Saturday will see 10 horses go to post in a solid Kentucky Derby prep race – the Fountain of Youth – at Gulfstream Park.
The 1-1/16-mile prep is the 14th race on the Gulfstream card and is set for a 3:10 p.m. PDT post. The race is worth 50-20-10-5 points towards earning a spot in the Derby.
Following are the horses that could have a say in the race.
Greatest Honour (Shug McGaughey/Jose Ortiz/9-5) is your morning line favorite and looks every bit worthy of that role. He is coming off an impressive win in the Holy Bull at Gulfstream, using a sweeping move heading for home to blow by the field and win by five lengths. There has been a pair of maintenance works since then and he looks ready for another big one.
Fire at Will (Michael Maker/Kendrick Carmouche/7-2) is the second choice and will draw a lot of attention as to how he performs. When last seen he was winning the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Turf in early November at 30-1. He has one start over a main track and that came in the slop at Saratoga early last September. He has won two straight since then, both on the grass. An interesting price for a horse that has been off so long with a very average work tab for the return. I am going to have to see one before jumping on board.
Prime Factor (Todd Pletcher/Irad Ortiz/5-1) is one of two runners at that price. The horse was the favorite in the Holy Bull and was coming off a maiden score in his only start. He was highly touted, then went out and laid an egg in his first start around two turns, tiring to a third-place finish, beaten nine lengths. He has had two decent works since the Holy Bull, and I find every reason to expect more here.
Drain the Clock (Saffie Joseph/Edgard Zayas/5-1) was an impressive winner of the Swale, a 7-furlong sprint on the undercard of the Holy Bull. This will the first start around two turns in a five-race career that has produced four wins. If he sticks with his past form, expect him to be on the lead or pushing the pace.
King’s Ovation (Dale Romans/Corey Lanerie/15-1) was second in the Swale and could be an interesting runner in his first try at two turns. He appeared to have plenty of run at the top of the lane but couldn’t find any running room. How he handles the distance remains to be seen, but if he can, his style may be a great fit. There has not been much to brag about yet and he was 36-1 in the Swale. He might need the distance – we will find out here.
Tarantino (Rodolphe Brisset/Jose Ortiz/18-1) opened some eyes in the Holy Bull, finishing second at 26-1. He entered the Holy Bull as his first start on dirt – first three on grass – and showed that he could handle the distance and the surface. Not sure about the win angle here but could certainly be a factor in the exotics.
By Dennis Miller