Get informed before you make your picks at the betting window on Derby day!
Danielle Lerner/Courier Journal/Wochit
Morning-line oddsmaker Mike Battaglia offers free expert picks and tips for Thursday’s horse races at Keeneland. First post is at 1:05 p.m.
CHELSEA CLOISTERS debuts for Wes Ward off of a series of solid works and gets the nod with Albin Jimenez aboard. SEEKING A STAR is a high-priced Keeneland sales grad in the capable hands of Mark Casse. She figures to be tough to beat. WOSIE had a nice gate work last out for Joe Sharp and is a solid threat.
BEAUTIFUL GAME was no match for stablemate Mitole last out but that one came back to win impressively again next out. He drops in class for this one and rates the slight edge for Steve Asmussen and Ricardo Santana, who dominated the standings at the recently concluded Oaklawn meet. KATE’S GOLDEN DUDE finished a length behind the top pick last out but has the speed to be in contention throughout and Corey Lanerie picks up the mount. UNITED PATRIOT comes off of a nice win and is a definite contender for Brad Cox.
PORTFOLIO MANAGER came off of a layoff to run a decent race on the grass last out. He moves back to his preferred dirt surface today and appears to be in a good spot to pick up the win. MANIACAL has been a consistent runner finishing in the money in 8 of his 10 races and looks like the one to beat. VALYRIAN has the speed to be in contention throughout.
ABYSSINIAN is another runner from Ward’s fleet of 2-year-olds. This one trained sharply at Turfway and had a solid gate work here last week. Give her the edge with Joel Rosario aboard. POWER GAL is a well bred son of Empire Maker, who is training well for Casse and has to be respected. ANALYZE THIS CAT posted a bullet work for John Hancock, who is always dangerous with his babies.
HOLLOW POINT will be running at the end in a race that figures to have a fast pace. He rates the slight edge in what appears to be a well-matched turf sprint. VENTRY BAY should be in contention throughout and figures to gets a good trip from his outside post. He will be tough to beat. WHAT’SONTHEAGENDA may be the fastest from the gate and is a solid threat.
PURE SUGAR didn’t show much in California but impressed clockers with her work here last week. Give her the edge in a fairly weak maiden claimer. GO STELLAIRE is winless in 13 tries but drop in for a tag for the first time and is the one to beat. SHE’S DA NUTS fits with these.
RAGING BULL debuts for Chad Brown, who has been on fire this meet. This one hasn’t missed a beat in his training and figures to be ready to go at first asking. Give him the edge against what looks like a very good field of 3-year-old maidens. IRISH TERRITORY has been off since August but is in the capable hands of Bill Mott. He was second in the Grade 2 With Anticipation last out and anything close to that performance makes him the one to beat. DIVIDE just missed in his last race for Todd Pletcher and has had two bullet works since that start.
SILVER DUST was disqualified from a game maiden win at Fair Grounds and the third-place finisher in that one was just nosed out in the Lexington last Saturday. He had a bullet work over this track and rates the edge for Bret Calhoun with Lanerie back aboard. BIG DOLLAR BILL has been running against some tough company in Florida and broke his maiden over this track back in October. UNCLE MOJO has the speed to be dangerous.
SPECIAL FORCES closed ground in his two races in New Orleans and gets blinkers for the first time Thursday. His last two works have been sharper and he can be expected to run much better in here. BLACKSBURG hooked a tough field in his debut and also gets blinkers for his return. WITCH DOCTOR fits in here.