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Handicapping - Pedigree - History - Dosage

Excellent Timing

Not This Time

I was supposed to finish and post the last in the series of three articles looking at the three categories, Speed, Midrange and Stamina, but I received another email from our buddy Brian. Just like he did with Code of Honor in 2018, Brian has a way of destroying me and my peace of mind at the very beginning of the Derby season.

He sent me the name of Excellent Timing this time and he hooked me again. Just like with Code of Honor, as soon as you look at the breeding and then look at the way the two year old is running, everything must be put on hold - stop the presses! We have magnificence in the house. This guy has that potential that gets your heart pumping, plus, the horse is gorgeous. Beautiful dark coat like Bold Ruler, almost black. Hard to even begin this article, I cannot contain the excitement. Brian just emailed out of the blue and immediately after watching his two races, it was time to pen an article. Not too sure where to even start. We have a potential monster here and a serious shot at a Champion in the making.

I guess I'll start first with the St. Simon factor. When it comes to Kentucky Derby players, the strong influence that line-breeds directly to St. Simon through the blood of the top major sires is undeniable. The top four influences for Excellent Timing all line-breed directly to St. Simon (and his father Galopin)


Northern Dancer - 11.72%

Secretariat - 10.94%

Bold Ruler - 8.20%

Nearco - 8.01%

TOTAL: 38.87%

Bold Ruler

Excellent Timing is the son of Not This Time and grandson to the listed chef (C) Giant's Causeway. Not This Time is half brother to Liam's Map and started his career with fireworks, winning his second maiden attempt, winning the Iroquois Stakes, and taking second in the Breeders Cup Juvenile. He was retired to Taylor Made Farms after sustaining an injury after that race which was quite unfortunate. Not This Time was considered one of the best two year olds of 2016 at that time and with his breeding, looked to have it all for the 10f Derby. Unmatched speed coupled with severe stamina, a product of Giant's Causeway, the listed Classic Chef who held a race record of 13-9-4-0.

His mare's sire is Pioneerof the Nile, winner of the Cashcall Futurity, Robert B. Lewis, San Felipe Stakes, and the Santa Anita Derby. He came in second in the Kentucky Derby, losing to the 50-1 longshot Mine that Bird on a muddy mess of a track.


2nd Generation:

Giant's Causeway (Classic)

3rd Generation:

Nureyev (Classic)

4th Generation:

Unbridled (Brilliant, Intermediate)

Northern Dancer (Brilliant, Classic)

Secretariat (Intermediate, Classic)

DP = 2-2-14-0-0 (18) DI = 1.57 CD = 0.33

Mare Profile = 2-10-3-11-2 Speed = 12 Stamina = 13 Index = 0.94 Triads = 15-24-16

Classic Numbers. Top and Bottom. Gorgeous. Stamina. Perfection.

His chefs are handing him a .33 CD which translates to approximately 9.75 furlongs just from the sires alone. The 14 points in that Classic center shows complete dominance in that profile. Minimal speed inheritance is depicted in that profile. Just looking at the chefs profile, specifically at the 2 points he received in the Brilliant category of his chefs profile, it would appear that this guy would not be one to run out of that gate too quickly, but rather, one who would lag back a bit and reserve his speed for later in the race. Looking at the minimal 2 points gathered in the mares brilliant category as well, it would seem fitting that he would run directly in line with his inheritance in that regard. The stamina is right there and of course he would have ample time to get in gear as the race distances progress. This is how his numbers fall, so this would usually align with a colts style as well as his distance capability. So you would think. He inherited barely any early short speed from both his mares and his sires. The speed comes in through the mares at around 8f, and from the sires at 9f - not 6.5.

The mare profile is arranged so bad-ass. I love it. It has a pattern of an extended W. Low Brilliant. High Intermediate. Low Classic. High Solid. Low Professional. Those numbers stagger almost perfectly and the balance of that placement ends up fairly close to dead center in the middle of that Classic Slot. When the mare CD is calculated, he falls at a negative 0.04 CD.

Combining the mares with the chefs, Excellent Timing ends up with an optimum distance of exactly 10.5f. Isn't that beautiful?! Oh yes it is!

But what is even more beautiful, is that the horse doesn't seem to really care about actually running to his apparent style through his dosage numbers. He wants to run to his own beat. When you have a stamina horse whose numbers are screaming that he would be a mid to late runner type horse who bypasses that as a young two year old and instead, decides that he wants to be at the top of the pack right out of the gate, you are looking at a stamina laden speed demon. Consider this... we have speed demons and sprinters early on who all run out the gate and sweep these short early races on a daily basis. As we get closer to the Derby, these sprinters and speedsters are weeded out and we must then determine if those that are left in that speed category (those who tend to run in the perfect position up front) have the stamina to sustain that speed the entire 10f out on the lead. Some can, most can't. When you get a stamina guy who beats the living daylights out of the speedsters OUT ON THE LEAD, you automatically know that they have the stamina to sustain that speed. They won't falter and they have the perfect position WAY OUT FRONT of the other stamina guys. His only competition left with be the few speedsters who have the mare stamina to continue on with him. This is why guys like Gun Runner were to hard to beat. A stamina horse out front, close to or on the lead is one of the most deadly and lethal animals, especially as the distances go further. There is no better horse on the planet than a speed freak lead runner packed with Classic stamina.

Excellent Timing has the style, the breeding, the will and determination to be a major player going forward. He has the 10f in the bag, there is no doubt at all about that based on his numbers. If this guy manages to grab that lead with his speed, he will not let up. He will not wind down. He will be unbeatable the longer these distances go. It is very rare when a stamina boy comes along and exhibits speed on the lead or even speed down the lane at 2 years old. I can think of a few off the top of my head at the moment, Le Vent, Gun Runner and Shared Belief. This is why two of those guys became my favorite horses of all time. And they certainly did not disappoint throughout their short careers. Speed + Inbred Stamina = Beast.

E.T. has been in two races. His first maiden attempt was not successful. He had to settle for 2nd when a little speedster, Horn of Plenty, grabbed him in the end running 6.5f. Breeding-wise, Excellent Timing was at a great disadvantage in this race, however, out on the lead, it didn't matter. Speedsters and sprinters will always have the greatest advantage at that short minimal distance, but for a first time test, taking second with his breeding was still highly commendable.

His second race, back again at the same 6.5f, this time he would not be denied and he exploded on that track. Nowhere near as slow as his first attempt, he demolished the field out on the lead with plenty to spare if he wanted to run it again.

When you watch that race, just looking at him he would appear to look fairly "normal" out on the lead and sprinting down that lane just like any "normal" speedster with a very high chef index who was loaded in short early speed. This is opposite of what this horse is made of. He has barely any inbred early speed as depicted in his profiles. That stretch run reminds me so much of Shared Belief's 6f maiden race back in 2013. These types of stamina horses are not built for these short races and they certainly are not built to sprint down the stretch at such a short distance. When you see it unfold at 2 years old, you know you are looking at a potential monster. You know he hasn't nearly shown the best of himself yet and that his shining time comes at the Classic distance.


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