 Bourbonette Oaks (G3) for fillies.  Both races offer 20-8-4-2 points to its top four finishers, good for the Kentucky Derby... Read more »

2019 Fountain of Youth Preview and Saturday Gulfstream Stakes Selections

Saturday’s card at Gulfstream Park is headlined by the Grade 2 Fountain of Youth Stakes. Here at Picks and Ponderings, we have a full preview of the Fountain of Youth, a race which offers a purse of $400,000 as well as Road to the Kentucky Derby points (50-20-10-5) to its top four finishers. We also... Read more »

2019 Hal's Hope Stakes Preview

Racing may still be on hiatus in Chicago for another three weeks, but that doesn’t mean we aren’t following locals in big races.  This Saturday’s card at Gulfstream is anchored by the Hal’s Hope Stakes (G3), a race that marks the four-year-old debut of Illinois-bred rising star Sir Anthony. The son of Mineshaft, owned by... Read more »

2019 Risen Star and Rachel Alexandra Stakes Preview

If you’re on the road to the Kentucky Derby or the Kentucky Oaks, the ante has gone up.  The next round of three-year-old preps begins on Saturday at Fair Grounds, with the Risen Star Stakes (G2) and the Rachel Alexandra Stakes (G2).  Both of those races offer 50-20-10-5 points, respectively, to their top four finishers... Read more »