Churchill Downs

Champion Take Charge Brandi Heads 154 Early Nominations To 141st Longines Kentucky Oaks

Willis D. Horton’s reigning juvenile champion Take Charge Brandi is the brightest star among 154 horses on the roster of early nominations to the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (Grade I), America’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies scheduled for its 141st running on Friday, May 1 at Churchill Downs Racetrack (“CDRT”).

The nominated fillies are bidding to succeed Winchell Thoroughbreds’ homebred Untapable, who won the 2014 Kentucky Oaks under history-making, two-time Kentucky Oaks-winning jockey Rosie Napravnik before 113,071 onlookers at Churchill Downs.  Untapable’s Oaks for trainer Steve Asmussen was a highlight of a 2014 season that earned the daughter of Tapit an Eclipse Award that honored her as America’s champion 3-year-old filly. She was unbeaten in races against her gender in 2014, with her only loss being a fourth-place finish to eventual Breeders’ Cup Classic (GI) winner Bayern in Monmouth Park’s Haskell Invitational (GI). Untapable completed her championship season with a victory in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI), in which she became only the third Kentucky Oaks winner to also win that race.

This year’s early nomination total is a 27.3% increase from the 121 fillies made eligible during the early nomination total in 2014, and it’s the highest total since 170 fillies were nominated in 2009. The Oaks early nomination record is 192 from 2007.

A late nomination phase is open and will continue through Wednesday, April 8. Late nominations require payment of a $1,500 fee. After the closing of late nominations, there will be a final opportunity to make a filly eligible for the Kentucky Oaks through the race’s supplemental nomination process, which requires payment of $30,000 at the time of entry to the race on Tuesday, April 28.

The Oaks field is limited to 14 starters and up to four fillies designated as “also-eligible” to start. Eligibility to compete in the Oaks is determined by points amassed during the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks” series. If one of more horses should scratch from the Longines Kentucky Oaks before 9 a.m. on the morning of the race, fillies from the “also-eligible” list with the highest respective point totals would be allowed to compete.

The 1 1/8-mile Kentucky Oaks is run each year on the eve of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) and, like the Derby, has been run annually with interruption since Churchill Downs’ first racing meet in 1875, when the track was known as the Louisville Jockey Club. The race is the centerpiece of a celebration of fashion, food, celebrity and fun that is focused on women’s health issues and outreach. Churchill Downs and national charity partner Bright Pink® join forces on Oaks Day to promote breast cancer and ovarian health outreach. Along with the running of the main event, Kentucky Oaks Day will feature the seventh annual Survivors Parade Presented by Kroger and will continue the tradition of the “Pink Out,” with all attendees being urged to incorporate the color pink into their Oaks Day attire.

The 2015 Longines Kentucky Oaks will be telecast live on NBCSN.

Take Charge Brandi launched her Eclipse Award championship run with a front-running victory at odds of 61-1 in the $2 million 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies for Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas. She followed that triumph with victories in the Grade III Delta Princess at Delta Downs and the Grade I Starlet at Southern California’s Los Alamitos. Lukas’ star opened her 3-year-old campaign with a victory in the $100,000 Martha Washington at Oaklawn Park to improve her career record to 4-1-0 in eight races with earnings of $1,620,126.

A Longines Kentucky Oaks victory by Take Charge Brandi would provide the 79-year-old Lukas his fifth Kentucky Oaks victory, but first triumph since a win in the 1990 Oaks by Seaside Attraction. Lukas is tied with Calumet Farm’s Ben Jones for second place in career Kentucky Oaks victories and trails only fellow Hall of Fame conditioner Woody Stephens, who had five career victories in the Kentucky Oaks. Lukas’ other Oaks winners were Blush With Pride (1982), Lucky Lucky Lucky (1984) and eventual 3-year-old filly champion Open Mind (1989).

The strong list of early Kentucky Oaks nominees also includes Fletcher and Carolyn Gray’s I’m A Chatterbox, winner of Fair Grounds’ Rachel Alexandra (GIII) and Silverbulletday in her two races since she joined the stable of two-time Kentucky Oaks winning-trainer Larry Jones, and Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables LLC and The Elkstone Group LLC’s Condo Commando, a dazzling winner of Saratoga’s Spinaway (GI) and Aqueduct’s Demoiselle (GII) at two. Condo Commando opened her 3-year-old season for trainer Rudy Rodriguez with a victory in Aqueduct’s Busher.

Other prominent fillies who are taking aim on the Oaks include Spendthrift Farm LLC’s Callback, winner of Santa Anita’s Las Virgenes (GI), Siena Farm’s Angela Renee, winner of Santa Anita’s Chandelier (GI); Forum Racing LLC’s Forward Gal (GII) winner Birdatthewire; GSN Racing’s Cristina’s Journey, winner of the Pocahontas (GII) at Churchill Downs; Phaedrus Stable LLC’s Ekati’s Phaeton, winner of the Davona Dale (GII) at Gulfstream Park; Eclipse Thoroughbred Partners’ Starlet runner-up Feathered; Cheyenne Stables LLC’s Light the City, runner-up in the Las Virgenes; Treadway Racing Stable’s Wonder Gal, runner-up in the Frizette (GI) at Belmont Park; Regis Racing’s Santa Ynez (GII) winner Seduire; Gary and Mary West’s Golden Rod (GII) winner West Coast Belle; and Charles E. Fipke’s Forever Unbridled, a daughter of 2006 Kentucky Oaks winner Lemons Forever who ran third in Rachel Alexandra.

Two-time Kentucky Oaks winning-trainer Jerry Hollendorfer nominated 17 fillies to lead all trainers in early Kentucky Oaks nominations. Todd Pletcher, also a two-time Oaks winner, nominated 14 fillies, and was followed by Kiaran McLaughlin (10), Dale Romans (six), Bob Baffert (five) and Chad Brown (five).

Godolphin Racing LLC made nine fillies eligible to compete in the Kentucky Oaks to lead all owners during the early nomination phase. Charles Fipke has the second most nominations by an owner with seven.

Untapable was the second consecutive Eclipse Award 3-year-old filly champion to emerge from the Kentucky Oaks.  Spendthrift Farm LLC’s Beholder, runner-to King of Prussia Stable’s Princess of Sylmar in the 2013 Kentucky Oaks, earned that year’s championship in her age and gender division. Beholder secured her Eclipse Award with three consecutive Grade I victories following her loss in the Oaks. Beholder’s championship season concluded with a dominant triumph over two-time champion Royal Delta and Princess of Sylmar in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI) at Santa Anita.

Prior to the championships by Untapable and Beholder, four consecutive Kentucky Oaks winners earned championship honors from 2007-2010. That streak included Kentucky Oaks triumphs by champions Blind Luck (2010), Rachel Alexandra (2009), Proud Spell (2008) and Rags to Riches (2007). Rachel Alexandra and Rags to Riches defeated males in Triple Crown races in their subsequent starts, with the former defeating Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird in the Preakness (GI) on her way to Horse of the Year honors, and Rags to Riches edged eventual two-time Horse of the Year Curlin in a dramatic renewal of the Belmont Stakes (GI). Rachel Alexandra was named Horse of the Year following her brilliant 3-year-old season that also included Grade I victories over males in the Haskell Invitational and the Woodward at Saratoga.

Other Kentucky Oaks winners who were named champions of the in their age and gender division include Ashado (2004), Bird Town (2003), Farda Amiga (2002), Silverbulletday (1999), Open Mind, Tiffany Lass (1986), Davona Dale (1979) and Susan’s Girl (1972). Kentucky Oaks participants who went on to secure 3-year-old championship honors include Wait a While (3rd in in the Kentucky Oaks in 2006), Banshee Breeze (runner-up in 1998), Go for Wand (runner-up in 1990) and Wayward Lass (3rd in 1981). Believe You Can, winner of the 2012 Oaks, and 2011 winner Plum Pretty were among three finalists for the Eclipse Award for champion 3-year-old filly in their respective 3-year-old seasons.

