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Handicapping - Pedigree - History - Dosage

Hidden in Plain View


There are many times when a colt is out there on the trail and he remains hidden in plain view. Nominated for the Triple Crown by their connections, built so perfectly for one of those races, and yet, remains completely lost in the shuffle.

Sometimes, a very good trainer has a strategy and we can only hope that the strategy doesn’t backfire and everything plays out as it should. This could be the case with trainers like Todd Pletcher and Chad Brown. Patience and faith in these instances is all we can hold on to.

Sometimes, they run against their advantage and their breeding, in race after race, and then they eventually end up in Optional Claiming races. Potential superstars and champions who might never get their chance based on their early careers. This happens a lot and we see it year after year.

Most all of the trainers know what they are doing, don’t get me wrong - but sometimes it is hard to gauge what they are thinking and why they do what they do. There may be a chance that everything eventually pans out for these guys and they are positioned to finally display what they are made of and what they are built for. These are the ones to look out for because based on their pedigree, the 10f Kentucky Derby or the 12f Belmont Stakes is what they should be pointed to. These are the ones to watch and see how they are handled going forward.

Based on their performances to date, we can judge the evidence against those PP sheets to see if they are aligning with their breeding and if they are capitalizing off their charts. With both the defeats and the successes within their PP sheets, one can judge if being built for a certain race is even within the stated potential. In some cases, either the horse is on the wrong track, or being forced to run the wrong distance, or made to run against style; therefore, he is obviously being read completely wrong by his connections and also by the betting public.

I would never presume to know more than the professional trainer, however, when you see a chart configured in a certain manner and evidence is presented that aligns with it, I often wonder if it is blindness on their part, or if it is a very smart strategy on their part. Unfortunately, most will fall by the wayside and never get their opportunity to shine.

Is it strategy on the part of the trainer? Is it because they are being asked to run in the normal manner with short maidens and speedy tracks as normally dictated? Is it because of greed and arrogance, looking for the same speedy colt who can be manipulated into heavy purse wins? Is it because some trainers know exactly what they have and they know there is no reason to put them at risk so early in their development? Each question answers with a Yes in all of the cases.

Keep your eye on the following colts. They are built extremely and historically perfect for either the Kentucky Derby or the Belmont Stakes or both. I am not holding back on my critique on some of these colts here as far as how these guys are built and why their handling is basically a form of punishment that could possibly curtail a future champion. Again, hopefully it is more strategy than ignorance. Some of them are being perfectly handled but we have not seen them in the lime-light yet. If the few on this list continue to be lead correctly, we should be hearing their names soon. If some of them are not, we should see them show up in a claiming race because of how they were handled in the first place. All of these listed colts should be in your virtual stables and tracked along the way. At the very least, we shall see them after the Triple Crown and these guys always have Breeders Weekend to look forward to.


Candy Ride – Sweet Aloha (Western Cat)

DP = 2-1-5-2-0 (10) DI = 1.22 CD = 0.30

Mare Profile = 1-5-6-6-10 Speed = 6 Stamina = 16 Index = 0.41 Triads = 12-17-22

This horse has the potential to be a force to be reckoned with. In the barn of Christophe Clement, this guy has performed in such a beautiful manner, and he has the breeding to eventually knock our socks off once his mane gets back in a gate. He is built with extreme stamina with a race record of 5 starts, 4 wins and 1 place in races from as short as 5.5f up to only 7f. Either wiring the track or stalking. Completely against his breeding and showing speed on 4 different tracks. This guy has the potential to be something extremely special with this type of breeding and would probably flash greater figures if he ran even further distances at tracks like Aqueduct or when he gets himself to Churchill Downs. Exquisite form and speed coming from this stamina horse but truly needs more furlongs to distance himself away from those speed demons who are built for those 5.5f and 7f distances.

His last race, back on 11/21/2021, 6f at Aqueduct, running on a more conducive surface, he was able to beat his speedy opponents by 8-1/4 lengths. This horse is screaming for distance and wants no parts of a slick track. He has major potential and hopefully Clemente sees to it that he gets his shot at a prep. Time is not on his side for the Derby, but the Belmont, with his inbred stamina, certainly is. Last spotted on 3/16, breezing 3f at Belmont. He's coming back!


Candy Ride – Her Smile (Include)

DP = 2-5-8-1-0 (16) DI = 2.20 CD = .50

Mare Profile = 4-3-4-5-12 Speed = 7 Stamina = 17 Index = 0.45 Triads = 11-12-21

This son of Candy Ride is trained by Bob Baffert. He has run in two races so far, both at Santa Anita. He came in first place in his 6.5f maiden stalking the lead in normal “Baffert fashion.” His second race at 8.5f, he came from off the pace, running wide, and only managed third in a field of five. This horse is not built for the lead in any way, shape, or form, nor is he built for a speed favoring track like Santa Anita, but of course, the Baffert playbook will always take precedence over the horse. The fact that this guy actually won that short race on the lead on that track points to something special. This horse should be as far away from the speed bias of Santa Anita as humanly possible but of course, the owners only care about Baffert’s name and they are completely disregarding the make-up of this colt.

