Ocean Knight Trying to Make Waves in $150,000 Discovery Handicap
Category : News
Wed 11/11/2015 - 09:01 EST
On Wednesday at Aqueduct, the featured race is the $150,000 Discovery Handicap. A Grade 3 race scheduled to be run at a mile and an eighth on the main track, the stakes has drawn a field of seven colts and geldings.
Ocean Knight has been tabbed as the morning line favorite at odds of 2-1 for trainer Kiaran McLaughlin. A three-year-old son of Curlin, the bay colt was purchased for $320,000 as a juvenile by Stonestreet Stables and has won three of his five starts. He returned in August off of a five month layoff and finished second in an allowance race. Last time out, he won an allowance race at Belmont Park and will be stepping back up to graded stakes company. Irad Ortiz, Jr. will be aboard from post two.
Inconsistent Madefromlucky trying to rebound
Second choice at morning line odds of 5-2 is Madefromlucky, one of three horses in the race for trainer Todd Pletcher. A chestnut son of Lookin at Lucky, he has been on the board in seven of his eleven starts and is a multiple graded stakes winner. He is trying to rebound after finishing seventh in the Pennsylvania Derby (G2) and has had a recent bullet workout. John Velazquez will be in the irons and they will break from the rail.
Smart Transition looking for first graded stakes win
Also in the field at morning line odds of 5-1 is Smart Transition for trainer John Sadler. Bred and owned by Arnold Zetcher, the three-year-old son of Smart Strike is out of a graded stakes winning mare and has won two of his seven starts. He has been on the shelf since finishing sixth in the Travers Stakes (G1) and will be trying to earn his first graded stakes victory. Junior Alvarado will be aboard and they will break from the outside post.
There will always be Kentucky Derby entrants that would be much better suited to skip the race entirely and find a better spot if not for the gusto of their well-meaning owners, but the Road to the Derby point qualifying system has been remarkably efficient at making the race more of a level-playing field since its inception four years ago.
On Saturday at Keeneland, the featured race is the $250,000 Dixiana Elkhorn Stakes. Scheduled to be run at one mile on the turf, the Grade 2 event has drawn a field of eight colts and geldings.
With a largely underwhelming, and thus far, slow, group of three year-olds set to contest the 2016 Kentucky Derby, logical handicappers searching for a pick outside of the undefeated and likely highly-favored Nyquist may have already begun the hand-wringing process.
On Friday at Oaklawn Park, the featured race is the $600,000 Apple Blossom Stakes. Restricted to fillies and mares, the Grade 1 event will be contested at a mile and a sixteenth on the main track and has drawn a field of six.