Archive for February 2017

Life, Death, and Words

In the summer of 1949, W. C. Heinz had an hour to sit at his typewriter and describe a harrowing race and its aftermath.  What he wrote in that hour, on that rainy day, bubbles to the front of my mind whenever I open up my laptop and start writing words about horses.  The dialogue, the images…what... Read more »

2017 Risen Star Stakes and Rachel Alexandra Stakes Preview

This weekend, stakes get higher on the three-year-old trails.  The first 50-point preps show up on the calendar this week, and Picks and Ponderings dives into a pair of hotly contested preps in the Big Easy. Fourteen runners with Kentucky Derby dreams line up for the Risen Star (G2), led by Lecomte Stakes (G3) winner GUEST SUITE and Remsen Stakes... Read more »

2017 Southwest Stakes and Razorback Handicap Preview

Saturday the Derby trail makes its one-off visit to Golden Gate Fields for the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby.  Monday, however, the road to the first Saturday in May returns to conventional dirt for Oaklawn Park’s second of four points races: the Southwest Stakes (G3).  The Presidents’ Day card in Hot Springs also features... Read more »

2017 El Camino Real Derby Preview

With the demise of synthetic tracks over the last few years, options for amassing Kentucky Derby points over anything but dirt have become few and far between.  One of those rare remaining opportunities comes this Saturday over the Tapeta at Golden Gate fields, in the Grade 3 El Camino Real Derby. The Derby trail does return... Read more »

2017 Sam F. Davis Stakes Day Preview

This weekend, the Derby trail visits Tampa Bay Downs — and so does Picks and Ponderings.  We visit in a sense of writing this preview of all four stakes races on Saturday’s card.  But, we also visit in a literal sense.  This half of P&P will be on the ground at Tampa Bay Downs, so make sure... Read more »

2017 Holy Bull Stakes and Forward Gal Stakes Preview

After last week’s Pegasus card, when older horses took the spotlight, attention focuses back on the three-year-olds this week.  Here at Picks and Ponderings, we turn our attention to sunny Florida again, as Gulfstream Park hosts a pair of well-subscribed three-year-old races. Along the Derby trail, the Holy Bull Stakes (GI2) features the eagerly awaited return... Read more »