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HomeHorse RacingLouie's Look Ahead - 2023 Ohio Derby Day

Louie’s Look Ahead – 2023 Ohio Derby Day

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We’re heading to the outskirts of Cleveland this Saturday – happy Ohio Derby to those of you who celebrate.

Race 9 The Daniel Stearns Cleveland Cup. 1 ⅛ M, dirt. 3YO OH-Bred. $75k. (Pick4)

This is the Ohio Derby for Ohio-breds. None of the horses in this race have ever gone the full 9 furlongs, but a few ran in the prep race for this race – the Green Carpet at Belterra Park, going 8 ½ furlongs.

The standout of that race was 6 Trojan Tale, who routed for the first time and loved it. Keeps jockey Ferrin Peterson in the irons, and looks to make it three in a row. Trainer Mike Maker goes turf to dirt very well, too. Obvious favorite, IMO.

3 Paint The Town has run well in the mud before, and I think there’s a decent chance we’re looking at a wet track come Saturday. The Gorham/ Diaz combo hits at 29% at Thistledown, and after getting the experience over two turns, should be part of the final equation.

2 Fair and Square and 4 Returnonivestment are both interesting runners, as well; I would lean toward 2 F&S.

Top selections: 6, 3, 2

Race 10 The George Lewis Memorial. 1/16 M, dirt. 3+up OH-Bred. $75k. (Pick 3)

I’ll take a couple of older, hard-knockin’ horses in this one. The 8 Big Truck is a deserved 3/1 favorite, 3-for-9 at the distance. Won his last two going two turns, and is getting back to routing here. Makes tons of sense. The 3 Mobil Solution is an 8YO gelding who is 30-9-9-5 at Thistledown in his career, 7-for-21 at the distance, and won this race previously. Give me these two on top.

I’m fascinated by 5 Venture On, who by numbers isn’t impressive, but the times say otherwise. I think there’s a chance he’s part of the final equation.

Top selections: 8, 3, 5

Race 11 The Lady Jacqueline. 1 ⅛ M, dirt. F&M 3+up. $250k. (DD)

8 Interstatedaydream is carrying the most weight in this one – and sometimes that’s a massive giveaway in these types of fields. She won the G2 Black Eyed Susan last year, and is 2-for-2 at the distance. Cox & Geroux, they are making the trip for a reason.

6 Sixtythreecaliber ran huge last time behind an even bigger effort from Idiomatic in the G3 Shawnee at Churchill. Drop in class here a likely help, and she has won at the distance.

5 Misty Veil has put together a series of good runs this year, including in the DuPont last out with Interstatedaydream. I think she can absolutely turn the tables with a little added distance.

Top selections: 8, 6, 5

Race 12 G3 Ohio Derby. 1 ⅛ M, dirt. 3YO. $500k.

The best horse in this race, bar none, is 4 Two Phil’s. By and large, the best 3YOs run in the KY Derby, and he ran second in a fair Derby. *Every* metric points to him winning this race, from his speed figures to the trainer stats, etc. If you single in the sequence, this is it.

3 Bishop’s Bay lost to Belmont winner Arcangelo by a head last out in the G3 Peter Pan, and is the second most likely winner here. If he improves off his last effort, he can win.

Two unknowns for me are the 7 Lord Miles coming out of a Wood Memorial win (and a steward’s scratch in the KY Derby), a full two and a half months ago. I think he’s in over his head here. The 8 Hayes Strike has won 3 times, with 2 wins this year – both with Lasix. I’ll pass.

Top selections: 4, 3

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