HRI's Triple Crown Power Rankings

The HRI Triple Crown Power Rankings is a consensus opinion of HorseRaceInsider's editorial staff compiled and written by executive editor John Pricci. It is an amalgam of achievement and opinion relative to the merits of the 2013 Triple Crown. The HRI Triple Crown Power Rankings will be adjusted each week following significant prep race developments.

11th Annual HRI Derby Top 10 Poll, Week 1: Bolt D’Oro Debuts at #1

Several Saturdays ago in the press box, TJ asked when we would begin posting our Derby poll.

Since we knew the Juvenile Champion and consensus Derby favorite Goof Magic was making his three-year-old debut in the Fountain of Youth I figured that we’d do so post race.

Turns out I should have waited until next weekend, after the Tampa Bay Derby, San Felipe and Gotham were contested. Post Fountain of Youth, given a glut of top quality sophomores this year, what a scramble it was to make some present order.

It also turns out, a three-year-old which hasn’t run this year would top the 11th Annual HRI Derby Top 10 in Week 1. Consequently, Bolt d’Oro was an “easy” unanimous choice for our in-house panel to make, debuting at #1.

After next weekend, who the hell knows? But we all see it as a good problem to have. The cure for cancer and Mideast peace will simply have to wait.


: Pronounced ready for his debut with Javier Castellano shipping to SoCal last weekend to work him. Following his anticipated start in the San Felipe, Castellano will have some decisions to make.

: Looked sensational in most recent company work for his much anticipated return in the San Felipe, making for an interesting initial West Coast showdown.

: An accomplished colt at 2 and 3 but labored to pass his workmate recently and never could. People who know him say that’s just him in the mornings. Ultimate respect, but we’ll have to see a race to completely buy in.

: Pretty much a consensus move among HRI staff and panel, moving from the top slot in most everyone’s mind to fourth after his very disappointing bow.

: Will have to wait until after the Gotham that will feature, among others, the accomplished Free Drop Billy, the runnerup to Audible in the Holy Bull, in which this colt ran lights out. Does Castellano land here?

CATHOLIC BOY (12): Most of us liked, or at least respected, his good seasonal debut in the Sam F. Davis. We’ll know more after his next start, re-routed to the Louisiana Derby, in which he is expected to move forward.

: Unquestionably brilliant and, of course, there’s the Baffert factor. But need to see more with respect to his two turn aptitude. No knocks. Extremely gifted, just want to see more.

[tie] AVERY ISLAND (8)
: Working great guns at his Palm Meadows base since winning the Withers in seasonal debut. Scheduled to run next in the G2 Louisiana Derby, MAR 24, giving him six weeks to further prepare for the big dance.

: As far as underrating his Fountain of Youth chances, all should plead guilty as charged. Still not totally, totally convinced that he wasn’t in there to help stablemate Storm Runner, liked by many walking ring insiders.

BRAVASO (5): Don’t know quite what it means yet, but he showed lots of class narrowly out-finishing a very sharp Snapper Sinclair in the Risen Star. Has the Lukas factor but must show it won’t be a one-off in the Louisiana Derby next out.

Also receiving votes, listed alphabetically: Firenze Fire, Flameaway, Magnum Moon, My Boy Jack, Snapper Sinclair, Untamed Domain, Vino Rosso

Top 10 Derby Points Earners, (points, with owner and trainer

1. Bravazo-54 Calumet Farm, D. Wayne Lukas
2. Promises Fulfilled-52 Robert J. Baron, Dale Romans
3. Good Magic-34 e Five Racing Thoroughbreds et al, Chad Brown
4. Firenze Fire-24 Mr. Amore Stable, Jason Servis
5. Snapper Sinclair-22 Bloom Racing Stable, Steve Asmussen
6. McKinzie-20 Watson, Pegram Weitman; Bob Baffert
7. Strike Power-20 Courtlandt Farms, Mark Hennig
8. Instilled Regard-19 Oxo Equine LLC. Jerry Hollendorfer
9. Bolt d’Oro-14 Ruis Racing, Mick Ruis
10. Free Drop Billy-14 Albaugh Family Stables LLC, Dale Romans

Remember that two spots in the starting gate are reserved for the winners of the Japan and European roads to the Kentucky Derby, so traditional American horses are vying for 18 of the 20 stalls.

Written by John Pricci - Comments (30)


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