Follow this link to a list of early nominations to the 141st Longines Kentucky Oaks.

Two-Time Horse Of The Year, Defending Winner Wise Dan, Champ Main Sequence Top Early Woodford Reserve Turf Classic Nominations

Defending winner and two-time Horse of the Year Wise Dan and 2015 Eclipse Award turf champion Main Sequence are the brightest lights among 74 older grass stars on the roster of early nominations to compete in the 29th running of the $500,000 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (Grade I) at Churchill Downs Racetrack on Kentucky Derby Day, May 2.

Should Mort Fink’s homebred Wise Dan be entered in this year’s renewal of the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, he would seek an unprecedented third straight victory – and a record third win overall – in the 1 1/8-mile grass race for 4-year-olds and up that has become one of the United States’ most important turf races since its debut in 1987. The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic is positioned each year as the race that immediately precedes the $2 million-guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) on the 13-race Derby Day racing program that his year will include seven stakes events.

The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic is scheduled to be televised as part of NBC’s broadcast of the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby.

The 2015 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic attracted 74 nominees during its early nomination phase, compared to 90 a year ago. Early nominations to the Turf Classic were due by Feb. 21 and each required a payment of $100.

Late nominations for the race are now being accepted. The deadline for late nominations is 11:59 p.m. (all times Eastern) on Wednesday, April 8 and each nomination during the late phase must be accompanied by a payment of $1,000. Supplemental nominations to the race may be made at the time of entry on Wednesday, April 29 and each will require payment of a $15,000 fee. The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic is limited to 14 starters, with two “also-eligible” entrants.

Wise Dan, an 8-year-old gelding trained by Charlie LoPresti, was unbeaten in four 2015 races, but his perfect campaign was interrupted twice by health concerns. After season-opening victories in Keeneland’s Maker’s 46 Mile (GI) and Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, he suffered a bout with colic that required emergency surgery. He returned to action in the late summer with wins in the Bernard Baruch (GII) at Saratoga and Keeneland’s Shadwell Turf Mile (GI). Wise Dan was being pointed toward a third consecutive victory in the Breeders’ Cup Mile (GI), but an October ankle injury ended the season for the chestnut son of Wiseman’s Ferry.

Wise Dan held-off Juddmonte Farm’s homebred Seek Again to win the 2014 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic, one of 15 wins in 16 turf outings during his stellar career. Last year’s Woodford Reserve victory enabled Wise Dan to join Einstein (2008-09) as the race’s only two-time winners. His career record heading into 2015 stands at 23-2-0 in 21 races and he has earned of $7,552,920.  Along with his pair of gold “Horse of the Year” Eclipse Award statuettes, Wise Dan has four other Eclipse Awards – two each in the categories of turf champion and top older male.

Flaxman Holdings Ltd.’s Main Sequence, who started his career in England and is unbeaten in five stakes races since his stateside debut last July, completed his championship season with a victory in the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI). He opened his 2015 campaign with a victory in the Grade II Mac Diarmida at Gulfstream Park on Feb. 15. The 6-year-old son of Aldeberan is trained by Graham Motion, who won the 2011 Kentucky Derby with Animal Kingdom and is seeking his first triumph in the Woodford Reserve. Main Sequence dazzled in his U.S. bow when he rallied for a narrow victory in the United Nations (GI) at Monmouth Park. He followed his successful debut with dramatic late-running victories in the Sword Dancer Invitational (GI) at Saratoga and Joe Hirsch Turf Classic (GI) at Belmont Park prior to capping his unbeaten season in the Breeders’ Cup Turf.

His five triumphs in the U.S. boosted the career record for Main Sequence to 9-3-3 in 19 races and lifted his bankroll to $3,418,591.

Prominent among the other stars nominated to the 2015 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic are 2014 runner-up Seek Again, Donegal Racing and Rockingham Ranch’s Finnegans Wake, Phipps Stable’s Imagining, Terry Hamilton’s rising star Heart to Heart and David Heerensperger and Jose Nelson’s Winning Prize (ARG).

Seek Again lost by a head to Wise Dan in last year’s renewal. One of four Woodford Reserve nominees from the barn of Hall of Fame trainer and all-time Churchill Downs win leader Bill Mott, Seek Again won Saratoga’s Fourstardave Handicap (GII) in 2014.  Mott won the Woodford Reserve with turf champion Paradise Creek in 1994 and Claiborne Farm’s Stroll in 2004.

Finnegan’s Wake showed an affinity for new surroundings when he moved to the Southern California barn of trainer Peter Miller last fall and has crafted a 3-1-0 record in five races on the West Coast. Those triumphs include a current three-race streak in Del Mar’s Hollywood Turf Cup (GII) in late 2014 and a pair of Grade II wins this year in Santa Anita’s San Gabriel and San Marcos.

Imagining won the 2014 Man O’ War (GI) at Belmont Park and lost by a head to champion Main Sequence in the Sword Dancer for trainer Shug McGaughey, who won the 1999 Woodford Reserve with Claiborne Farm’s superstar Lure. Heart to Heart, a fan favorite because of the distinctive and prominent heart-shaped star on his face, reeled off three consecutive wins in 2014 that included the Better Talk Now at Saratoga and Churchill Downs’ Grade III Jefferson Cup and Commonwealth Turf. The Brian Lynch trainee ended his year with a fourth-place run in Santa Anita’s Mathis Brothers Mile (GII). Winning Prize (ARG) won the 2014 Kilroe Mile (GI) and Arcadia (GII) at Santa Anita for trainer Neil Drysdale.

Other 2015 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic nominees include Donato Lanni and John F. Youngblood’s Avanzare, winner of the Arcadia (GII); Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s Big Blue Kitten, winner of the Grade I Sword Dancer and United Nations in 2013; John Wentworth’s Fair Grounds Handicap (GIII) winner Chocolate Ride; the Ramseys’ John B. Connally (GIII) winner Coalport; Let’s Go Stable’s W.L. McKnight (GIII), Kent (GIII) and American Derby (GIII) winner Divine Oath; Glen Hill Farm’s homebred Enterprising, winner of Del Mar’s La Jolla (GIII); Glen Hill’s Global View, winner of Churchill Downs’ 2014 American Turf (GII); Wachtel Stable and George J. Kerr’s Canadian Turf (GIII) winner Long On Value; St. Elias Stable and West Point ThoroughbredsRing Weekend, winner of the Hill Prince (GIII), Saranac (GIII) and Tampa Bay Derby (GII) for Motion; Gainesway Stable’s Villandry, the winner of Churchill Downs’ River City Handicap (GIII); and Diamond M Stable’s War Dancer, winner of Churchill Downs’ Louisville Handicap (GIII) for trainer Kenny McPeek.

The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic’s early nominees include a pair of prominent females in the Ramseys’ Stephanie’s Kitten, the 6-year-old winner of Belmont Park’s Flower Bowl (GI) and runner-up to champion Dayatthespa in the Breeders’ Cup Filly & Mare Turf (GI) in 2014 for trainer Chad Brown, and G. Watts Humphrey Jr. and St. George Farm Racing’s Personal Diary, a 4-year-old homebred daughter of City Zip who won last summer’s Del Mar Oaks (GI) for trainer Vicki Oliver.

Todd Pletcher nominated 13 grass stars to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic to lead all trainers. Brown nominated five horses, while Mark Casse, Kiaran McLaughlin, Motion and Mott each made four horses eligible.

The Ramseys, who earned Eclipse Awards in 2014 as America’s top owner and breeder, led all owners with seven nominations. Shadwell Stable was next with four, one more than Charles Fipke and John Oxley.

The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic made an auspicious debut in 1987 when reigning Eclipse Award turf champion Manila took its inaugural running. Manila had won a memorable running of the Breeders’ Cup Turf the previous year, defeating luminaries that included Theatrical, Estrapade and European star Dancing Brave. Along with Manila and Wise Dan, American turf champions that have competed in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic include Paradise Creek, who won the race during his 1994 championship campaign, and 1992 Eclipse Award champion Sky Classic, runner-up to Cudas in that year’s Turf Classic renewal. Two-time winner Einstein, a versatile Brazilian-bred son of 1985 Kentucky Derby winner Spend A Buck, was a finalist for the Eclipse Award for and a finalist for turf champion in 2008 and top older male in 2008 and 2009.

