Louisville, Ky. – The Kentucky Derby undercard includes six graded stakes leading up to the Grade 1 Kentucky Derby. The graded races preceding the Derby will kickoff at 1:13 p.m. EDT with the Grade 1 Humana Distaff (Race 6) on the NBC Sports Network. Race 11, the Grade 1 Woodford Reserve Turf is scheduled to go to post at 5:25 p.m.
The flagship network NBC Sports will take over the undercard races at 2:30 p.m. through the Derby which will go to post at approximately 6:46 p.m.
Here’s a capsule look at the three graded races heading into the Derby, making up a Pick-4, ending in Race 12, the 145th running of the Kentucky Derby. It’s a tough sequence that goes 13 x 14 x 13 x 19 that will certainly reward the multi-race player that hits the sequence.
Race 9 – The American Turf (G2) – 1 1/16 miles (Turf) – 3:37 p.m. EDT
3-Digital Age (6-1) looks ready to step up for Chad Brown and should like the wet turf. Irad Ortiz, Jr. rides for the best turf trainer in the country. 1-A Thread of Blue (3-1) was the best 3-year-old turfer coming out of the Gulfstream meet. Ontario-bred 8-Avie’s Flatter (6-1) comes out of a nice win at Keeneland after running exclusively at Woodbine for trainer Josie Carroll. 10-Henley’s Joy (8-1) is a Kitten’s Joy colt that was just being Avie’s in the Transylvania.
Post Time Outlook: 1 –Digital Age; 2 –A Thread of Blue; 3 –Avie’s Flatter; 4 –Henley’s Joy
Race 10 – Pat Day Mile (G2) – 1 Mile (Dirt) – 4:28 p.m. EDT
This one looks like 10-Instagrand’s (6-5) to lose. Will enjoy the return to one turn races after taking a spin on the Derby trail, he’ll enjoy the cutback in distance to boot. 15-Global Campaign (5-1) should draw in with a wet track scratch and is the most likely challenger to the favorite. A horse that has improved and should like the cutback is 7-Mr. Money (12-1) who is a Goldencents colt that also has a win over the track. 1-Dream Maker (15-1) could surprise as solid odds and has a win over the track in his maiden debut.
Post Time Outlook: 1 –Instagrand; 2 –Global Campaign; 3 –Mr. Money; 4 –Dream Maker
Race 11 – Old Forester Turf Classic (G1) – 1 1/8 miles (Turf) – 5:25 p.m. EDT
12-Bricks and Mortar (5-2) relished the wet ground at Gulfstream in the Pegasus Turf Classic and should get similar footing on Saturday. 2-Raging Bull (5-1) looks like Chad’s best shot in here. Johnny V gets the call on 9-Synchrony (8-1) who was just steps behind the favorite in the Muniz. 10-Ticonderoga (8-1) steps up in class and looks to be on the improve.
Post Time Outlook: 1 –Bricks and Mortar; 2 –Raging Bull; 3 – Synchrony; 4 –Ticonderoga
Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.