2015 Santa Anita Derby Preview
The final Road to the Kentucky Derby on Saturday will be the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby. A small field of six horses will compete for $1,000,000 in the one mile and one eighth race.
Both the Grade 1 Wood Memorial from Aqueduct and Grade 1 Blue Grass from Keeneland will be determined by the time the Santa Anita Derby goes off.
The winner of this race will receive 100 points towards the Kentucky Derby Points Leaderboard. Second place will receive 40 points, third place will receive 20 points, and fourth place will receive 10 points.
Post time for the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby is scheduled for 6:30 PM Eastern Time and is the eighth of 11 races on the card at Santa Anita on Saturday. Free past performances for the Santa Anita Derby can be found here.
1. Dortmund (3-5 Morning Line) – The favorite has the rail for this race and he is clearly deserving of the low price. He is 5 for 5 in his career and won his stakes debut in a thrilling finish by a head in the Grade 1 Los Alamitos Futurity. He then had to hold off a game Firing Line in the Grade 3 Robert B. Lewis Stakes 6 weeks later on February 7. Dortmund had no trouble in his last race going gate-to-wire while easily winning the Grade 2 San Felipe Stakes. He will be very tough to beat in this race.
2. One Lucky Dane (5-1 ML) – Trainer Bob Baffert also saddles the heavy favorite to the inside. He ran third in his debut at Del Mar and then ran second by half a length in his next start. He crushed his foes in his third start by 9 1/2 lengths. Baffert was high enough on him after the maiden win to enter him in the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. He had a bit of trouble, but was never a factor finishing sixth by 9 1/2 lengths. After more than a three month break, he came back on March 19 to crush an optional claiming race by 9 3/4 lengths. He most likely will not threaten his stablemate to the inside, but he could hit the board.
3. Cross The Line (15-1 ML) – He has run only at Golden Gate prior to this race. He ran second and third in his first two starts before breaking his maiden by 4 1/2 lengths at a mile in his third start. He followed that up with another victory Cal Derby by 1 3/4 lengths. He was then entered in the Grade 3 El Camino Derby where he ran a good second to Metaboss. He will still need to put forth a big effort to have a chance to hit the board.
4. Bolo (4-1 ML) – He finished fifth in his debut at one mile on the turf before breaking his maiden in his second start at a mile and a sixteenth by 2 3/4 lengths. He then made it back-to-back wins by crushing the Eddie Logan Stakes competition by 4 1/2 lengths. A break of over two months led to him being placed in the Grade 2 San Felipe on dirt. He ran very well in his only dirt start finishing 1 3/4 lengths behind Dortmund while falling to third late. He certainly figures to have a chance underneath here once again.
5. Prospect Park (7-2 ML) – He needed four starts to break his maiden, but he did so by a neck. He then went into an optional claimer where he made it two wins in a row by dusting the field with a 5 1/4 length win. Last time out, he too ran in the Grade 2 San Felipe and had no chance of threatening Dortmund, but did get up for second. He would not be a surprise if he finished second again.
6. Bad Read Sanchez (30-1 ML) – The longest shot in the race has not raced since August. He broke his maiden in his debut at Santa Anita in June of 2014 by 10 lengths and was then sent to a listed stakes race at Los Alamitos. He ran a very good second and then ran a solid third in the Grade 2 Best Pal at Del Mar. He has decent works coming in, but he will probably need this race.
#1 Dortmund is the best horse on paper and will probably improve his record to 6 for 6 lifetime. The race for second will come down to #2 One Lucky Dane, #4 Bolo, and #5 Prospect Park. #5 Prospect Park seems most likely to finish second while #4 Bolo could improve in his second start on dirt and #2 One Lucky Dane certainly has talent to make an impact here.
2. Prospect Park
3. One Lucky Dane
A recap of the Grade 1 Santa Anita Derby will be posted on Saturday night.