Kentucky Derby Qualifying Race

Aqueduct will be the scene on New Year’s Day for the running of the $150,000 horse race known as the Jerome Stakes. It is a one-turn mile race and it gives points for qualifying the Kentucky Derby in May. The Top 4 finishers receive 10-4-2-1 on their way to receiving enough points to run in the Derby.

Let’s take a look at the six horses entered in this race in the order of their running assignment:

Direct Order is 6/1 odds to win and has run well recently which was a third place in the Breeder’s Cup Juvenile Turf race. He recently won on November 29th at Aqueduct with a sprinting finish. Look for this horse to finish just out of the points.

Family Biz will run in the race at 20/1 odds to win. He has home track advantage as he trains here has had one impressive showing but the field will be to fast for him. I think some longshot money would be fine for this horse.

The top choice in this race is Mind Control at 6/5 odds and will have Javier Velazquez as the jockey. The horse is well regarded after winning the Saratoga’s Hopeful in easy fashion and defeated some top horses along the way. He struggled a bit at the Breeder’s Cup but allowing this horse to say in New York will keep it under control. Again, this is the horse to beat.

Our Braintrust is the son of Freud and is a threat to win with 7-2 odds. He won at Belmont Park in the Tremont and then recently finished second at the Maryland Millions Futurity. He likes the one-mile length and will be in the money.

At 8/1 odds, Gates of Dawn ran second to Direct Order in his first ran and won his maiden at the wire in his second outing. Trainer John Servis always does well when he brings his horses from New York into these types of races. This is a jump in class for this horse and looks at finish about fourth in this one.

Coming in at gate 6 is Souper Jackpot with 2/1 odds and trained by Mark Casse. The son of Ghostzapper He is likely the top contender to pull the upset over Mind Control. He recently just finished short at the Gulfstream Park and loves the mile distance. He is entered in this to gain points for the Derby.

 

Predictions: Mind Control is the favorite but look for Souper Jackpo to win this race. 

We are betting 6-3-4-5