Priscilla Vaccarezza’s Little Mike won the race in 2012, a year during which the Dale Romans-trained gelding also won the Arlington Million (GI) and Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI) and was one of three finalists for U.S. turf champion.

Follow this link for the list of nominations to the 2015 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic.

'All Others' Favored Over Baffert Duo Of American Pharoah, Dortmnud In Kentucky Derby Futures Pool 3

Three days of brisk wagering in the third of four pools in Churchill Downs Racetrack’s (“CDRT”) Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KOFW”) drew to a close Sunday evening with the Mutuel Field (#24), or “All Others”, as a 4-1 favorite, but three-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert’s duo of American Pharoah (#1) and Dortmund (#6) were close behind the favorite in betting that reflected solid fan support for wide-ranging group of contenders for the upcoming 141st “Run for the Roses.”

Wagering on KDFW Pool 3, which opened at noon (all times Eastern) on Thursday, Feb. 27 and concluded Sunday, March 1 at 6 p.m., totaled $422,331and pushed combined betting on this year’s first three Kentucky Derby Future pools to $1,105,503.  The Pool 3 total included $300,403 in $2 win wagers and $121,927 in exacta bets.  Overall wagering in Pool 3 increased 26.3% from 2014’s third pool total of $334,326, and is the largest ttal in the year’s next-to-last Derby Futures pool since the $464,236 wagered in 2006.  This is the second year of a four-pool format for the Kentucky Derby Future Wager, which now opens with a pool late November.

The Kentucky Derby Future Wager enables fans to wager on the Kentucky Derby well in advance of the race at odds that could be much more attractive than those offered on the day of the race. Winning payouts in all KDFW pools are determined by the odds that are in place at the end of each respective betting pool. Those winning mutuel payouts for the $2 minimum win and exacta wagers placed in each Kentucky Derby Future pool will be made following the running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 2 at Churchill Downs.

The roster of betting interests in KDFW Pool 3 was reduced on Sunday when wagering was suspended on The Great War (#21) after trainer Wesley Ward notified Churchill Downs officials that his colt was no longer being considered for the Kentucky Derby.  The colt finished last of 10 horses on Saturday in the $125,000 John Battaglia Memorial at Turfway Park.  No scratches or refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager, but the wager’s rules require an immediate suspension of wagering on a betting interest if Churchill Downs determines that the horse will not compete in the Kentucky Derby because of injury illness or other circumstance.  Wagering on The Great War was suspended prior to the start noon of Sunday’s Pool 3 betting.

The favored “All Others” interest featured all 3-year-old Thoroughbreds other than the 22 individual horses pm  KDFW Pool 3’s roster of individual wagering interests, but it’s 4-1 closing odds were a bit higher than Churchill Downs handicapper Mike Battaglia’s forecast of  3-1 in his Pool 3 morning line.  Several Kentucky Derby contenders were bunched closely behind the Mutuel Field, but it was Baffert’s prime Derby duo that was in closest pursuit.  Zayat Stables LLC’s Eclipse Award 2-year-old champion American Pharoah, a winner of two Grade I races in three races, closed as the 8-1 individual choice by a narrow margin over unbeaten stablemate Dortmund, who is four-for-four for owner Kaleem Shah and stood at 9-1 at the conclusion of Pool 3 betting.

Close behind Baffert’s pair was a tightly-bunched group of major Kentucky Derby hopes comprised of Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (GI) winner Carpe Diem (#3) at 10-1, unbeaten Withers (GIII) winner Far From Over (#8) at 13-1, unbeaten Khozan (#14) at 15-1, Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) winner and KDFW Pool 2 individual favorite Texas Red (#20) at 14-1, Holy Bull (GII) winner Upstart (#22) at 15-1, Risen Star (GII) winner International Star (#11) at 22-1, Sam F. Davis (GIII) winner Ocean Knight (#17) at 23-1 and unbeaten Delta Jackpot (GIII) winner Ocho Ocho Ocho (#18) at 24-1.

The final Kentucky Derby Future Wager pool of 2015 is set for Friday, March 27 through Sunday, March 29.

Real-time odds for each KDFW pool and other information on the wager and the Kentucky Derby are available at the official event Web site at http://www.kentuckyderby.com/racing-wagering/future-wager/pool-3-final-odds.

Follow this link to final odds and $2 will-pays for Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

 Click her for a list of $2 exacta payouts for the Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3.

'All Others' Nips I'm A Chatterbox, Champ Take Charge Brandi, Condo Commando To Be Kentucky Oaks Futures Favorite

Racing fans had some difficulty in separating the major contenders for this year’s running of the $1 million Longines Kentucky Oaks (Grade I) during Churchill Downs’ 2015 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager (“KOFW”), so they settled on the “Mutuel Field” (#24), or “All Others”, as a mild favorite over individual stars I’m A Chatterbox (#4), champion Take Charge Brandi (#22) and Condo Commando (#4) at Sunday evening’s conclusion of three days of betting.

The “All Others” bet was installed as the 5-2 favorite in Churchill Downs Handicapper Mike Battaglia’s morning line odds for the Kentucky Oaks Future Bet. But support was strong for a trio of individual stars and the 2015 Oaks pool had had a rare finish in which four of its 24 betting interests stood at single digit. The Oaks Future bet opened Friday, Feb. 27 at noon (all times Eastern) and concluded Sunday at 6:30 p.m., 30 minutes after the close of the companion Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

The favored individual in the 2015 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager was Fletcher and Carolyn Gray’s I’m A Chatterbox, who closed at odds of 6-1 following her impressive back-to-back victories in the Rachel Alexandra (GIII) and Silverbulletday at Fair Grounds. Those wins by the daughter of Munnings came in her first two starts since she moved to stable of two-time Kentucky Oaks-winning trainer Larry Jones.

Close behind I’m A Chatterbox were Willis D. Horton’s 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) winner and 2014 Eclipse Award 2-year-old filly champion Take Charge Brandi and Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables LLC and The Elkstone Group LLC’s Condo Commando, winner of Saratoga’s Spinaway (GI) and  Aqueduct’s Demoiselle (GII). Both fillies closed at 7-1 in the Oaks Future pool, with slightly more money wagered during the pool on Take Charge Brandi.

A victory in the Kentucky Oaks by Take Charge Brandi would be the fifth for her Hall of Fame trainer D. Wayne Lukas, but his first since 1990 in America’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies. Take Charge Brandi has won four consecutive races since her 61-1 victory in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies launched the run to her juvenile filly title. Condo Commando, a daughter of Tiz Wonderful trained by Rudy Rodriguez, rolled to an easy victory in Aqueduct’s $100,000 Busher in her 2015 debut to improve her career record to four wins in five starts.

The Kentucky Oaks Future Wager enables racing fans to wager on contenders for the Longines Kentucky Oaks weeks in advance of the race at odds that could be more attractive than those available on Oaks Day. The wager features $2 minimum win bets and $2 exactas, which are available in $1 minimum increments in boxes and other multiple number configurations.

Wagering during three days of Kentucky Oaks Future betting totaled $115,615, a strong increase of 42.3% from 2014’s Oaks Futures total of $81,234. The 2015 Oaks Future total included $2 win wagering of $79,445 and exacta betting of $36,170.

Other fillies that attracted solid fan support in the Oaks Future wager were Donegal Racing’s Puca (#17, 11-1), who finished fourth in Gulfstream Park’s Davona Dale (GII) in her most recent start for Hall of Fame trainer Bill MottForum Racing LLC’s Birdatthewire (#2, 12-1), winner of the Forward Gal (GII) and runner-up in the Davona Dale (GII) for trainer Dale Romans; Siena Farm LLC’s Angela Renee (#1, 22-1), the Todd Pletcher-trained winner of the Chandelier (GI); Kaleem Shah’s Luminance (#14, 22-1), an impressive winner of her career debut and a Saturday allowance for two-time Kentucky Oaks-winning trainer Bob Baffert; Eclipse Thoroughbred PartnersFeathered  (#9, 25-1); and Charles Fipke’s Forever Unbridled (#10, 27-1), third in the Rachel Alexandra.

