Churchill Downs trip notes and horses to watch (Sept. 26-29)
The following are trip notes for horses who had sharp efforts or tough trips at Churchill Downs during the week of Sept. 26-29, and who figure to improve or run big in their next starts. Add these runners to your horses to watch list, and bet them back next time out if they land in a reasonable spot.
Racing for the week was run under good weather conditions, on a fast main track and firm turf.
AMAZIMA: Winner from Ellis fended off early-race and mid-race challengers to get the lead in the stretch, but was used hard in order to do so and got nailed late by the deep closing favorite. Worth another shot.
BANKS ISLAND: Settled for second again, this time behind the even-money favorite after getting stuck down inside when trying to get through up the rail.
CAJUN FIRECRACKER: Winner from Prairie Meadows took the summer off and returned to run second off a 3 1/2-month layoff and got claimed. Ready to win for new barn in second off the layoff.
CHIEF EXECUTIVE: Lost the lead in the stretch and settled for second in what was nevertheless a big effort after rushing up to battle for the lead after a tardy beginning from out in the parking lot in post 12 in a turf route. Try again.
CONTROL STAKE: Chased a wire-to-wire winner and passed a few horses to close from last to second in solid outing off a three-month layoff. Stick with him.
DAVIDIC LINE: Unlucky to still be a maiden when second in a game effort, beaten less than a length while eight lengths clear of the rest of the field. Ready to graduate.
DYNAMITE GIFT: Longshot first starter broke slow near the back of a 12-horse field but then finished fast for second in six-furlong career debut. Won’t be a maiden for long.
INTO TROUBLE: Pressed and then dueled on a blazing fast six-furlong pace and beat the challengers only to get nipped late by the lone closer in the field who happened to be the even-money favorite. Can cure case of seconditis.
IRREPRESSIBLE: Asmussen first starter was the only late-runner in the race to make a dent, closing from eighth to third in 6 1/2-furlong career debut. Prepped and ready now.
KATIE THE CUTIE: Lunged out of the gate last when missing the break, then tried to rush up to a fast pace and emptied out due to those early efforts. Totally toss out the last-place finish.
SHARP ART: Got pinched back at the start when wanting to show early speed, then had to rush up but couldn’t make the lead at that point and finished off the board. Can rebound with a better break.
WELLINGTON WONDER: Totally overlooked first starter started behind in a 10-horse field but then passed all except the 3-2 favorite coming from Saratoga. Just needs a better start and won’t be a maiden for long.