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Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Can Denis Pop the Cork on Big Brown?

So who has the best chance to pull the upset? Remember, this is the year that the Patriots were undefeated going into the Super Bowl looking unbeatable as the heavy favorites (sound familiar?). A lot of funny things can happen on the way to winning a triple crown. I imagine there are a few jockeys that may make things a tad difficult for Big Bad Team Brown on Saturday (see Edgar Prado). Trying to nail down the horse has the ability to defrock him of the bling on Belmont Day is the challenge.

The probable third or fourth choice in the betting will be Denis of Cork, the third place finisher from the Kentucky Derby, who rallied from last to get the show. He passed as many as ten tired horses during his late closing stretch run. While he still finished eight lengths behind Big Brown, he had a terrible post (#16) to overcome and made up quite a bit of ground late at the shorter 1 1/4 mile distance. Dick Powell really liked his chances in Louisville in his pre-Derby column and played him hard in the one and two holes. His trainer, David Carroll, has been part of a team (Shug McGaughey's) that has uprooted a potential TC champ in the 1989 Belmont. He also "has delivered two sharp workouts since the Derby, including five furlongs in 594/5 seconds last Monday" similar to the sharp works he showed prior to his third place finish in the Run for the Roses. My pre-Derby thoughts were as follows: "nice pedigree, dosage index, maybe underneath in exotics." I am going to give him serious consideration in both the exacta and trifecta (and any pooled superfecta plays) come Saturday, as he figures to land somewhere within the top four spots. Here's hoping his price stays north of 15 to 20-1. The next horse to start studying is Tale of Ekati....

Thanks to the fellow TBA'ers with track day advice and helping hints, I've only been to the last two which had crowds under 50,000. It looks like my annual Bloody Mary at the Blarney Rock across from the Garden will have to be a tad earlier than the past two years!



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