Month: May 2012

Team Bodemeister is Back for More

Paynter Has A Score To Settle

Paynter – Zayat Racing Stables

Just because the connections for Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes Runner-up Bodemeister opted to pass on the Belmont Stakes doesn’t mean that the entire team has elected to do the same. While Bodemeister returned to his barn in California in preparation for races this summer, the remaining team members are headed to Belmont Park in attempt to settle the score.

Of course if we were in store for a final showdown between I’ll Have Another and Bodemeister it would be the biggest Triple Crown bout since Victory Gallop vs. Real Quiet in 1998 or Easy Goer vs. Sunday Silence in 1989. But because they are not going to meet for the final jewel the story line of revenge has an alternate angle in 2012. Because horse racing allows competition to go well beyond just the horses it means that on behalf of Bode, his owner and trainer are out to avenge his losses.  (more…)


Spoiler Alert: Triple Crown Debut at the Belmont Stakes

Waiting Until the Belmont Poses a Threat 

In the history of the Triple Crown there have been 19 bids for immortality that unraveled at the Belmont Stakes. The majority of these endeavors were negated by a horse that had already appeared in either of the first two legs. However, there is still a substantial amount of spoilers that made their Triple Crown debut in the Belmont Stakes. This is just another element that makes winning the Triple Crown such a daunting challenge because to win all three jewels a horse has to conquer a field of nominated contenders that can enter at anytime. On 8 different occasions the spoiler was played by a horse that waited until the Belmont before making their Triple Crown debut.

And they are:  (more…)

Belmont Stakes: Field Includes Triple Crown Tested Contenders

Early Probables Include Four Kentucky Derby Entries

Dullahan Headlines The Potential Spoilers

When a Triple Crown bid survives the first two legs is when the excitement really kicks into high gear. Because the drought has carried on for 34 years the horse that is in line to make it rain deserves all the attention and coverage that he is going to receive. What this doesn’t eliminate though is a look at the field that will be racing to win and prevent the Triple Crown gods from anointing another champion. Even though we’re still two weeks out, it’s never too early to get a look at the probable’s that will be lining up against our Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes winner.  (more…)

Hello New York

I’ll Have Another Arrives at Belmont

Following a pattern that has become a winning formula, Trainer Doug O’Neill waisted little time moving his Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes champion on to Belmont Park. Once the decision of shipping I’ll Have Another to Pimlico earlier than any recent Kentucky Derby winner proved to be rewarding, it was an easy choice for Doug O’Neill and owner Paul Reddam to put thier champion colt on the road the day after his Preakness Stakes victory.

Doug O’Neill was pretty confident that he would trust his instincts and ship I’ll Have Another swiftly after his Kentucky Derby victory. He felt it would be best for his colt to get settled in, acclimated to his new surroundings and most importantly comfortable with the new racing surface. The move got him into Pimlico almost two weeks before the Preakness after he arrived a week ahead of time at Churchill Downs. So now our potential Triple Crown winner has arrived at Belmont 3 weeks before the final jewel.  (more…)

I’ll Have Another Does It Again

I’ll Have Another Wins the Preakness Stakes

Going in to the Preakness Stakes it was common to analyze this race as a battle between two elite contenders. Those predictions were nothing less than spot-on as the battle went all the way down to the wire. As for the forecast that Bodemeister’s speed would be too tough catch, we now know that I’ll Have Another would not allow it. For the 3rd consecutive time, the colt that refuses quit in the stretch has won again so now the question is how far can he go?

Waiting to receive him is one of the grandest stages of them all, New York City and the final leg of the Triple Crown. The good thing is that there will be plenty of time to dissect his chances of becoming the first elite member of the Triple Crown club since Affirmed in 1978. So for now let’s look at how we managed to get by Bodemeister once again en route to a win in the Preakness Stakes.  (more…)

The Morning Line: Preakness Stakes

Odds Favor Bode Over I’ll Have Another

The majority of racing fans are pulling for a Triple Crown. The City of Baltimore seems to be locked in with the Kentucky Derby winner. The general public would love to see a name like this carry its legacy on to the final leg where New York City will be waiting with open arms. But the odds maker has spoken and Bodemeister is your Morning Line Favorite once again. Meanwhile, the Kentucky Derby winner I’ll Have Another is stalking close behind. Oddly enough this story is setting up to be a precursor to the race itself, round two between the front vs. the stalker. Buckle up race fans, this one could get interesting.

Click Here for the 2012 Preakness Stakes ML Odds and Post Positions    (more…)

Non-Derby Starters Face A Sizeable Test

As the countdown to the Kentucky Derby closes in every year the more talk there is about the so-called Derby Trends that a select few entries will be facing. The Preakness Stakes on the other hand doesn’t hold nearly as many. But since handicapping trends can be an intriguing element to consider, lets dig in. Now that the field is set, the post positions drawn and the Morning Line Odds deposited, let’s analyze a Preakness Trend that has had a very tough run as of late.

Non-Derby Entries

Only 3 of the last 28 winners skipped the Kentucky Derby. Although two of them have come in the last eight years, it’s recommended to first consider exactly who these two are – Rachel Alexandra in ’09 and Bernadini in ’05. What’s fascinating about these two Preakness Champions is that you might as well throw them out because of how great they went on to be. In fact, both horses ended thier Preakness victory year by winning an Eclipse Award.    (more…)

The Showdown Is On

Bodemeister Is Headed to the Preakness Stakes

The decision has been made; our Kentucky Derby runner-up is headed to Baltimore on Wednesday for a date with the horse that denied him the roses. In the opinion of Trainer Bob Baffert and Owner Ahmed Zayat Bodemeister has returned from the Kentucky Derby better than expected and looks fantastic. Following his gallop at Churchill Downs this morning is when Baffert made it official so it’s time to get ready for Bodemeister to make a 2nd run at getting the best of the Kentucky Derby winner.

The assumption has been that Bodemeister would be back for the Preakness Stakes but nothing is ever certain until the green light is given. This is especially true when a horse is coming off of back to back races where speed was the name of his game. In attempt to steal the race from the front of the pack, Bodemeister proceeded to torch the track at Churchill Downs behind a sweltering pace. Although it was a magnificent effort he wasn’t able to bring it home without behind gobbled up in the final 100 yards.  (more…)

Second Jewel for I’ll Have Another?

Yes vs. No in the Preakness Stakes

So here we are just one week away from the second leg of the Triple Crown. As the Preakness Stakes draws near and more contenders confirm their entry, the big lingering question continues to surface. Will the Kentucky Derby winner head to Belmont with a chance at immortality? It’s a question that is asked every year but the more that pass without a Triple Crown winner, the easier it has become to analyze why the Kentucky Derby winner will not be the next. That’s a good point but there are always counters to that arguement.           (more…)

Hello Baltimore

I’ll Have Another Settles In

The journey from Kentucky to Maryland is complete and I’ll Have Another is already getting comfortable at Pimlico Race Course. Arriving on Monday, 12 Days before the Preakness, makes I’ll Have Another the earliest Kentucky Derby winner to arrive since Monarchos left Louisville four days after the race in 2001. Trainer Doug O’Neil opted not to waste anytime because he thinks his colt will benefit by warming up to the surface and getting used to his new surroundings. You can’t blame a first time Kentucky Derby winning team for being a little anxious, plus who’s to say that the extra days in Baltimore will work against his chances of winning the second leg.     (more…)