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Post Time: Big fields in Derby undercard races

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

Be sure to check out my Derby advance in Saturday’s print edition, my wet track blog and my Derby feature on Javier Castellano from earlier in the week.

Gene Kershner, a Buffalo-based turf writer, is a member of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association, and tweets @EquiSpace.

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