American Pharoah crushes his rivals in the Arkansas Derby
American Pharoah might have stamped himself as the Kentucky Derby favorite on Saturday as he dominated the $1,000,000 Arkansas Derby. Sent off as the 1/9 favorite, American Pharoah (BetPTC.com Top Selection) sat second early on behind Bridget’s Big Luvy who set the pace which was quick, getting through a half mile in 45.99 seconds. American Pharoah and Victor Espinoza made their move on the far turn and once they straightened away, it was all over, as American Pharoah opened up at will, eventually winning by eight emphatic lengths. Far Right closed from last early to get up for second ahead of Mr. Z who stayed on bravely to finish third.
In the Grade 2 Oaklawn Handicap it was Race Day (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) who battled with Carve (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) for much of the journey before drawing clear late to get the win. Race Day kicked away down the lane and won by three and three quarter lengths under jockey John Velazquez. Carve was able to hold the second spot ahead of Tapiture (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who ran third to complete a $56 trifecta.
Divining Rod gets up to win the Lexington Stakes
Divining Rod rallied from just off the pace to score a nice win in the $250,000 Lexington Stakes at Keeneland. The Grade 2 event saw Fame and Power (BetPTC.com Top Selection) go out to the front to set the early pace with some pressure from Donworth down the backstretch. Those two came to the top of the stretch as one, but once they straightened away Julien Leparoux took Divining Rod off the rail and they rallied stoutly, drawing away in the final yards to win by three lengths. Donworth ended up in second, just a nose ahead of Fame and Power who finished in third.
Ball Dancing rallied from just off the pace to score a huge win in the Grade 1 Jenny Wiley Stakes. Sent off at odds of 8/5, Ball Dancing (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) and Javier Castellano were third early on as Eden Prairie went out to set the pace. Ball Dancing started her rally on the turn and as they straightened away she grabbed the lead at the top of the lane and drew off to win by two and a half lengths. Filimbi (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) came from fifth early to get up and finish second while Hard Not To Like (BetPTC.com Top Selection) finished up in third. The Grade 3 Ben Ali was a procession for heavily favored Protonico (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who galloped around the track, winning by five lengths over 12/1 Neck N Neck (BetPTC.com Longshot) who finished up in second.
Masochistic punishes the field in the Kona Gold
Masochistic made his first start for his new connections a good one as he won a hard fought edition of the $200,000 Kona Gold Stakes. Sent off as the 4/5 favorite, Masochistic (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) was second early on just off the lead of pacesetter San Onofre (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who got through an opening quarter in 22.33 seconds. They came to the top of the lane pretty much as one when Masochistic started to inch away. San Onofre battled bravely but couldn’t regain the lead as Masochistic won by three quarters of a length.
In the Las Cienegas it was Home Journey who went wire to wire to get a very nice win over favorite Go West Marie. Sent off at odds of 3/1, Home Journey and Rafael Bejarano blitzed through an opening quarter in 21.77 seconds. She let it out on the far turn and opened up almost three as they came into the lane, and a late rally from Go West Marie (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) came up short as Home Journey won by a length.