by Dylan Jamulowicz
Louisiana kicks off their Kentucky Derby Prep series
The Saturday card at The Fairgrounds features 12 races with four stakes and a handicap race. The feature race is the 200k LeComte Stakes for three year olds. This race is the local prep for the Risen Star Stakes that will kick off the start for the Louisiana road to the Triple Crown. The race features a full field of 14, let’s see who will jumpstart their way to Louisville!
Fair Grounds Race 11 – Grade III 1 Mile & 70 Yards Post Time – 6:21pm (Eastern)
Advance Weather: Partly Cloudy, 60s
I will start with #7 MO TOM (7/2), the Tom Amoss trainee comes in with a solid record. Out of four career starts he has 2 wins and 2 places, but, what I like about him the most is his running style. He has a stalker running style, enough speed to put himself into the game and get involved, but doesn’t need the lead to win. This is a big asset to have in a big field. Amoss also had high numbers in this 45-90 day layoff period, (wins at 26%), there is plenty to like with him.
Another horse who will get some play will be #13 DESTIN (6-1). He was victorious at first asking and then failed as a 30 cent on a dollar favorite last time, but he was involved from the start and pressed the pace before finishing second. He is talented and as most Todd Pletcher horses, will probably be overbet, and while he looks to have some ability and a nice stalkish running style, regular jockey Javier Castellano will not travel with him to the Fairgrounds. I know it’s early in the Triple Crown season and Castellano has plenty to ride at Gulfstream, it seems like this horse isn’t a part of Pletchers “A Team” and that makes me wonder if he is worth playing.
Finally, two wildcards in the race are #3 UNCLE WALTER (6-1) and #5 DOLPHUS (10-1). UNCLE WALTER will navigate two turns for the first time in his racing career and we’ll see if he can fire first off a little freshening. DOLPHUS has been sort of a buzz horse, however, after winning at first asking, he was defeated last time by #10 PINACLE PEAK (10-1) and #15 TOM’S READY (5-1) who don’t look to be the biggest contenders in this field.
There looks to be plenty of speed in this race, so that will lead me to playing MO TOM. His running style and trainer stats in this position should be further enhanced from having some speed in the race and the colt has done little wrong in his prior four starts. The race looks wide-open and should be an exciting start to the road to the Kentucky Derby via Louisiana!
Win / Place: #7