One look at the configurations of his mares balance in conjunction with chefs .50 CD and the obvious lean in the mares profile (4-3-4-5-12) is overwhelmingly weighted in the 16+ Professional slot. I often wonder if the connections are simply blind or is it that they could care less how the colt is built. Do they prefer to mold them into what they perceive is the winning recipe based only on the “astute trainer’s preference” or have they not even taken the time to see what the horse wants himself?

His mares are boasting a -.64 CD which is a potential distance capability of 13f from them alone. When combined at 50-50, he lands at 12.5f. Both his chef’s and his mare’s configurations are screaming rear runner, deeper track, longer distance. The facts of both of his races are tell-tale signs that he is a fast horse who needs distance. He was able to display his speed going short and when given the opportunity to run off the pace in the manner in which he was bred, he ran out of track. This colt is running very well and much aligned with his breeding. If this colt’s owners have the opportunity to take their heads out of the sand and remove this guy from Baffert’s speed-thinking clutches, they should get him on the East Coast, send him directly to Aqueduct or the Fairgrounds and let him run the way he was built. Santa Anita is not the track for his breeding. This guy is serious Belmont Stakes material and will only suffer the same fate as Solomini if he isn’t relocated immediately.

The Gatekeeper

Arrogate – Succeeding (Smart Strike)

DP = 7-18-11-0-0 (36) DI = 5.55 CD = 0.89

Mare Profile = 5-6-3-10-7 Speed = 11 Stamina = 17 Index = 0.70 Triads = 14-19-20

The configurations of this horse are screaming Kentucky Derby. He was nominated for the Triple Crown races by someone in his camp. He was just let loose on February 26th at Turfway Park traveling 8f on AWS. I must hand it to Casse for skipping the dreaded 6f on a speedy track with this guy but where was he at two?

This guy is packing 36 total chefs points and he has a running style that is pointing directly to his packed up mares. Fantastic Derby potential at 10f who showed us in his sole maiden performance that 8f is way too short even on AWS. He wants 10f and he wants to show it off late. There must be a very good reason why this horse was left to percolate all this time and hopefully it isn’t too late to capitalize in May. If it is, watch out for this magnificently set-up colt in the future.

Ridley’s Major

Gun Runner – Grand Sophia (Giant’s Causeway)

DP = 3-2-13-0-0 (18) DI = 1.77 CD = 0.44

Mare Profile = 3-6-5-11-4 Speed = 9 Stamina = 15 Index = 0.71 Triads = 14-22-20

This guy is in the barn of Chad Brown, one of the best trainers out there and a complete master and highly respected with training champion turf horses. This Triple Crown nominee has had two maiden races so far, both at 8.5f on turf, at Belmont Park and Gulfstream. He won neither of them, came in 2nd and 4th. He trains on the dirt every time, consistently, at Gulfstream Park. Knowing how great Chad Brown is, this is a clear-cut strategy. Watch this guy when he debuts on dirt at a longer distance. Mid-pack runner who is screaming longer distance on dirt. Chad Brown is getting him ready for it.


Pioneerof the Nile – Uptown Twirl (Twirling)

DP = 2-3-1-0-0 (6) DI = 11.00 CD = 1.17

Mare Profile = 4-4-6-10-5 Speed = 8 Stamina = 15 Index = 0.69 Triads = 14-20-21

Trained by Steve Asmussen with two races so far. One at Fairgrounds and one at Horseshoe Indianapolis. This horse belongs nowhere near those two tracks. Again, is it strategy to pull out the stamina or are they missing it completely. This horse at Saratoga, Churchill, Gulfstream or Santa Anita would have his points already. He wants distance on a speedy track and he wants to run late, taking his time in the early stages. He is following his mare’s stamina influence already but his chefs want a better track. When Asmussen puts him on the right surface at 9f -10f, this horse will show us what he is made of. All the signs in both of his defeats are saying to follow his breeding and when he finally does hit the right scenario, he will explode.

Flying Drummer

DP = 2-5-5-0-0 (12) DI = 3.80 CD = 0.75

Mare Profile = 4-4-7-12-3 Speed = 8 Stamina = 15 Index = 0.76 Triads = 15-23-22

Gun Runner – Salamera (Successful Appeal)

Another adverse product of Bob Baffert’s playbook who needs a new trainer when the owners finally wake the hell up and take a look at what they own. Disregarding this colt's breeding, the horse is sent out, as usual, to wire a 6f maiden. Baffert doesn't care if that isn't the way the horse is built. He wants them all to wire and capitalize on that speed biased track and for whatever he has hiding in his medicine chest back at the barn. This horse, against his breeding, pulls off a second place trophy. Relentless Baffert makes him do it again, forced to the lead to try to wire, with the same results – second place. When his third race comes, the Lecomte, the horse simply didn’t feel like running and gave no effort at all.

