Last week DerbyDeals.com updated its “Top 5 Derby Contenders” list for the 2014 Kentucky Derby. At the top of that list was Todd Pletcher’s, Shanghai Bobby. Shanghai Bobby is undefeated and almost certainly will take home an Eclipse award for the top two-year-old of 2012. Also on the list were a pair trained by last year’s Kentucky Derby winning trainer Doug O’Neill. O’Neill boasts Know More and He’s Had Enough in the top prospects, but it looks like his colt, Goldencents, will be a factor on the road to the Derby also. You can keep up with the points standings for the “Kentucky Derby Championship Series” on DerbyDeals.com as well!
Fan favorite and 2011 Preakness winner Shackleford will run the last race of his career at Churchill Downs this weekend. He will take part in the feature race in the “Black Friday” program, and it will take place under the lights with a post time of 5:35 pm. His trainer, Dale Romans, had the option of running him in the Cigar Mile at Aqueduct, but chose to keep him in Louisville, where he was won twice previously. Taking part in the Grade I Clark Handicap along with Shackleford will be a couple of familiar names, including a 2012 Kentucky Derby participant. Take Charge Indy finished 19th in this year’s Derby and was found to have an injury soon afterward. He was shelved until last month when he finished third at the Fayette Stakes at Keeneland. Another one to keep an eye on will be Bourbon Courage, who will be jockeyed by Leonardo Goncalves. Bourbon Courage most recently ran second in the Indiana Derby.
Goldencents is now two for three in his career after winning the Delta Downs Jackpot last weekend. The Doug O’Neill colt showed great stamina as he led the race wire to wire. The horse is partially owned by University of Louisville basketball coach Rick Pitino and has to be considered a serious contender for the 2014 Kentucky Derby. Kelly Breen’s Bern Identity finished second and is now 3-2-1 to start out his career.
Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky is closing out its fall meet this weekend. The last weekend of the season includes Thanksgiving Day racing which is a traditional outing for many families in the area. The featured races will be the Falls City Handicap on Thanksgiving Day, the Clark Handicap on Friday, and the Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes on Saturday. The Kentucky Jockey Club Stakes is a part of the “prep season” and is a points race in the Kentucky Derby Championship Series.
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