Brian’s Derby Preps: The Lexington

A quick look at the Lexington…

Keeneland: The Grade 3, $200,000 Lexington at 1 1/16 miles

DERBY KITTEN impressed mightily when flying late to just miss against a nice 3yo turfer in Longhunter last time in a grassy GP stakes; should take to the Poly and gets the call to upset this modest crew with a late rally. SILVER MEDALLION is the horse to beat but wheels back and crosses the country just 14 days after a modest 4th in the GI Santa Anita Derby; G3 winner over synthetics will be tough but also a big underlay. PRIME CUT is the unknown, having never run on synthetics, but he enters off a smart FG allowance win and seems like a comer in a race that doesn’t have much star power; no reason he can’t threaten these at fair odds.

5 thoughts on “Brian’s Derby Preps: The Lexington

  1. If you were to bet the Derby today, who do you like? I enjoy this blog and handicapping insights. Thanks for all the help.

  2. Wasn’t here for a few days, so this actually is a response to yours on Versus the past few days:

    NBC I think got lucky in that I think NYRA didn’t want The Belmont Stakes to move to ESPN. NYRA had The Belmont go back to NBC because of a bigger problem Disney is having: From what I’ve read on message boards devoted to sports broadcasting over the past year-plus, there are a large number of ABC stations west of the Central Time Zone that don’t want sports programming (except for the NFL and college football) on their stations AT ALL because it disrupts regular programming. In some cases in fact, there are ABC stations in the Mountain and Pacific Time zones that apparently make more money on infommercials than regular programming!

    That said, one danger of going to Versus is that it’s “out of sight, out of mind” to many: ESPN is still the 800-pound gorilla of sports, and if it were me in Bettman’s role, I would have paid whatever it took to go back to ESPN because there are a lot of people who have never come back to the NHL following the lockout solely because of it being on Versus, a channel that doesn’t have close to the brand name recognition that ESPN does.

    That said, I actually would not be surprised if in 2012 the Oaks and Derby both wind up in prime time on NBC, with the Oaks in a one-hour broadcast that includes a Derby preview on Friday night from 10:00-11:00 PM ET/7:00-8:00 PM PT (10:40 PM or so local post for the Oaks) while the Derby telecast goes prime time from 7:00-10:00 PM ET/4:00-7:00 PM PT with the Derby under the lights with a 9:25 PM ET post. We might very well have actually seen this happen this year were it not for the fact the deal that had Comcast taking over NBC just went final a couple of months ago, and if the Derby rating holds where it’s been for two years, I think NBC will insist on a prime time Derby in 2012 and beyond because the rating each of the last two years (10.3) would have made the Derby telecast the #1 rated program of the week both times if it qualified for prime time. We may see it anyway so the Derby and Oaks simulcasting to the Asia-Pacific region can greatly expand with the potential for hundreds of millions in new handle.

  3. August, thanks!

    Pam…Thanks for the kind words! If I were betting the Derby today I’d be looking for a horse at a price b/c none of the favorites inspire me in the least and the grim reality is that they are no faster than even some of the longest shots in the race. I’d love to see Sway Away get in, but I don’t think that will happen. Comma To The Top might be my pick right now, if for no other reason than he is fast, likes a fight and will be in front of the 19 others who could have a ton of traffic to deal with.

    Though, stay tuned as that could certainly change!

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