Handicapping the 2020 Remington Springboard Mile

Profile Picture: James Scully

December 17th, 2020

Friday’s $200,000 Remington Springboard Mile S. will award points toward a Kentucky Derby berth, and an intriguing field of 11 is entered. Post time is scheduled for 11:28 p.m. (ET).

A lively pace appears possible in the mile test.

The probable front-runners include 3-1 morning line favorite #8 Outadore, who switches to dirt for Wesley Ward. The gray Outwork colt weakened to third after setting the pace most recently in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf (G1).

#7 Saffa’s Day posted a sharp wire-to-wire tally in his debut at Keeneland, winning by a widening 5 1/4-length margin, but the chestnut Carpe Diem colt wound up a disappointing sixth after failing to make the early lead in the Nov. 6 Nyquist S. He figures to send for Steve Asmussen, whose other runner, #8 Cowan, is eligible to benefit from hot fractions.

Other possible pace factors include #10 Joe Frazier, who exits a front-running effort at Churchill Downs for Brad Cox; and locally-based runners #2 Number One Dude and #5 Red N Wild.

#4 Gushing Oil is my top pick.

Listed at 15-1 on the morning line, Gushing Oil rallied to win his debut at 7-furlongs going away by two lengths at Remington Park in mid-October. Racing well of the rail the entire way, the gelding stalked a hot pace (:21 4/5 opening quarter-mile) and netted a respectable 84 Brisnet Speed rating.

The Kentucky-bred son of Dialed In was bet down to favoritism in the Oct. 30 Clever Trevor S. two weeks later, but Gushing Oil experienced a tough trip throughout, stuck down on the inside behind glacial opening fractions. He was forced to check on heels entering the far turn and caught in a pocket through the stretch.

Danny Pish has freshened his pupil seven weeks, and Lane Luzzi can negotiate a better trip. Gushing Oil should receive a favorable setup for his late kick.

Cowan, who has been pegged as the early 4-1 second choice, will look to make an impact in the final furlongs. A front-running maiden winner on the main track at Churchill Downs, the Kantharos colt changed tactics when switching to turf for his last three outings. He exits a fast-closing second in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf Sprint (G2), and Cowan looms as a major player if he handles the stretch out to two turns.

#1 Senor Buscador, who rallied boldly to win his debut in early November, also merits consideration for multi-race and vertical wagers.