Who can blame him? Why was he put into this Graded Stakes prep race in the first place? He wasn’t even a maiden winner. But that is the greed and the arrogance of a trainer who cares not a speck for the horse. Baffert's arrogance put that horse in that prep and he pushed to where the horse didn't even put up a fight. After the Lecomte debacle and shredding this guy's confidence, the “magician” throws this horse back into a maiden race and apparently lays off of his insistence of forcing him to run on the lead. Flying Drummer was left to run the way he wants, up to 5 lengths off the front lead at one point, and ended up winning the race. This guy is bred very nicely, who most likely wants to run between mid-pack and rear, and he needs to get as far away from the speed traps of Del Mar and Santa Anita sooner than later.

Whoever owns this horse would be wise to take the Baffert suspension seriously and get him to a new trainer immediately. No matter how you slice it, the horse has wasted precious time being forced to be turned into something he is not by a trainer who only wants carbon copies stationed in his barn. This horse is a product of his mares with a 7 point spread in stamina, killer stamina dominant triads with chef speed on the side. If Flying Drummer makes a well-deserved get-away from this barn and gets put where he is trained properly as opposed to being constrained by his trainer’s playbook, he could potentially be a real force going forward. All the evidence is there.

Credit Event

Not This Time – Red Bottoms (Candy Ride)

DP = 1-0-9-0-0 (10) DI = 1.22 CD = 0.20

Mare Profile = 2-8-4-10-4 Speed = 10 Stamina = 14 Index = 0.73 Triads = 14-22-18

Chad Brown trained Not This Time Colt who has run only one maiden on January 20th of this year. He won it traveling 1 mi 70 yards on the AWS at Gulfstream. He was not up front with the pace, but came from the back. He has been training consistently ever since his win and training on turf ever since 2/25. Not sure why the horse has not reappeared to compete since his AWS maiden win but he is nominated and he looks to be a sensational prospect for wherever Mr. Brown wants to direct him.

Spin Wheel

Hard Spun – Zinzay (Smart Strike)

DP = 7-13-17-1-0 (38) DI = 3.00 CD = 0.68

Mare Profile = 1-5-5-12-4 Speed = 6 Stamina = 16 Index = 0.48 Triads = 11-22-21

Back in November of 2021, this horse won his 3rd attempt at his maiden traveling 8.5f at Churchill Downs coming from the back of the pack. That ideal race displayed everything that needed to be seen as far as how this horse is configured and what type of potential he had. They first tried the turf, which he rejected. This is a 3.00 horse with a packed and loaded chef dirt profile, of course he rejected it. Brilliant and Intermediate at 7 and 13. His second attempt at Keeneland, on dirt at 8.5f, showed Spin Wheel starting in post 9, staying steady in 7th position and finally making his move up to 4th. Short distance and green, with the loaded speedster Grand Sonata wiring the field (DP = 10-13-13-2-0 (38) DI = 3.47 CD = 0.82 with severe mare speed influence) Not the most ideal foe at 8.5f.

Spin Wheel is packed and loaded top and bottom and he is stamina driven. He shows it in his style, he shows it from the chefs and he shows it from the mares. He needs distance. Belmont distance. He doesn’t want or need trips to Gulfstream Park or Tampa Bay to continue to try to luck out with hopes of a lead speedster trying to go wire to wire and failing. He has nothing for the Kentucky Derby, so to try to force speed out of this guy in hopes of getting a Derby gate is futile. They have him working out in Florida of all places, breezing horrendous times at 4f and 5f. He wants no part of early speed and the workouts do absolutely nothing as far as conditioning him for what he is bred and built for. He wants distance and he needs training that coincides with that. He should be breezing at 7f and 8f and training hard for June 11th. He belongs at Belmont Park. They nominated him for the Triple Crown but they are blinded by the Kentucky Derby. This horse is built for the Belmont Stakes.


Into Mischief – Artemis (Empire Maker)

DP = 2-3-1-0-0 (6) DI = 11.00 CD = 1.17

Mare Profile = 5-8-5-9-5 Speed = 13 Stamina = 14 Index = 0.96 Triads = 18-22-19

Todd Pletcher debuted this guy at Belmont Park back on September 30th of 2021. He won the 6.5f maiden by 4.5 lengths stalking the lead. The lead guy did not falter, he just got defeated terribly in the stretch and had to settle for second. Mo Donegal was also in this race and was beaten badly. And that’s it. Nobody knows why he was side-lined and hopefully it was just a case of Pletcher keeping him safe and on the back-burner. He has been consistently working out passed 3f since February, and posting nice figures at 4f and 5f breezes. Never under-estimate Pletcher, he knows he has a hot one. With this guy’s advantageous chart both down in Florida and at Churchill for the Derby, the only thing standing between this horse and a purse pay-out on the first Saturday in May is points. Watch out if this guy is finally put in a prep gate. He will fly. These configurations are incredible for the Derby and if it rains, we need him desperately on our tickets. Only time will tell.


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