Scully, Hanson dive into Pool 4 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager

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TwinSpires Staff

March 3rd, 2021

With Pool 4 of the 2021 Kentucky Derby Future Wager now open, editors James Scully and Vance Hanson have put their heads together and reached a consensus on an individual entry they both like.

They also scanned the remaining options and have each picked out others they’re excited to back in the pool this week.

Consensus Pick: Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 4

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Essential Quality winning the Southwest (G3) - Coady Photography

It’s a given the odds on undefeated champion #6 Essential Quality (7-2) will be significantly lower at the close of wagering Sunday than the 8-1 on offer in each of the first three pools of the KDFW. Keep in mind, though, we now have a better gauge on his progress following last weekend’s Southwest (G3) and that he promises to perform well in his final prep too. That will most likely occur after Pool 5 at the end of March, so continuing to lock in on him at a higher price than he’ll offer on May 1 isn’t a bad way to approach things as he’s clearly one of the ones in a Derby that’s looking top-heavy at the moment. And contrary to the morning line, the results of Saturday’s San Felipe (G2) might also influence the odds to where Essential Quality might not actually be favored in this pool.

James Scully’s bonus free pick

#18 Proxy (20-1) has never finished worse than second from five career starts, posting runner-up finishes in the Risen Star S. (G2) and Lecomte S. (G3). The Tapit colt is progressing nicely for trainer Michael Stidham, registering 77-82-82-94-98 Brisnet Speed ratings, and I expect for Proxy to add blinkers after losing focus while turning for home in the Risen Star. He’s eligible to be completely overlooked in Pool 4, and Proxy’s odds will be much shorter on Kentucky Derby Day after a good showing in the Louisiana Derby (G2).

 Vance Hanson’s bonus free pick

The addition of blinkers for last month’s Risen Star (G2) undoubtedly helped #14 Mandaloun (15-1) get back on track after a slightly flat performance in the Lecomte (G3) in January. Along with the aforementioned Essential Quality, Eclipse Award-winning trainer Brad Cox now has a very strong one-two punch for the year’s first classic. This Juddmonte homebred appears to have the physical attributes to withstand the rigors of the upcoming Louisiana Derby (G2) and Kentucky Derby, and from a speed and depth perspective, the Louisiana preps have looked surprisingly stronger than those in Florida. That makes Mandaloun a more attractive option in this pool than, say, the likely shorter-priced Greatest Honour.