No scratches or betting refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager. Betting on any individual filly in the pool will be suspended immediately should Churchill Downs determine during the pool that injury, illness or some other circumstance would prevent that horse from competing in the Oaks.

Click her for final odds and $2 mutuel will-pays for the 2015 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager.

For a look at $2 exacta will-pays for the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager, follow this think.

'All Others' Solid Kentucky Derby Futures Pool Betting Choice Over Baffert Duo of American Pharoah, Dortmund

With just over nine weeks remaining until the 141st running of the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (Grade I), uncertainty surrounds some of the Derby’s major contenders and it is reflected in the morning line odds for this week’s third of four pools of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”), which launches its three-day run on Friday, Feb. 27 and concludes on Sunday, March 1.

The Mutuel Field, or “All Others”, which includes all 3-year-olds other than the 23 individual horses among Pool 3’s 24 wagering interests, is the 3-1 favorite in Churchill Downs’ handicapper Mike Battaglia’s morning line. That’s a customary, though not exclusive spot for that wagering interest in the next-to-last pool of the wager that was introduced in 1999. Battaglia’s 3-1 odds reflect increased interest in individual horses in the pool, but given, late starts on pre-Derby racing campaigns by some of the pool’s individual stars, “All Others” should emerge as a clear fan’s choice in Pool 3.

Three-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert appears to be in an enviable spot with nine weeks remaining before Kentucky Derby 141 as he conditions both of the 8-1 co-second choices in KDFW Pool 3: Zayat Stables LLC’s reigning Eclipse Award 2-year-old champion American Pharoah (#1) and Kaleem Shah Inc.’s unbeaten Dortmund (#6).

While the latter has run off four wins since his Nov. 2 racing debut that include the Los Alamitos Futurity (GI) and the recent Robert B. Lewis (GIII) at Santa Anita, American Pharoah is one of the wagering interests with some questions to answer. He has not raced since Sept. 27, when he rolled to victory in the FrontRunner (GI) at Santa Anita. American Pharoah missed a planned start in the Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (GI) at Santa Anita because of injury, and is now training toward a planned return to competition in the $750,000 Rebel Stakes (Grade II) on March 14 at Oaklawn Park.

The other major player in KDFW Pool 3 that is surrounded by a bit of mystery is Erich Brehm, Wayne Detmar, Lee Michaels and J. Keith Desormeaux et al’s Texas Red, who romped to an easy victory in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile and was the 9-1 favored individual horse in early February’s second Derby Futures pool. He made his 3-year-old debut in a strong runner-up finish to Peachtree Stable’s Lord Nelson (#15, 30-1) in the seven-furlong San Vicente (GII) on Feb. 1 at Santa Anita, but Texas Red suffered a foot abscess following that race. Trainer and co-owner Keith Desormeaux still has the May 2 Kentucky Derby as the colt’s target, but Texas Red has not worked since the ailment was discovered. Battaglia placed his Pool 3 odds at 12-1.

The Kentucky Derby Future Wager enables fans to wager on the Kentucky Derby well in advance of the race at odds that could be much more attractive than those offered on the day of the race. Winning payouts in all KDFW pools are determined by the odds that are in place at the end of each respective betting pool. Those winning mutuel payouts for the $2 minimum win and exacta wagers placed in each Kentucky Derby Future pool will be made following the running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 2 at Churchill Downs.

Pool 3 of the Derby Future Wager will run concurrent to the only Kentucky Oaks Future Wager pool of 2015. Wagering on both pools is set to open at noon (all times Eastern) on Friday, Feb. 27. Betting on the Kentucky Derby pool will close at 6 p.m. on Sunday, while the Kentucky Oaks pool will remain open for an addition 30 minutes before closing at 6:30 p.m.

Wagering on Pool 3 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager will be offered at Churchill Downs and racetracks throughout North America; on the web via TwinSpires.com, the official online wagering site of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs Incorporated, and other advance deposit wagering sites; and at other simulcast centers and off-track wagering sites. No scratches or betting refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Derby Future wager, but betting will be suspended immediately on a wagering interest in any KDFW pool if Churchill Downs determines that injury, illness or other circumstance revealed during a pool would prevent a horse from competing in the race.

Wagering was brisk in the second KDFW pool that ran from Feb. 6-8. A total of $448,598 in win and exacta wagers was placed during the three days of betting, which was an 18 percent increase in betting from the same pool in 2014. The “All Others” interest was the odds-on 3-5 favorite in Nov. 28-30 opening KDFW pool, which attracted total wagering of $234,574. 

Total wagering in the earlier two pools of this year stands at $683,172. Total betting in the 2014 Kentucky Derby Future Wager, the first to feature four wagering pools, was $1,324,466.

Todd Pletcher, who saddled Super Saver to a Kentucky Derby win in 2010, is the trainer of five of the 23 individual horses on the Pool 3 betting roster. The Pletcher group includes WinStar Farm LLC and Stonestreet Stables LLC’s Carpe Diem (#3, 12-1), the winner of Keeneland’s Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (GI) and runner-up to Texas Red in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. Carpe Diem is another colt who has yet to make his racing debut in 2015, but is scheduled to compete in the Tampa Bay Derby (GIII) at Tampa Bay Downs on March 7.

Pletcher, who trained six of the 23 individual horses in KDFW Pool 2, also trains the unbeaten Itsaknockout (#12, 20-1), who won last week’s Fountain of Youth (GII) at Gulfstream Park via disqualification; Champagne (GI) winner Daredevil (#5, 30-1);  unbeaten Withers (GIII) winner Far From Over (#8, 15-1); and unbeaten Khozan #14, 15-1), who won an allowance race at Gulfstream Park on Sunday.

Along with the highly-regarded American Pharoah and Dortmund, Bob Baffert trains a third Pool 3 betting interest in San Vicente winner Lord Nelson.

Another horse expected to attract strong support in the upcoming pool is Ralph M. EvansUpstart (#22, 15-1), the winner of Gulfstream Park’s Holy Bull (GII) who was disqualified from first to second in last week’s Fountain of Youth. Trainer Rick Violette Jr.s’ New York-bred son of Flatter has a record of 3-2-1 in six career races. Another New York-bred star likely to garner increased support in the pool is Ken and Sarah Ramsey’s International Star (#11, 20-1), a son of 2000 Kentucky Derby winner Fusaichi Pegasus who won last week’s Risen Star (GII) at Fair Grounds after winning the Lecomte (GIII) over the New Orleans track in his previous outing.

Other prominent players heading into Pool 3 include Stonestreet Stables LLC’s Ocean Knight (#17), the Kiaran McLaughlin-trained winner of Tampa Bay Downs’ Sam F. Davis and a 15-1 risk in Battaglia’s morning line odds; DP Racing’s Ocho Ocho Ocho (#18), winner of the $1 million Delta Jackpot (GIII) and listed at 20-1 as the James Cassidy trainee prepares for his 2015 debut; and Robert V. LaPenta and Harry Rosenblum’s Far Right (#9, 20-1), winner of the Southwest (GIII) and Smarty Jones at Oaklawn Park for trainer Ron Moquett.

KDFW Pool 3 wagering interests that were not a part of Pool 2 include Golden Pegasus Racing’s Bolo (#2, 50-1), winner of the Eddie Logan on turf at Santa Anita; John C. Oxley’s recent maiden winner Danzig Moon (#4, 50-1), Far From Over, Donegal Racing’s Keen Ice (#13, 50-1), third in the Risen Star; and Christopher T. Dunn and Loooch Racing Stables Inc.’s War Story, runner-up to Far Right in both the Southwest and Smarty Jones.

