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  • Six Reasons Why Bodemeister Won't Win the Derby

    Great article here from my friend Rich Nilsen: http://agameofskill.com/

    Six reasons why Bodemeister can't win the Derby.

    Who agrees with him? I think it is well written but I disagree on a few points.

  • #2
    I agree with some, but not all, of the article. I could give you 6 reasons why Bodemeister could win the Derby also. I like the fact that he is lightly raced, and love the fact that Baffert is cagey and you can never let him out of anything. He is most definitely my favorite trainer. On the other hand there are a group of horses that I could give you 6 reasons why they could win also, and one of the them is experience, which Bodemeister doesn't have. I think right now there are only a few horses I could cross of the list. This is the strongest Derby field I've seen in years, and the trip is going to make the difference I think. I'm also going to look closely at post position. I'm going to play a 5 horse exacta, and there is no way I will be letting Bodemeister or Dullahan out of it. I think I have to include Union Rags for sure, and the other two are up for grabs.

    It's horse racing and on any given day a horse could really put in a strong performance.

    Good luck to everyone...and one more thing...Bodemeister is most definitely named for Bob Baffert's son. That I found out for sure.

    Comment


    • #3
      I think I agree with all of your points above. I will likely include those three also but I will definitely come up with a horse to key. This field is strong.

      The lightly raced stuff used to bug me, and it is still a toss-out factor if I have to use it to decide between two or three final horses. But it is no longer an automatic toss out the way it used to be. It bothered me about Animal Kingdom last year but the field was so wide open it was not enough to disqualify him. I agree with you that in Bodemeister's case, the fact that he has raced just four times, but all of them are this year, is better (in my mind) than a horse that has only raced four times lifetime spread across two years.

      Bodemeister is one of those horses that if he wins and you tossed him, you kick yourself real hard because his four starts this year look like an automatic include in most years. The biggest drag on him which Rich points out is his front-running style. I don't know if I agree that he can't rate at all, as Rich implies, but he clearly likes to be near the front. And this may not be the best year for that style.

      Fun one this year!

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      • #4
        What about Went The Day Well. He is lightly raced, but proven on dirt, and he could be the wild card here. I'm thinking maybe lightly raced isn't reason enough to dismiss a horse in this field. I'm giving myself a headache trying to narrow this field down. If the money is there a 6 horse exacta box wouldn't be out of line in a race with this caliber of horses. I like that Went The Day Well is a proven dirt horse. I guess another question is the weather. There have been derbies where the track was horrible on Derby Day and that's going to eliminate a lot of horses. I think it's too soon to make any final judgement. I'll probably still be deciding the night before.

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        • #5
          I'm also looking hard at Take Charge Indy. He has some regal breeding, and he does have the best Churchill Downs rider in Calvin Borel. I think you are right about needing a key horse, and I was convinced at first it might be Bodemeister and Dullahan, and now I just don't know. There are a lot of throw outs I think, but there are a lot of keepers too.

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          • #6
            Throw out the unraced at 2 stat, and I think you have a horse very similar to what Big Brown was. Very similar styles.

            BB's field had some talent too with Court Vision and Colonel John. Some good milers came out of there too. Many classically well bred horses to boot. I don't know if Bode can do it, but he's bred to run a while. If he gets a clear trip, he'll be tough to beat.

            Big Brown 2.0??

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            • #7
              It's impossible to throw out any horse that Baffert trains. I know I won't be doing it.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by BottomLine View Post
                What about Went The Day Well. He is lightly raced, but proven on dirt, and he could be the wild card here. I'm thinking maybe lightly raced isn't reason enough to dismiss a horse in this field. I'm giving myself a headache trying to narrow this field down. If the money is there a 6 horse exacta box wouldn't be out of line in a race with this caliber of horses. I like that Went The Day Well is a proven dirt horse. I guess another question is the weather. There have been derbies where the track was horrible on Derby Day and that's going to eliminate a lot of horses. I think it's too soon to make any final judgement. I'll probably still be deciding the night before.
                I'm going to have a hard time getting behind WTDW. Jumping straight from maiden win to BG win doesn't do it for me. As I've said in another post, the BG has become a really strange race. It has become my throw out prep race.

                Because the favorites have held form so well this year, there is no doubt you are going to have to throw out a couple of horses that won their final prep race as the favorite or well bet second choice. That's tough to do but if you don't it will be very hard to make any money this year.

