Gotham Stakes & Swale Stakes preview

by TCI 4 years ago

Jon & Joel recap what could have been the biggest weekend to date in the 2014 Triple Crown picture, including key outcomes in last Saturday’s Fountain of Youth and Risen Star Stakes, as well as explain how they effected the TCI Top 10. They also preview Havana’s comeback in this weekend’s Swale, and break down a talent-filled Gotham in New York.

Watch it. Comment.

TCI Top 10

Rank Name Bris Comments
1 Top Billing 98 FOY performance was as good of a third as you’ll see in a Derby prep, considering that nobody wins from last at Gulfstream.
2 Cairo Prince 100 Nothing short of awesome dominating a good Holy Bull group; Classic stamina and peaking early are concerns, talent isn’t.
3 Honor Code 98 His profile is better than stablemate Top Billing’s, but setbacks and missed preps this time of year are worrisome.
4 Shared Belief 102 The champ is a prime example of an immensely talented colt with serious stamina concerns; Recent setbacks don’t help.
5 Strong Mandate 97 Becoming a hard-luck colt like last year’s stablemate Oxbow, but he ran well in the Southwest despite all of the miscues.
6 Conquest Titan 93 Talented closer is now taking the Tampa Bay Derby path, and he’s one of many on this list who’s in need of Derby points.
7 Constitution 96 Showed his promise while crushing a good Gulfstream allowance field, but the water only gets deeper; Big test likely next.
8 Samraat 99 NY-bred has been fast and impressive around two turns; Still green in Withers win, so there’s room for further improvement.
9 Tonalist 93 Ran well behind a loose Constitution over a track that didn’t favor his running style; Physically looks tailor-made for the Classics.
10 Candy Boy 97 Another fast developer who now looks like California’s No. 2 behind Shared Belief, but he’ll likely run further than the champ.

OFF: Matterhorn, Hartford
through 2/28/2014


  • 1JoeP

    Hi Joel – Your clarity to me of horses that you feel can get 1 1/4 has really helped me to trim my list. I definetely like to bet horses that are in form, rather than go for potential. I like your Orb comparison for Top Billing. For me, he seems to be the head of the class now, Shug will either try again in a deep Fla. Derby to pick up needed points, or maybe a better move may be the Wood Memorial, with a lesser field, which plays better to his deep closing style. Either way, I expect him to fire big next race and get the needed points to qualify for the Derby. Here’s my current top 5: #1 Top Billing. #2 Strong Mandate – still a live sleeper to wear the roses, if this sleeping giant of a horse puts it all together, look out! #3 – California Chrome – Training well now, looking for a big performance in the S. Felipe next week to crack your top 10. #4 – Conquest Titan – maybe the best sleeper of them all, he loves CD and I am glad that he will go in TB Derby next week, he needs points to get in. #5 – Honor Code – lukewarm on him now, long layoff since his last race, the Rebel will tell alot if this classy colt will make the Derby or not. Joel, I have a feeling that Shared Belief seems like a slow heeler and will miss the Derby. If he doesn’t race soon, you may have to take him off of yur list.

    • Joel Cunningham

      Hey Joe! The San Felipe will help us understand the California division better for sure. I’m honestly not sold on anything out there yet in terms of the Derby/Triple Crown picture. We’ll see if Chrome can step up!

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