Wagering interests for the Kentucky Derby Future Wager were chosen by Churchill Downs committee that included Racing Secretary Ben Huffman, Senior Director of Communications and Media Services Darren Rogers, Director of Programming and Senior Racing Analyst Jill Byrne, Player Services Manager Gary Palmisano and Vice President, Racing Communications John Asher.

After the closing of KDFW Pool 3, one Derby Futures pool will remain on the schedule prior to Kentucky Derby 141. The fourth and final KDFW pool is set for five weeks before the Derby and will run from Friday, March 27 through Sunday, March 29.

Real-time odds during the three-day run of KDFW Pool 3 and other information the wager and the Kentucky Derby are available at the official event Web site at http://www.kentuckyderby.com/racing-wagering/future-wager/pool-3-final-odds.

Click here for thecomplete list of wagering interests and morning line odds for Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3.

Free BRISNET past performances for the wagering interests in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 3 are available at this link.

'All Others' Is Kentucky Oaks Futures Favorite, Champ Take Charge Brandi Is Narrow Individual Choice

Streaking Champion Two-Year-Old Filly Take Charge Brandi is a narrow choice as the favored individual horse, but the ever-popular Mutuel Field (#24), or “All Other 3-Year-Old Fillies,” will again be a solid favorite in the morning line odds for Churchill Downs Racetrack’s Kentucky Oaks Future Wager (“KOFW”), which opens a three-day run on Friday, Feb. 27 and concludes on Sunday, March 1.

               Bettors were on target in 2014 when they tabbed Winchell ThoroughbredsUntapable as the 5-1 Future Wager favorite to win the Longines Kentucky Oaks (Grade I), America’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies. The Steve Asmussen-trained star rolled to a dominant Oaks win and became just the third Oaks winner to also take the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI) during a campaign in which she was unbeaten against her gender and suffered her only loss in a fourth-place finish against males in the Haskell Invitational (GI) at Monmouth Park. Untapable earned the 2014 Eclipse Award for America’s outstanding 3-year-old filly.

               The pre-race picture is murkier heading into this year’s 141st running of the Kentucky Oaks on Friday, May 1 at Churchill Downs, and handicapper Mike Battaglia has installed the Mutuel Field, or “All Others,” as the 5-2 favorite in the Oaks Future pool. 
“All Others” includes all 3-year-old fillies other than the 23 individual horses listed among the KOFW’s 24 wagering interests.

               Willis D. Horton’s Take Charge Brandi, riding a streak of four consecutive stakes triumphs that began with her 61-1 upset in the $2 million 14 Hands Winery Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies (GI) on Nov. 1 at Santa Anita, is the 6-1 favored individual in lone Kentucky Oaks Future Wager Pool of 2015. The string of stakes wins by the D. Wayne Lukas-trained Take Charge Brandi also includes the Starlet (GI) at Los Alamitos, Delta Downs’ Delta Princess (GIII) and the Martha Washington at Oaklawn Park. Her career record stands at 5-1-0 in nine races with earnings of $1,680,125.

Despite her successful run, Take Charge Brandi is far from an overwhelming choice among the individual Oaks contenders in the pool. Close behind the daughter of Giant’s Causeway are 8-1 co-third choices Condo Commando (#4), Michael Dubb, Bethlehem Stables LLC and The Elkstone Group LLC’s romping winner of Saratoga’s Spinaway (GI) and Aqueduct’s Demoiselle (GII) at two, and the Fletcher and Carolyn Gray’s I’m A Chatterbox (#11), who earned back-to-back wins in the Rachel Alexandra (GIII) and Silverbulletday at Fair Grounds since she joined the stable of two-time Kentucky Oaks-winning trainer Larry Jones.

               The Kentucky Oaks Future Wager enables racing fans to wager on contenders for the Kentucky Oaks weeks in advance of the 2015 renewal of the 1 1/8-mile race for 3-year-old fillies at odds that could be more attractive than those available on Oaks Day. 

               The wager permits $2 minimum win bets and $2 exactas, which are available in $1 minimum increments in boxes and other multiple number configurations. The KOFW pool runs concurrent to the third of four pools of the 2015 Kentucky Derby Future Wager. Wagering in both the Oaks and Derby pools is scheduled to open at noon (all times Eastern) on Friday, Feb. 27. Betting in the Kentucky Derby Future Wager pool will conclude at 6 p.m. on Sunday, March 1 and Kentucky Oaks Future betting will continue for 30 minutes before the pool closes at 6:30 p.m.

No scratches or betting refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager. Betting on any individual filly in the pool will be suspended immediately should Churchill Downs determine during the pool that injury, illness or some other circumstance would prevent that horse from competing in the Oaks.

Total wagering on the 2014 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager (including win and exacta betting) was $81,234. The betting total for the three-day pool in 2013 totaled $126,039.

Other fillies expected to attract solid support in the KOFW pool include Spendthrift Farm LLC’s Callback (#2, 12-1), the Bob Baffert-trained winner of the Las Virgenes (GI) at Santa Anita; Phaedrus Flights LLC’s  Ekati’s Phaeton (#6, 20-1), the front-running winner of Gulfstream Park’s Davona Dale (GII); Birdathewire (#2, 20-1), the Dale Romans-trained winner of Gulfstream Park’s Forward Gal (GII) and a close third in the Davona Dale; StarLadies Racing’s Eskenformoney (#7, 20-1), runner-up in the Davona Dale; Eclipse Thoroughbred PartnersFeathered (#9, 20-1), the Todd Pletcher-trained runner-up to Take Charge Brandi in the Starlet; and Donegal Racing’s Puca (#17, 20-1), fourth in the Davona Dale for Hall of Fame trainer Bill Mott.

Two-time Kentucky Oaks winners Baffert and Pletcher each train three of the Oaks Future Wager betting interests. Baffert conditions Callback, Fantastic Style and Luminance, while Pletcher trains Angela Renee, Eskenformoney and Feathered.        

The wagering interests for the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager are selected by a committee that consists of Churchill Downs Racing Secretary Ben Huffman, Senior Director of Communications and Media Services Darren Rogers, Director of Programming and Senior Racing Analyst Jill Byrne, Player Services Manager Gary Palmisano and Vice President of Communications John Asher.

Real time odds and other information on the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager is available at http://www.kentuckyderby.com/racing-wagering/future-wager/pool-3-oaks-odds.

Follow this link to a complete roster of wagering interests and morning line odds for the 2015 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager.

Free BRISNET past performances for the wagering interest in the 2015 Kentucky Oaks Future Wager are available at this link.

Early Nominations to Longines Kentucky Oaks, Woodford Reserve Turf Classic Due Saturday

Owners and trainers of 3-year-old fillies who hope their young stars prove worthy of a spot in the starting gate for the 141st running of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s (“CDRT”) $1 million guaranteed Longines Kentucky Oaks (Grade I) on Friday, May 1 have until Saturday (Feb. 21) to make their fillies eligible for America’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies before the conclusion of its early nomination phase.

The deadline for early nominations to the Kentucky Oaks is 11:59 p.m. (all times Eastern) on Saturday, Feb. 21. Each early nomination to the 1 1/8-mile sister race to the $2 million guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) must be accompanied by a payment of $200.

The Longines Kentucky Oaks shares its rich history and tradition with the Kentucky Derby. Both races were introduced in 1875 at the inaugural racing meet at the track originally known as the Louisville Jockey Club. Both the Oaks and the Derby have been run annually and without interruption since their respective debuts.

The Oaks field is limited to 14 starters and up to four fillies designated as “also-eligible” to start. Eligibility to compete in the Oaks is determined by points amassed during the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks” system. If one of more horses should scratch from the Longines Kentucky Oaks before 9 a.m. on the morning of the race, fillies from the “also-eligible” list with the highest respective point totals would be allowed to compete.

The 2015 Longines Kentucky Oaks will be telecast live on the NBCSN.