                This year it is extremely important to find the horse that meets two criteria:

                1. Rugged - always runs his race. A "no excuses" kind of horse. Because this year it may be the ride that will separate the serious contenders. I think Dullahan is a good example of this.
                2. Coming into form - Bodemeister may be an example of this. With so many good horses this year, you want the one who is peaking at the right time. Much harder to spot this because Bodemeister (for example) may have peaked in the Arkansas Derby.

                Even a six horse box might be hard to make any money on because everyone will be doing the same thing. If you go that route, you still have to throw a couple of solid horses out and bring in some value horses just to hope to make your money back on the expensive bet.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Crap Shoot View Post
                  Throw out the unraced at 2 stat, and I think you have a horse very similar to what Big Brown was. Very similar styles.

                  BB's field had some talent too with Court Vision and Colonel John. Some good milers came out of there too. Many classically well bred horses to boot. I don't know if Bode can do it, but he's bred to run a while. If he gets a clear trip, he'll be tough to beat.

                  Big Brown 2.0??
                  I had back up money on BB but was not a big fan. I was very surprised he overcame his post position. He faced a decent field but this field is better.

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                  • #10
                    I agree with all 6 reasons,with BOUNCE my #1 and never passing a horse 2.
                    Definitely will be one of the best derby's.We have got the 1,2,3,4,5,11,12,13 place finshers of the BC juvenile.Mabey add the 8th place if Optimizer gets in?

                    I agree with your assessment of the BlueGrass,i thought they made a huge mistake running Prospective there instead of the Wood.

                    With all the speed in this year : Bodemeister,Gemologist,Hansen,I'll Have Another,Take Charge Indy,Trinniberg
                    I feel none will last into the tri.Was big on Alpha but with the cut and infection,don't think he'll be 100%.
                    Don't like the LA route either El Padrino,Mark Valenski
                    So I'm going with the 2 Union Rags,3 Creative Cause ,4 Dullahan finishers of the Juvenile.With my key horse
                    Daddy Long Legs,even though worst race of his life was over the track 12th place in the juvy.For some reason I believe O'Brian's due the 1 trophy in the world he hasn't won yet.Think he is going to him primed and ready.

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                    • #11
                      6 degrees of separation or reasons to ponder some more

                      Hard to disagree with the statement. The intangibles however, including the Baffert factor make it such that they could trump the (6 reasons) though sound they be. I expect a regression as the front end will not come easy in the big dance. And we have no idea if Bodemeister has any appetite for passing horses down the stretch. I could see him hanging on for 2nd though and will likely have a number of tickets with that scenario.

                      No denying his last race was very impressive and as such could end up making him board co-favorite race day.

                      Having said that I expect we will all go back to the well to rethink our approach once we know where they will be placed in the starting gate. I may end up only making up my mind 5 minutes before the race on how the horses act and look in the paddock pre race. This could cause some significant adjustments to my final approach. At the moment I can't decide how it's going to play out and who will emerge victorious. I will continue on my research for the moment.

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                      • #12
                        I've been watching video and reading the form for a couple of hours now. Here are some observations I want to capture before I forget them.

                        1. Gemologist's run in the Wood was deceptively good. He found a ton of trouble on the first turn and still regrouped to win fairly easily. Of the co-favorites (there will be 3 or 4 horses who will be below 6:1 at post time), I think he is probably the best of the lot.
                        2. Dullahan's BC Juvenile run was deceptively good. He is a bona fide closer and I'm convinced he will take to the very back of the pack, maybe even dead last, in the Derby and then let the race come back to him.
                        3. There will be a lively pace. There are a ton of horses that like to be near the front, even if not right on the front. Even if all these close-up types concede the silly pace to Trinninberg, they won't be far behind and this will jack up the pace. For this reason my Derby key horse will be a closer.

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                        • #13
                          ^^^^ Reason #1 that the KD winner will not be a closer.

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                          • #14
                            I was just kidding.


                            Honest.

                            I thought it was funny--but am sure I'm the only one.

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                            • #15
                              I've been on the Union Rags bandwagon since the BC Juvenile. His first race in 2012 was the bomb so, naturally, I didn't feel he was going to fire huge for the Florida Derby especially on a GP strip favoring good speed horses. Plus, I get another point or two on the odds now that others have established their own credentials. I do love both Gemologist and Dullahan. Gemologist's Wood win was an eye-opener for me. Dullahan is a true grinder and fits well here. I'm going to dismiss Bodemeister in the top 2 spots. I'm sure I'll pay for it but that is how I'm trying to make some money by reducing my output and keying my top 3 horses.

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