Race Preview: American Turf - Churchill Downs - May 3, 2013
The third leg of the pick 4 ending with the Kentucky Oaks is the American Turf for three-year-olds and no time will be wasted, let's get right to the wide-open field.
Anyriderill Do is two-for-three in his brief career including a smashing win over the lawn at Fair Grounds. He got away with a slow pace that day and powered home to win going away. The class test comes on Friday with his stakes debut.
Noble Tune is three-for-four with a Grade 3 win and a second in the Grade 1 Breeders' Cup Juvenile Turf. Trainer Chad Brown skipped the Transylvania at Keeneland with his colt and while he is the favorite, the seven horses to come out of his last race at Tampa are winless.
War Dancer may have one of the best race replays in the field as he absolutely blew the break, but jockey Alan Garcia did not worry and had the War Front colt up in time to win by a half-length. Let's hope he doesn't break as bad this time, but don't expect the morning line of 6-1.
Also coming out of that War Dancer race are Positively and Tenforthemoney, the two-three finishers behind the winner. Tenforthemoney was third, but he may be the one to back on Friday. The horse is 30-1 morning line and had a troubled trip during the allowance race. Looking back at the replay, it was perhaps Tenforthemoney who had the best gallop out. Perhaps underneath at a huge number.
Admiral Kitten was second by a nose in another allowance race at Keeneland, which was a much better race than his last place finish in the Battaglia Memorial at Turfway Park. Admiral Kitten had to be ridden pretty good to keep going and was outbobbed at the end. Ken and Sarah Ramsey own both Admiral Kitten and Redwood Kitten, who should be helping with a fast pace for the Admiral.
Fire Guard may be overlooked in the wagering, but that would be a mistake. The son of First Defence really did not pick it up at any point in his last race, the Grade 3 Transylvania, but note that he won in a similar second-off-the-layoff earlier this year. Junior Alvarado can ride and picks up many live mounts for trainer Bill Mott. The one caveat is that he pulls early so Alvarado will need to get the Juddmonte Farms color bearer to relax down the backstretch.
Joelito was first-time-turf in his last and by Rock Hard Ten had every right to move up, which he did. The $115,000 yearling purchase gets hot riding Joel Rosario in the irons and with that alone should be a must include on every ticket.
This is one tough race and perhaps eight of the 12, I'll Call ran on Thursday and should scratch, are worth including on the ticket. If Bashaar transfers his form to turf, that number could be nine.
Post time for the Grade 2 American Turf is 4:44 pm ET. Tomorrow the Friday feature, the Kentucky Oaks, which drew one of the best fields of the weekend.