Last year’s historic 140th running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks was won by Winchell Thoroughbreds’ homebred Untapable, who provided jockey Rosie Napravnik, the only woman to ride an Oaks winner, with her second triumph in the race.  Untapable’s win also was the second for her owner and her trainer, Steve Asmussen. Untapable went on to become just the third Kentucky Oaks winner to also win the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI). She was unbeaten against her gender in 2014 and was named the Eclipse Award honoree for champion 3-year-old filly. Winchell’s filly was the 27th Kentucky Oaks winner or participant to be crowned as the nation’s champion 3-year-old filly.

Sharing the Feb. 21 deadline for early nominations is the 29th running of the $500,000 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (GI), which will run immediately prior to the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 2. The 1 1/8-mile race for 4-year-olds and up on the Matt Winn Turf Course has become one of the nation’s top races for older turf horses since its inaugural running in 1987.

Early nominations to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic must be accompanied by a payment of $100.

Horsemen can nominate horses to either the Longines Kentucky Oaks or Woodford Reserve Turf Classic by contacting Churchill Downs Racing’s Kelly Danner via telephone at (502) 638-3825 or email at Kelly.Danner@KyDerby.com. Nominations also can be made via fax at (502) 638-3915. Nomination forms for the Longines Kentucky Oaks and Woodford Reserve Turf Classic are available online at www.churchilldowns.com.

Churchill Downs representatives have been at tracks around the U.S. this week to accept nominations to those races. They include Racing Secretary Ben Huffman and Assistant Racing Secretary Dan Bork in Florida, Fair Grounds’ Assistant Racing Secretary Scott Jones in Louisiana, Gene Williams in California and Steve Krajcir in Arkansas.

A late nomination period for Longines Kentucky Oaks 141 will open Sunday, Feb. 22 and conclude on Wednesday, April 8. Nomination of any 3-year-old filly to the Oaks during the late nomination phase will require payment of a $1,500 fee. There will be a final opportunity to make a filly eligible for the Kentucky Oaks through a supplemental nomination process that requires payment of $30,000 fee at the time of entry on Tuesday, April 28.

The 2014 running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks attracted 121 early nominations.

Churchill Downs also accepts late nominations to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic. Those nominations require payment of a $1,000 fee by the late nomination deadline of 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, April 8. Supplemental nominations to the race may be made at the time of entry on Wednesday, April 29 and each requires the payment of a $15,000 fee. The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic is limited to 14 starters, with two “also-eligible” entrants.

The 2014 Eclipse Award earned by Untapable was the second consecutive 3-year-old filly championship bestowed on a Kentucky Oaks participant. King of Prussia Stable’s Princess of Sylmar won the 2013 Kentucky Oaks, but it was the runner-up, Spendthrift Farm LLC’s Beholder, who took top honors at the end of the year. Beholder secured her Eclipse Award with three consecutive victories after her Oaks setback. The string was capped by Beholder’s dominant triumph over two-time champion Royal Delta and Princess of Sylmar in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI) at Santa Anita.

Blind Luck won the 2010 Kentucky Oaks to conclude a streak of four consecutive Kentucky Oaks winners to take championship honors for her gender and age division. Others in the streak were Rachel Alexandra (2009), Proud Spell (2008) and Rags to Riches (2007). Rachel Alexandra and Rags to Riches defeated males in Triple Crown races in their subsequent starts, with the former defeating Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird in the Preakness (GI) on her way to Horse of the Year honors, and Rags to Riches edged eventual two-time Horse of the Year Curlin in a dramatic renewal of the Belmont Stakes (GI).

Other stars who won the Kentucky Oaks on their way to an Eclipse Award for 3-year-old filly championship honors include Ashado (2004), Bird Town (’03), Farda Amiga (’02), Silverbulletday (’99), Open Mind (’89), Tiffany Lass (’86), Davona Dale (’79) and Susan’s Girl (’72). Fillies that failed to win the Oaks but earned championship honors at the conclusion of their 3-year-old seasons include Wait a While (3rd in ’06), Banshee Breeze (2nd in ’98), Go for Wand (2nd in ’90) and Wayward Lass (3rd in ’81). Believe You Can, winner of the 2012 Oaks, and 2011 winner Plum Pretty were among three Eclipse Award finalists in their respective 3-year-old seasons.

Mort Fink’s two-time Horse of the Year and two-time turf champion Wise Dan, trained by Charlie LoPresti, edged Seek Again to win the 2014 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic and join Einstein (2008-09) as the race’s only two-time winners. Priscilla Vaccarezza’s Little Mike won the race in 2012, a year during which the Dale Romans-trained gelding also won the Arlington Million (GI) and Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI).

The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic got off to an auspicious start in 1987 when reigning Eclipse Award turf champion Manila won its inaugural running. Manila had won the Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI) in 1986, defeating luminaries that included Theatrical, Estrapade and European star Dancing Brave in that memorable contest. Other American turf champions that have competed in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic include Paradise Creek, who took the race during his 1994 championship campaign, and 1992 Eclipse Award grass champion Sky Classic, runner-up to Cudas in that year’s Turf Classic renewal. Einstein won the 2008-09 renewals and the versatile Brazilian-bred son of 1985 Kentucky Derby winner Spend A Buck was a finalist for the Eclipse Award for top older male in each of those years and a finalist for turf champion in 2008.

The 2014 running of the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic attracted 90 early nominations.

Early Nominations to Longines Kentucky Oaks, Woodford Reserve Turf Classic Due Saturday

Owners and trainers of 3-year-old fillies who hope their young stars prove worthy of a spot in the starting gate for the 141st running of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s (“CDRT”) $1 million guaranteed Longines Kentucky Oaks (Grade I) on Friday, May 1 have until Saturday (Feb. 21) to make their fillies eligible for America’s premier race for 3-year-old fillies before the conclusion of its early nomination phase.

The deadline for early nominations to the Kentucky Oaks is 11:59 p.m. (all times Eastern) on Saturday, Feb. 21. Each early nomination to the 1 1/8-mile sister race to the $2 million guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (GI) must be accompanied by a payment of $200.

The Longines Kentucky Oaks shares its rich history and tradition with the Kentucky Derby. Both races were introduced in 1875 at the inaugural racing meet at the track originally known as the Louisville Jockey Club. Both the Oaks and the Derby have been run annually and without interruption since their respective debuts.

The Oaks field is limited to 14 starters and up to four fillies designated as “also-eligible” to start. Eligibility to compete in the Oaks is determined by points amassed during the “Road to the Kentucky Oaks” system. If one of more horses should scratch from the Longines Kentucky Oaks before 9 a.m. on the morning of the race, fillies from the “also-eligible” list with the highest respective point totals would be allowed to compete.

The 2015 Longines Kentucky Oaks will be telecast live on the NBCSN.

Last year’s historic 140th running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks was won by Winchell Thoroughbreds’ homebred Untapable, who provided jockey Rosie Napravnik, the only woman to ride an Oaks winner, with her second triumph in the race.  Untapable’s win also was the second for her owner and her trainer, Steve Asmussen. Untapable went on to become just the third Kentucky Oaks winner to also win the $2 million Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI). She was unbeaten against her gender in 2014 and was named the Eclipse Award honoree for champion 3-year-old filly. Winchell’s filly was the 27th Kentucky Oaks winner or participant to be crowned as the nation’s champion 3-year-old filly.

Sharing the Feb. 21 deadline for early nominations is the 29th running of the $500,000 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic (GI), which will run immediately prior to the Kentucky Derby at Churchill Downs on Saturday, May 2. The 1 1/8-mile race for 4-year-olds and up on the Matt Winn Turf Course has become one of the nation’s top races for older turf horses since its inaugural running in 1987.

Early nominations to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic must be accompanied by a payment of $100.

Horsemen can nominate horses to either the Longines Kentucky Oaks or Woodford Reserve Turf Classic by contacting Churchill Downs Racing’s Kelly Danner via telephone at (502) 638-3825 or email at Kelly.Danner@KyDerby.com. Nominations also can be made via fax at (502) 638-3915. Nomination forms for the Longines Kentucky Oaks and Woodford Reserve Turf Classic are available online at www.churchilldowns.com.

