Rebel Stakes preview

by TCI 5 years ago

Jon and Joel discuss a shakeup in the TCI Top 10 after Flashback’s loss in the San Felipe Stakes. Did Verrazano’s Tampa Bay Derby score finally prove enough to move him into the top spot? The TCI boys also look forward to Saturday’s important $600,000 Rebel Stakes (G2) at Oaklawn, and talk about how the pace scenario could become much more contested for Super Ninety Nine this time around. But if ’99’ falls short, who can beat him?

Watch it. Comment.

TCI Top 10

Rank Name Bris Comments
1 Revolutionary 103 Moves into the top spot due to others’ shortcomings, but must earn keeping it in the Louisiana Derby.
2 Verrazano 104 Likely Derby favorite proved that his class and rare talent will take him far, but can it take him 1 ¼ miles?
3 Flashback 99 San Felipe speed dual was a setback, but love the addition of a strong rider like Gomez to harness his speed.
4 Orb 102 Showed quality in FOY when winning from off the pace over a speed-type track; Will only get better.
5 Oxbow 98 Expect him to be a top contender in the Rebel with the upgrade of Smith and running on his home track.
6 Itsmyluckyday 111 Likely FL Derby favorite is clearly the fastest 3yo by speed figs right now, but still has plenty to prove.
7 Tiz the Truth 92 His month-long absence from the work tab is discouraging, but Baffert still hopeful he can make a final prep.
8 Shanghai Bobby 103 Champ is as classy as they come, however, he seems the least likely from this list to excel at 1 ¼ miles.
9 Palace Malice 102 Gets Prado in return to the Big Easy for La. Derby; Must move forward mentally and physically.
10 Vyjack 100 Shown versatility, a dynamic turn of foot, and the will to win; Needs it all against Verrazano in Wood.

OFF: Goldencents

through 3/14/2013


  • 1JoeP

    Joel – Looking forward to Saturdays Rebel. I’m hoping Oxbow and Treasury Bill can take down the Big Favorite Super 99. Treasury Bill was complimented with a win yesterday in an allowance race by War Academy, who last finished 4th in the San Vincente, a race that Treasury Bill finished 2nd. I think there will be plenty of pace in the Rebel, and Treasury Bill will have a big shot. Oxbow with Mike Smith, hopefully will put in a big run also. I Am very impressed with War Academy after watching his allowance win yesterday. Bob Baffert is really high on this horse, and Mike Smith said that this could be his derby mount. Bafftert said he will get War Academy a shot at the derby in one of the upcoming 100 point races in April. What are your views of War Academy as a possible top derby contender? I would love to bet him in exacta boxes with several top contenders in Future Pool 3, I hope he is included in the list, he should be around 30-1. I will be looking to bet my #1 Orb in exacta boxes for future pool 3. Any horse that can beat Violence has to be considered as a serious threat, and he has the pedigree to go 1 1/4, and run down Verrazano. Hoping to get about 12-1 on Orb.

    • Joel Cunningham

      Hey Joe!

      Treasury Bill has quickly become the wise-guy horse for the Rebel, and it’s easy to see why when you look at his stamina-infused pedigree on top and bottom, along with the fact that Baffert’s War Academy looked so good stretching out yesterday coming out of the San Vicente, like you mentoned. I would be shocked if Treasury Bill wasn’t a two-turn horse…don’t even recall off the top of my head the last time I saw a Lemon Drop Kid that was better around one turn than two..maybe Kid Kate who was a stakes filly in NY for Chad Brown – but I digress.

      I am more inclined to go with more experienced off-the-pace horses around two turns in here though. Oxbow has been aggressively managed which makes anyone nervous who is a fan of the horse..I happen to be a fan and love his upside. But if he fires his race I really feel like he may be the horse to beat here because of his ability to stalk Super Ninety Nine and Delhomme early before reeling them in on the turn or stretch… I disagree with those who say Oxbow needs to be with the speed early… he’s clearly a stalker to me, just needs the rider to time his move right. You have to love his tactical speed at a racetrack like Oaklawn where deep closers can be at a disadvantage IMO. That’s what worries me about Treasury Bill doing a lot of things for the first time…shipping, going two turns, closing from further back in a bigger field…

      To me, that’s why I believe Den’s Legacy has a better chance to be the closer that can best impact this race if the pace scenario sets up in his favor. He’s seasoned, honest, and while he may not have the upside of a colt like Treasury Bill I think he figures to improve by getting away from Santa Anita and finally getting a pace to run at late.

      I agree with you about Orb. He’s on a short list of colts that I believe can win the Derby at this point. It’s interesting that you like War Academy too, and I think your pulse on him is right. In this day of racing, you must handicap key trainers to figure out the Derby puzzle IMO, and Pletcher and Baffert have been those guys in recent years. To me, Flashback, Tiz the Truth, Den’s Legacy and War Academy are the four I’ve had in my notes this winter due to their pedigree and flashes of talent that could make them Derby contenders. I agree that after War Academy’s win around two turns yesterday that he now becomes a serious Derby contender heading into the final preps…he has it all this time of year: pedigree, stamina, connections, competitive speed figures, and he’s improving. Everything to like!

  • JR

    Hi Joel, I saw your review of the Rebel on Bloodhorse this race is going to be interesting. When I watched the San Felipe, I think Julien was concerned with Goldenscents only, I don’t think he even saw Hear the Ghost until it was to late. Rider switch with Gomez is probably a good choice. Have you been back to Cayman lately?

    • Joel Cunningham

      Hey JR!

      No Caymans :/ How about you? Hopefully I’ll get somewhere special this summer. But we have the Triple Crown to get past first!
      Julien probably was surprised at how aggressive Flashback got when he moved him outside to the three-path down the backstretch. He had a long hold on him but the horse just didn’t settle. I do believe with Gomez on board he’ll have a much better chance to taking a stronger hold early and getting the horse to relax. Julien is great but his game is finesse, while Garrett obviously has a stronger style, and I’m sure that’s what Baffert believes will better suit Flashback moving forward.
      Rebel should be a good one, and I’m glad it’s a beautiful day at Oaklawn and weather shouldn’t play a factor, like it did in the Southwest obviously. If you’re playing the races today, best of luck!

      • JR

        business will bring me back to Cayman in a few weeks looking forward to a mud slide (best drink on Cayman) . Boy, some Rebel, Lucas must be a real happy chappy now. Joel, what have you heard about Tiz the Truth, not working. Look forward to your re-cap of the Rebel.


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