Animal Kingdom dominates the Dubai World Cup
Animal Kingdom left no doubters on Saturday as he roared to an impressive two length win in the $10,000,000 Dubai World Cup. Animal Kingdom stalked Royal Delta who led the field to the top of the stretch, but Joel Rosario turned Animal Kingdom loose at the top of the lane and they exploded to a big lead. Super long shot Red Cadeaux came bursting out of the pack and grabbed the second spot ahead of Planteur who ran third. Animal Kingdom will possibly be seen next at Royal Ascot in a couple months.
St. Nicholas Abbey (BetPTC.com Top Selection) turned in an impressive performance under jockey Joseph O’Brien to win the Dubai Sheema Classic. He took command at the top of the lane and had to hold off a fierce challenge from Gentildonna (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) who got close, but couldn’t close the gap and finished second. Sajjhaa scored a big win for the Darley team when he flew up the rail to win the Dubai Duty Free. Little Mike, one of the other big hopes for the Americans led much of the way but couldn’t keep pace with the speedier rivals down the stretch. Reynaldothewizard took home the Golden Shaheen, closing from off the pace and blowing past tiring favorite Trinniberg to win the six furlong sprint. Shea Shea (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) and Christophe Soumillon took home the Al Quoz turf sprint, besting long shot Joy and Fun by three parts of a length, setting a new turf course record for the five furlongs in the process.
Lines of Battle earned himself a spot in the Kentucky Derby by virtue of his nice win in the UAE Derby. He picked up 100 points for the Kentucky Derby after besting Elleval by a length and a half. Cavalryman (BetPTC.com Top Selection) bested his rivals in the two mile Dubai Gold Cup, winning by a powerful three lengths under Silvestre De Sousa. Soft Falling Rain (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) got the day off a nice note for trainer Mike De Kock after winning the Godolphin Mile.
Orb wins the Florida Derby
What was billed by many as a three horse race, turned out to be a one runner affair as Orb blew by It’smyluckyday in the final furlong to win the $1,000,000 Florida Derby on Saturday afternoon. Sent off as the 5/2 third choice, Orb (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) sat back in fifth early on, just behind It’smyluckyday (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who was the solid favorite. Merit Man and Narvaez went out to set the fractions which were pretty pedestrian. It’smyluckyday roared to the lead, and it looked for a second like Orb might have been struggling in behind him. But Orb and John Velazquez found their best gear late and cruised to win by just shy of three lengths. Za Approval (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) had to come from near last early on, but he had a swift pace to run into as he and Jose Lezcano blasted past their rivals to win the Grade 3 Appleton by a length. Beau Choix (BetPTC.com Longshot) made a run at Za Approval but fell a length short.
Cigar Street (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) was yet another masterful ride by Velazquez as they rolled home as the winning favorite in the Grade 3 Skip Away Stakes. Cigar Street had to get past a very stubborn Take Charge Indy (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) who was out on the lead and battled hard to finish second, well ahead of Pants on Fire (BetPTC.com Top Selection) who ran third. Regalo Mia took home the Grade 3 Orchid Stakes, rolling down the center of the Gulfstream turf to get up and win going away by two lengths.
Dreaming of Julia (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) put on easily the biggest performance of the day as she won the Gulfstream Oaks by 21 and ¾ lengths. Live Lively (BetPTC.com Top Selection) went out to the front and held the lead until the 3/8ths pole when John Velazquez let Dreaming of Julia go and she responded with one of the biggest wins you’ll ever see in a Grade 2 event. Ciao Bella (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) took home the Rampart, going wire to wire to beat Authenticity (BetPTC.com Top Selection) by four lengths.
Revolutionary overcomes wide journey to win the Louisiana Derby
Revolutionary had a brutally tough trip in the Withers in his previous win, and on Saturday he overcame a very wide journey to win the $1,000,000 Louisiana Derby. Sent off as the 2/1 favorite, Revolutionary (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) was twelfth early on as a pair of long shots went out and set a brutally fast pace. Javier Castellano kept Revolutionary out in the clear and as they started their move at the half mile pole, they had to go very wide. It seemed they were closer to Bourbon Street than the inside rail. But Revolutionary passed his rivals and took command at the head of the lane. He was quickly joined by Mylute who put on a strong show, as those two battled to the wire, with Revolutionary prevailing by a neck. Mylute was second while Departing (BetPTC.com Longshot) finished up in third.
Amira’s Prince (BetPTC.com Top Selection) took command early on and never looked back, despite a wide front running trip to win the Mervin Muniz Handicap. Sent off as the strong favorite, Amira’s Prince took it to the field and won by a diminishing half length over Willcox Inn and 28/1 String King (BetPTC.com Longshot) who ran 2nd and third. Graydar (BetPTC.com 3rd Selection) had to show a new dimension and rally from off the pace to win the New Orleans Handicap over Mark Valeski (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection). Bourbon Courage (BetPTC.com Top Selection) closed to complete the trifecta. Unlimited Budget (BetPTC.com 2nd Selection) remained undefeated as she bested rival Flashy Gray (BetPTC.com Top Selection) to win the Fair Grounds Oaks