Churchill Downs representatives have been at tracks around the U.S. this week to accept nominations to those races. They include Racing Secretary Ben Huffman and Assistant Racing Secretary Dan Bork in Florida, Fair Grounds’ Assistant Racing Secretary Scott Jones in Louisiana, Gene Williams in California and Steve Krajcir in Arkansas.

A late nomination period for Longines Kentucky Oaks 141 will open Sunday, Feb. 22 and conclude on Wednesday, April 8. Nomination of any 3-year-old filly to the Oaks during the late nomination phase will require payment of a $1,500 fee. There will be a final opportunity to make a filly eligible for the Kentucky Oaks through a supplemental nomination process that requires payment of $30,000 fee at the time of entry on Tuesday, April 28.

The 2014 running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks attracted 121 early nominations.

Churchill Downs also accepts late nominations to the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic. Those nominations require payment of a $1,000 fee by the late nomination deadline of 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, April 8. Supplemental nominations to the race may be made at the time of entry on Wednesday, April 29 and each requires the payment of a $15,000 fee. The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic is limited to 14 starters, with two “also-eligible” entrants.

The 2014 Eclipse Award earned by Untapable was the second consecutive 3-year-old filly championship bestowed on a Kentucky Oaks participant. King of Prussia Stable’s Princess of Sylmar won the 2013 Kentucky Oaks, but it was the runner-up, Spendthrift Farm LLC’s Beholder, who took top honors at the end of the year. Beholder secured her Eclipse Award with three consecutive victories after her Oaks setback. The string was capped by Beholder’s dominant triumph over two-time champion Royal Delta and Princess of Sylmar in the Breeders’ Cup Distaff (GI) at Santa Anita.

Blind Luck won the 2010 Kentucky Oaks to conclude a streak of four consecutive Kentucky Oaks winners to take championship honors for her gender and age division. Others in the streak were Rachel Alexandra (2009), Proud Spell (2008) and Rags to Riches (2007). Rachel Alexandra and Rags to Riches defeated males in Triple Crown races in their subsequent starts, with the former defeating Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird in the Preakness (GI) on her way to Horse of the Year honors, and Rags to Riches edged eventual two-time Horse of the Year Curlin in a dramatic renewal of the Belmont Stakes (GI).

Other stars who won the Kentucky Oaks on their way to an Eclipse Award for 3-year-old filly championship honors include Ashado (2004), Bird Town (’03), Farda Amiga (’02), Silverbulletday (’99), Open Mind (’89), Tiffany Lass (’86), Davona Dale (’79) and Susan’s Girl (’72). Fillies that failed to win the Oaks but earned championship honors at the conclusion of their 3-year-old seasons include Wait a While (3rd in ’06), Banshee Breeze (2nd in ’98), Go for Wand (2nd in ’90) and Wayward Lass (3rd in ’81). Believe You Can, winner of the 2012 Oaks, and 2011 winner Plum Pretty were among three Eclipse Award finalists in their respective 3-year-old seasons.

Mort Fink’s two-time Horse of the Year and two-time turf champion Wise Dan, trained by Charlie LoPresti, edged Seek Again to win the 2014 Woodford Reserve Turf Classic and join Einstein (2008-09) as the race’s only two-time winners. Priscilla Vaccarezza’s Little Mike won the race in 2012, a year during which the Dale Romans-trained gelding also won the Arlington Million (GI) and Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI).

The Woodford Reserve Turf Classic got off to an auspicious start in 1987 when reigning Eclipse Award turf champion Manila won its inaugural running. Manila had won the Breeders’ Cup Turf (GI) in 1986, defeating luminaries that included Theatrical, Estrapade and European star Dancing Brave in that memorable contest. Other American turf champions that have competed in the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic include Paradise Creek, who took the race during his 1994 championship campaign, and 1992 Eclipse Award grass champion Sky Classic, runner-up to Cudas in that year’s Turf Classic renewal. Einstein won the 2008-09 renewals and the versatile Brazilian-bred son of 1985 Kentucky Derby winner Spend A Buck was a finalist for the Eclipse Award for top older male in each of those years and a finalist for turf champion in 2008.

The 2014 running of the Woodford Reserve Turf Classic attracted 90 early nominations.

'All Others' Favored at 5-2, Texas Red Top Individual In Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2

As expected, the Mutuel Feld (#24), known to many racing fans as “All Others,” was the betting favorite when Pool 2 of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”) closed Sunday evening, but that wagering interest was not the overwhelming favorite it was expected to be and Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (Grade I) winner Texas Red (#21) emerged from a tight battle to be the favored individual horse at the end of three days of brisk betting.

“All Others,” which is comprised of every 3-year-old Thoroughbred other than the 23 individual horses in KDFW Pool 2, was the 5-2 overall favorite when betting ended Sunday, Feb. 8 at 6 p.m. (all times Eastern). The result continued a KDFW tradition in which the “All Others” betting interest has been the favorite in the first pool of each Derby’s calendar year since the wager debuted in 1999. But final odds on the mutuel field were higher than those anticipated by Churchill Downs handicapper Mike Battaglia, who had installed “All Others” as the even-money favorite in his morning line odds for Pool 2.

Texas Red, narrowly beaten by fellow KDFW betting interest Lord Nelson (#16) in his 2015 debut last week in Santa Anita’s San Vicente (GII), emerged as a narrow 9-1 individual choice to win Kentucky Derby 141 in the just-completed pool. The Bob Baffert-trained duo of reigning 2-year-old champion American Pharoah (#1) and unbeaten Dortmund, a dramatic winner of Saturday’s Robert B. Lewis (GII) at Santa Anita, were co-second choices at 10-1. Next were Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (GI) winner Carpe Diem (#2) and Holy Bull (GII) winner Upstart (#23), both at odds of 12-1. A wagering surprise was Ocean Knight (#18), winner of the recent Sam F. Davis (GIII) at Tampa Bay Downs, who closed at 18-1 after being listed at 50-1 in the morning line.

Kentucky Derby fans wagered $448,598 in three days of KDFW Pool 2 betting that opened at noon on Friday, Feb. 6. The total was an increase of 18 percent from Pool 2 wagering in 2014. The third of four 2015 Kentucky Derby Future Wager pools is scheduled for Feb. 27-March 1, and it will run concurrently with the only Kentucky Oaks Future Wager. The final KDFW Pool prior to Kentucky Derby 141 is set for a three-day run from March 27-29.

Along with Dortmund, other KDFW Pool 2 horses that competed in Road to the Kentucky Derby Prep Season races over the weekend included Robert B. Lewis runner-up Firing Line (#8, 35-1) and El Kabeir (#6, 39-1), who finished second in Saturday’s Withers (GIII) at Aqueduct. Surprise Withers winner Far From Over was part of Pool 2’s mutuel field.

The Kentucky Derby Future Wager enables fans of America’s greatest race to wager on candidates for the $2 million guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum Brands (GI) well in advance of the race at odds that could be much more attractive than those offered on the day of the race. Winning payouts in all KDFW pools are determined by the odds that are in place at the end of each respective betting pool. Payouts for successful $2 minimum win and exacta wagers placed in each Kentucky Derby Future pool will be made following the running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 2 at Churchill Downs.

Wagering on Kentucky Derby Future Wager pools is offered at Churchill Downs and racetracks throughout North America; on the web via TwinSpires.com, the official online wagering site of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs Incorporated; other advance deposit wagering platforms; and at other simulcast centers and off-track wagering sites.

No scratches or betting refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Derby Future wager, but betting will be suspended immediately on a wagering interest in any KDFW pool if Churchill Downs determines that injury, illness or other circumstance revealed during a pool would prevent a horse from competing in the race.

Wagering interests for the Kentucky Derby Future Wager were chosen by Churchill Downs committee that included Racing Secretary Ben Huffman, Senior Director of Communications Darren Rogers, Senior Racing Analyst Jill Byrne, Pari-Mutuel Marketing Manager Gary Palmisano and Vice President, Racing Communications John Asher.

Information the Kentucky Derby and the Future Wager is available at the event Web site at www.KentuckyDerby.com.

Click here for a complete rundown of final odds and $2 mutuel will pays for Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2.

For a look a $2 exacta will pays for KDFW Pool 2, click here.

'All Others' A Cinch To Be Heavily Favored in Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2

The mutuel field (#24), known to many racing fans as “All Others”, has been the favorite in each of Churchill Downs Racetrack’s Kentucky Derby Future Wager (“KDFW”) pools that have opened a calendar year since the wager was created in 1999, and there is no reason to expect that history will not be served when the opening pool of 2015 completes its Friday-through-Sunday (Feb. 6-8) run on Sunday evening.

Churchill Downs Handicapper Mike Battaglia has installed “All Others” as a strong even-money morning line favorite among the 24 betting interests in the three-day Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2 that opens its run at noon (all times Eastern) on Friday, Feb. 6 and concludes on Sunday, Feb. 9 at 6 p.m. Recently-crowned 2014 Eclipse Award 2-year-old champion American Pharoah (#1), along with Dortmund (#5), Upstart (#23), Carpe Diem (#2) and Sentient Jet Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (Grade I) winner Texas Red (#21), headline the 23 individual betting interests.

The pool is the second KDFW pool leading up to the 2015 Kentucky Derby, following an opening pool conducted Nov. 28-30. “All Others” was the odds-on 3-5 favorite in November’s three-day pool, which attracted total wagering of $234,574. Total betting in the 2014 Kentucky Derby Future Wager, the first to feature four wagering pools, was $1,324,466.

The Kentucky Derby Future Wager enables fans of America’s greatest race to wager on candidates for the $2 million guaranteed Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum Brands (GI) well in advance of the race at odds that could be much more attractive than those offered on the day of the race. Winning payouts in all KDFW pools are determined by the odds that are in place at the end of each respective betting pool. Those winning mutuel payouts for the $2 minimum win and exacta wagers placed in each Kentucky Derby Future pool will be made following the running of the Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 2 at Churchill Downs.

The favored mutuel field includes all 3-year-old Thoroughbreds other than the 23 individual horses listed among the 24 betting interests in KDFW Pool 2. With Battaglia tabbing “All Others” as such a strong favorite in his morning line odds, fans may find wagering value in the odds on the individual betting interests. Zayat Stables LLC’s American Pharoah, honored as the juvenile champion of 2014 after emphatic Grade I wins in the Del Mar Futurity and Santa Anita’s FrontRunner for three-time Kentucky Derby-winning trainer Bob Baffert, is the favored individual horse at 10-1.

American Pharoah was injured shortly before a scheduled run in last fall’s Breeders’ Cup Juvenile at Santa Anita and was forced to miss that race. He returned to serious training on Monday, Feb. 2 with a three-furlong workout at Santa Anita.

Close behind the champion and Pool 2 favorite are Kaleem Shah Inc.’s unbeaten Dortmund, the Baffert-trained winner of the Los Alamitos Futurity (GI), and Ralph M. EvansUpstart, an impressive winner of the Holy Bull (GII) at Gulfstream Park for trainer Rick Violette Jr. Those wagering interests are the co-second choices among individual horses at 12-1. Dortmund was the 9-1 individual favorite during last fall’s opening pool of this year’s Kentucky Derby Future Wager.

Just behind that duo at 15-1 is the duo of WinStar Farm LLC and Stonestreet Stables LLC’s Carpe Diem, the Todd Pletcher-trained winner of Keeneland’s Claiborne Breeders’ Futurity (GI) and runner-up in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile, and Erich Brehm, Wayne Detmar, Lee Micheals, and Keith Desormeaux et al’s Texas Red, an emphatic winner of the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile who was narrowly beaten in his 2015 debut in Sunday’s San Vicente (GII) at Santa Anita. Texas Red is trained by co-owner Desormeaux and ridden by Kent Desormeaux, the trainer’s three-time Kentucky Derby-winning brother.

Carpe Diem is one of six KDFW Pool 2 individual betting interests trained by Pletcher, who scored his lone Kentucky Derby victory in 2010 with WinStar Farm’s Super Saver. Joining Carpe Diem in Pletcher’s half-dozen are Competitive Edge (#3, 30-1), Daredevil (#4, 30-1), Itsaknockout (#13, 50-1), J S Bach (#14, 30-1) and Khozan (#15, 20-1). The latter, owned by Al Shaqab Racing, is son of Distorted Humor and a half-brother to two-time champion Royal Delta who scored an easy victory in his racing debut on Jan. 24 at Gulfstream Park.

Baffert and Kiaran McLaughlin each have three trainees in the pool. Along with top individual choices American Pharoah and Dortmund, Baffert trains Lord Nelson (#16, 30-1), who edged Texas Red in the San Vicente in his first start of 2015.  McLaughin, a Lexington, Ky. native looking for his first triumph in the Kentucky Derby, trains Frosted (#9, 30-1) and Imperia (#11, 30-1), both owned by Dubai-based Godolphin, and Stonestreet Stables LLC’s Ocean Knight, the unbeaten winner of the Sam F. Davis (GIII) last weekend at Tampa Bay Downs. McLaughlin saddled Closing Argument for a runner-up finish to the victorious Giacomo in the 2005 Kentucky Derby.

Nine of Pool 2’s betting interests were not featured in November’s opening KDFW Pool 1. They are Far Right (#7, 50-1), Firing Line (#8, 30-1), Gorgeous Bird (#10, 50-1), International Star (#12, 50-1), Itsaknockout, J S. Bach, Khozan, Ocean Knight and Prospect Park (#20, 50-1).

Wagering on Pool 2 Kentucky Derby Future Wager will be offered at Churchill Downs and racetracks throughout North America; on the web via TwinSpires.com, the official online wagering site of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs Incorporated and other advance deposit wagering sites; and at other simulcast centers and off-track wagering sites.

No scratches or betting refunds are permitted in the Kentucky Derby Future wager, but betting will be suspended immediately on a wagering interest in any KDFW pool if Churchill Downs determines that injury, illness or other circumstance revealed during a pool would prevent a horse from competing in the race.

Wagering interests for the Kentucky Derby Future Wager were chosen by Churchill Downs committee that included Racing Secretary Ben Huffman, Senior Director of Communications Darren Rogers, Senior Racing Analyst Jill Byrne, Pari-Mutuel Marketing Manager Gary Palmisano and Vice President, Racing Communications John Asher.

Free Brisnet Ultimate Past Performances for wagering interests in Pool 2 of the Kentucky Derby Future Wager are available at http://www.brisnet.com/brisnet_promos/KDFW2.pdf. Brisnet also has complimentary past performances for all Triple Crown nominees at http://www.brisnet.com/brisnet_promos/TC15noms.pdf.

Two more Kentucky Derby Future Wager pools are scheduled in the months leading up to Derby 141. The dates for those pools are:

  • KDFW Pool 3: Friday, Feb. 27 through Sunday, March 1 (nine weeks in advance of Derby)
  • KDFW Pool 4: Friday, March 27 through Sunday, March 29 (five weeks in advance of Derby)

 There will be a single pool for the Kentucky Oaks Future Wager, which was launched in 2003 and is now in its 13th year.  That pool will run concurrently with KDFW Pool 3 from Friday, Feb. 27 through Sunday, March 1. The only difference in the schedule of those pools is a 6:30 p.m. closing time for the Oaks pool, which is 30 minutes later than the KDFW pool.

The Longines Kentucky Oaks (GI), America’s premiere race for 3-year-old fillies, is set for Friday, May 1.

Real-time odds during the three-day run of KDFW Pool 2 and other information the wager and the Kentucky Derby are available at the official event Web site at www.KentuckyDerby.com.

 Click here to view the wagering interests and morning line odds for Kentucky Derby Future Wager Pool 2.